Karl, while I agree that it would help if service details were made obvious beforehand, I also believe that no rights should be granted without responsibilities. Yes, I’m talking copyright here. Right now copyright owners have no obligations to the general public whatsoever, and this allows them to get away with a lot of damage dealt to the public interest.
This is one of those cases — and with the growth of “IoT” number of such incidents will only grow. In fact, we as customers give up a lot of control over our lives to the companies which bear no responsibility to keep customers unharmed.
Also, I believe that a simple refund won’t do. Vendor is unable to refund effort and time contributed by customer towards the use of the product. Imagine for a second that you bought bricks to build your house and then suddenly (a couple of years later) your brick vendor sends in people to break all the bricks you bought from them. Would you really appreciate this? Would you if they told you beforehand??
We often hear that intellectual property is “just like physical property”. If so, we as buyers of products must be able to use it in the same way. Even if your vendor suddenly disappears into thin air. Or if your vendor tries to intentionally damage your property (actually, then they should be liable to criminal charges).