Support » Plugin: Contextly Recommends » No Response From Contextly

  • We used Contextly for free quite happily while they developed and tested. Undoubtedly Contextly received some benefit from the data they gathered from our users.

    We were sent a bill two months ago and had the service suddenly cut off. When we signed up to use Contextly it was free, and this was the first time we had ever heard about paying for their service. I switched to the WordPress Jetpack built in related posts plug-in.

    Contextly contacted us and enquired why we had switched off their plug-in. I explaining that it was no longer working, and they had sent us a bill, and also that I would be happy to pay for their service if they in some way added some value to our site, particularly that I would be happy to use it if they brought new traffic to us.
    I was assured that the bill was an error, and that we were part of their free tier, they would indeed be bringing more and better services in the near future, and they re-activated the service.

    A month later we were cut off again. This time there was no explanation, no response to our emails, just the message that our API key was no longer valid, and when I clicked on the button to get a new API code, I received the message “Ooops, it looks like something went wrong. We’re working on it right now.”
    Poor show from Contextly. No communication about this issue, cut off without explanation. After trying for several times over the next few days to get a response from Contextly and to get an new valid API key, we gave up.

    We will be using WordPress’s built in Related Posts from now on, which is free, matches our theme better, can be modified to our needs, and won’t be deactivated on a whim.

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  • Plugin Author rsingel

    (@rsingel)

    “We used Contextly for free quite happily while they developed and tested. Undoubtedly Contextly received some benefit from the data they gathered from our users.”

    FALSE: We do not engage in traffic arbitrage, sell user data, or inject 3rd party data trackers. We take reader privacy seriously. Here is our privacy policy.

    “We were sent a bill two months ago and had the service suddenly cut off. When we signed up to use Contextly it was free, and this was the first time we had ever heard about paying for their service. I switched to the WordPress Jetpack built in related posts plug-in.

    Contextly contacted us and enquired why we had switched off their plug-in. I explaining that it was no longer working, and they had sent us a bill, and also that I would be happy to pay for their service if they in some way added some value to our site, particularly that I would be happy to use it if they brought new traffic to us.
    I was assured that the bill was an error, and that we were part of their free tier, they would indeed be bringing more and better services in the near future, and they re-activated the service.

    A month later we were cut off again. This time there was no explanation, no response to our emails, just the message that our API key was no longer valid, and when I clicked on the button to get a new API code, I received the message “Ooops, it looks like something went wrong. We’re working on it right now.”
    Poor show from Contextly. No communication about this issue, cut off without explanation. After trying for several times over the next few days to get a response from Contextly and to get an new valid API key, we gave up.”

    This client was aware we operated a freemium/premium service for more than 10 months.

    Here is the timeline of emails to this client from our admin system:

    07/22/2015 – API issue
    06/16/2015 – Contextly Suspension in 24 hours – Act Now!
    11/16/2014 – Nerdalicious hasn’t signed up for Personal Plus after 45 days notice
    11/16/2014 – 45-day Contextly Trial expiration notice
    11/01/2014 – Your Contextly trial won’t last much longer
    10/17/2014 – Subscribe to keep Contextly from expiring
    10/01/2014 – Your Contextly Trial Is Expiring Soon
    09/20/2013 – Nerdalicious, welcome to Contextly!

    The client had multiple opportunities to make payment and was never shut off without notice. The client was not at the free-tier traffic level when payment was requested.

    In the final set of correspondence, the client complained that the service was broken without mentioning he’d gotten a invoice/notice of suspension . We said we’d look into it and saw that the client needed to subscribe to re-start service. We sent an email on 7/22 with a subscription link.

    We heard nothing back until this review.

    Thread Starter nerdalicious

    (@nerdalicious)

    After we turned Contextly off upon being surprised by a bill, Contextly contacted us and asked why we had switched them off, I explained that as they didn’t add more than $10 a month in value to our site, I wasn’t willing to pay them $10 a month, and that we were going to use the Jetpack free Related Posts facility instead.

    We received these messages from Contextly,

    You inadvertently got caught in a mistake about billing. You fit in our free tier and we’re happy to keep working with you all on a free basis. We don’t have an automated turn-off.

    So, if you like Contextly, feel free to reinstall and turn it back on. We’re fans of what you are doing and want to help you grow your audience.

    Thanks for the feedback and hope to see you back on Contextly.

    So we did that. Later we were cut off again, with no message, no communication, and exactly at a point where we were receiving viral traffic and the Related Posts plug-in would have proved advantageous.
    I admit my timeline of events is somewhat truncated, however that doesn’t change the essential facts of my report, the lack of communication or explanation from Contextly. I have absolutely no reason whatever to say we didn’t receive notifications from them, other than it is just a fact.

    I contacted them numerous times when the plug-in stopped functioning, no response.

    On this other statement, it seems Contextly can’t read. Nowhere do I say they install trackers or engage in traffic arbitrage. I state that while they were in development and we were using their free service, they undoubtedly used data collected from us and other free users to gather statistics, test and develop their service. That is pretty clear from my statement above, and for Contextly to try to characterize it as something else is FALSE.

    We are now using the Jetpack free Related Posts facility. It works perfectly, with no likelihood of being deactivated without warning.

    Given the treatment, problems, lack of notice, insults and false claims made by Contextly, we would never go back to them even if they added value to our website.

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