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Get paypal to prevent older paypal recurring from sending inaccurate cancel email
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Paypal needs to do this for us. Can someone in fr-tech start the email thread with all the technical information we have available and make a recommendation?

RE: T235022

Older recurring donors will still get an email from paypal saying that we canceled their recurring payment. We were able to stop new ones going forward. This task is to investigate what it would take to fix older recurring charges.

Event Timeline

DStrine renamed this task from investigate preventing older paypal recurring from sending inaccurate cancel email to Get paypal tp prevent older paypal recurring from sending inaccurate cancel email.Oct 29 2019, 8:06 PM
DStrine updated the task description. (Show Details)
DStrine renamed this task from Get paypal tp prevent older paypal recurring from sending inaccurate cancel email to Get paypal to prevent older paypal recurring from sending inaccurate cancel email.Oct 29 2019, 8:48 PM
DStrine moved this task from Sprint +1 to Current Sprint on the Fundraising-Backlog board.

Just for the record, what we're wanting here is for PayPal to mass update our recurring subscriptions everyone gets infinite retries. We don't think there's any kind of API for us to do that from our end.

What would be helpful in terms of donor-facing messaging is anything we can do to prevent Paypal from sending messaging saying that we canceled the recurring donation. I am unsure about what modifying the number of retries really means, and whether there are adverse consequences to that. Is it possible that T230064: generate generic email for failed recurring donations will make this task unnecessary?

@MBeat33 setting the number of retries to unlimited is the mechanism we're using to suppress the PayPal email saying we canceled it. They didn't have a better way to offer us to accomplish that.

T230064 should make this unnecessary, but there would still be the outside chance that we'd miss enough cancellation IPN messages to invoke the PayPal email.

Presuming we still want to do this before we get to T230064, first steps are to contact PayPal and ask them to set MAXFAILEDATTEMPTS to 0 on all existing recurring subscriptions. @EMartin @MBeat33 Who is the best person at PayPal to contact, and which one of us should reach out?

Thanks, @XenoRyet as long as setting MAXFAILEDATTEMPTS to 0 won't affect anything adversely (in terms of how or whether the recurring donations process), I'm for it. I'm not sure whether fr-tech or Evelyn would be better to reach out to PayPal if we go forward on this, maybe it could be driven by the level of tech talk involved?

@MBeat33 The change shouldn't have any adverse effects, and could even have positive ones. Basically PayPal will just keep trying to process the donation every month, so it'll either keep failing due to the expired card, or if the donor updates their card it'll resume normally.

I shall resurrect the previous thread on this topic so we loop in the
engineer we had a call with on this subject,Dylan.

Dylan Kozlowski
10:28 AM (20 minutes ago)
to Merchant,,,, me,

Hi Magarvin,

We actually had one additional technical question. It was suggested that setting MAXFAILEDATTEMPTS to 0 would allow recurring subscriptions to retry indefinitely and thus functionally suppress the email in question. We've implemented that for new subscriptions, but we're also wanting already existing subscriptions to be modified the same way. We're not seeing a way to do a bulk update like that. Is that something your team can help us with? That would buy us some time with our existing donors while we develop our custom email based on the IPN messages.


Paypal's response:

Unfortunately we are not able to make changes to a merchant's recurring payments from here. However, we do offer UpdateRecurringPaymentsProfile API that can be used to update the MAXFAILEDPAYMENTS value on existing recurring profiles. This will help you make the change via the API so you do not have to manually login to to change it.

Sounds like our only option would be to write a custom script of some sort to iterate through existing subscriptions to make the change. That would be a pretty large chunk of work to try to squeeze in just now.

@mbeattie Paypal supressed these emails and there should no longer be an issue. Donor Services should confirm.