| SooNews Wire for SooNews.ca |
Monday, March 24, 2008, 11:45AM
Printed from http://www.soonews.ca/viewarticle.php?id=16445
After four years of processing subscription payments for Going Natural magazine, PayPal has abruptly cancelled service to its publisher, the Federation of Canadian Naturists (FCN). Attempts to get an explanation as to how the magazine violates PayPal’s “acceptable use” policy have been met with generic e-mails from faceless and implacable customer-service personnel.
Those e-mails falsely claim the magazine is pornographic, and sells “sexually oriented goods or services involving minors” or “services for which the purpose is to facilitate meetings for sexually oriented activities.”
Going Natural magazine is devoted to naturism (or nudism), a social movement over a hundred years old and unrelated to sexual activity. The practices the magazine has portrayed for over 20 years have been shown to benefit people of all ages, especially naturist children. In several scientific polls, millions of people in Canada and the USA report engaging in naturist activities such as skinny-dipping.
The FCN is not the first naturist organization to be rejected by PayPal, which arbitrarily denies service to persons or organizations it alone deems socially unacceptable.
“PayPal’s decision about Going Natural and its claims about the FCN are unfounded embellishments born of ignorance,” notes Judy Williams, Government Affairs Director for the FCN.
PayPal has become synonymous, world-wide, with the convenience of online payments. As stated on its website, “PayPal has quickly become a global leader in online payment solutions with more than 153 million accounts worldwide.”
“Organizations such as PayPal with near monopolies in their industries are duty-bound to be objective and fair,” says Ms. Williams. “PayPal also has a responsibility to avoid making arbitrary and narrow judgements, as well as issuing wildly untrue and offensive statements about clients.”
The FCN Board of Directors is considering a class action lawsuit. It wouldn’t be the first against PayPal, which paid out over $9 million in 2004 to settle such a suit. Any organization which believes it has been refused service by PayPal because of political, social, or religious views should contact the FCN.
Finally, Ms. Williams points to PayPal’s hypocrisy for accusing the FCN of sexually immoral and even illegal activities, when PayPal itself supports transactions for “certain sexually oriented physical goods,” as etailed on its website.