Credit cards have become a ubiquitous part of the US consumer culture. It used to be hard to get a credit card; in fact I remember when my family got their first credit card, only to be used for emergencies or while traveling. To run a balance (and accrue interest) was unthinkable; and the American Express card even made you pay off your balance in full every month (you couldn't even "roll over" the debt).
You used to have to pay an annual fee to get a credit card; over the years this has mostly gone by the wayside, and card issuers offer incentives such as a 1% cash back model, airline miles, hotel miles, or memberships such as Costco.
Aside from interest income and transferring balances from card to card, credit card companies make a lot of money from late fees and other charges. The customer contract has grown very complex and dense, and the card companies could change their policies virtually without notice.
Recent laws passed mandate that card issuers have to provide notice of these types of changes and as such, many card companies are sending out letters in the mail notifying card holders about changes in terms. I received one of those letters, below.
My reaction was... f*ck you. This is a terrible way to treat a customer, one with a long history with the company. I think that the same blindness, treating every customer the same, is now effecting my credit card company - by treating every card holder as a potential source of fee income from whom to maximize charges, they are alienating their core card holders that are good, solid customers. Don't forget that there is another source of income for credit card companies, which is the percentage of sales that they earn every time that I use the card to purchase something. Probably in this day and age that amount of money is squat compared to the fees and interest income, which is why they basically could care less about customers like myself.