MarketingShift has a cautionary tale about shady dealings from a company called ZipWeb. John Gartner writes:
"...the telemarketer insisted it was a risk-free 30 day trial and that we would have great placement on MSN, Google and Yahoo. I'm wary of these "something for nothing" free trials having been burned several times, but since I wasn't asked for a credit card numbered I figured it wouldn't cost me anything. Surprise! This month my phone bill -- my phone bill! -- had a charge of $49.95 from PaymentOne.com, whom I'd never heard of before."
Gartner says he never authorized the charge, got no leads during the "free trial" which of course turned out not to be free, and was unable to get the charge removed from the phone bill.
As search and online directories become more practical for the local merchant, we're bound to see more of this. Sometimes honest misunderstandings. Sometimes predatory tactics. I'll let you know if I find out more about which this was.