Here are the things you have to be clear on before adding your credit card:
- You’re agreeing to get charged each time you go off track
- The pledge (amount you’re risking) increases each time, up to your pledge cap
- The goal never lets you off the hook till you explicitly tell it to
- There’s a one-week delay for any changes to a goal (including ending it)
- For manual Do Less goals, you have to explicitly enter zeros if you did nothing
And here’s a list of reasons to not be too scared about the above list:
- We’ll never charge you if you keep all your datapoints on track
- We’ll email you before charging you in case anything went wrong
(like any kind of technical problem or even just confusion about how things work)
- If you reply to that email we’ll always believe you and cancel the charge
(unless you choose to weaselproof yourself)
- Deadman switch! If you stop using Beeminder altogether, we’ll (eventually) stop charging you
I’ve put this in the Newbee category because I’d love to hear thoughts from newbees (or people who remember being newbees, or who have talked to newbees) about which of those were/are surprising and which were made obvious.
We’re working on some UI redesign and a big goal is to make key things like above clear without presenting users with walls of text. We think we’ve made progress in this regard recently – like having initial pledge and pledge cap be one of the first things you choose when creating a goal – but we have a ways to go.
PS: Anything missing from that list? What about the fact that once you add a credit you’re on the hook for all your goals, even the ones you created before adding a credit card? (Those goals will have $0 at risk but if you derail them they’ll have $5 at risk and if you derail them again you’ll actually be paying.)