Putting the No in Noom
I used Noom years ago as attempt #23098 at losing weight. Didn’t click for me. I really despise having little tasks that I gotta do, like log food. I know food logs are super effective. It’s even worked for me a few times in the past, but I still hate it. There were 2-3 other things I didn’t like about Noom at least. The motivational stuff felt a little patronizing and childish. The part about having a real person coach seemed fake. I don’t remember all the details it was long enough ago.
It absolutely does work for some people though. It’s wildly popular and I’ll submit that it wouldn’t be if it was entirely bogus. I listened to Sam Anderson on The Daily the other day and it worked for him. That was a good story, by the way, and confirms some of my memories:
The core of Noom’s personality is that it is always trying very, very, very hard. Sometimes my phone will flash, and I’ll think I have a text or a news alert, but it will just be Noom saying something like, “We’re blinded by your 51st meal in a row glow up 🤩,” or, “Batter up (but hold the batter 😉). It’s time to log Dinner.” Every morning, Noom gives me little quizzes about nutrition and water intake and caloric density, and whenever I guess right, it says corny words like “Noomalicious!” and then rewards me for my achievements with NoomCoins that move a piece on a game board as if I were a child playing Candy Land.I’ve Always Struggled With My Weight. Losing It Didn’t Mean Winning.
When it came time to cancel, it was super hard. Like canceling your cable TV hard! I remember being ultra pissed about that. That’s betrayal. The app is supposed to care about you. That’s the brand of it. That’s the whole thing. They want you to feel like they are in your corner, helping you be a better you. To cancel, I seem to remember I had to call, wait on hold, deal with someone talking you out of it, etc. An app like that does not care about you. They care about churn. They don’t give any poop about making you a better you. In fact, what they really want is you to subscribe for the rest of your life. An app (e.g. a business comprised of human beings) that cared about you would understand if you wanted to cancel for any reason. Imagine you had a financial crisis — Noom does not care to help you through that.
Anyway, I thought of all this because there was a class action thing about all this, and apparently, I’m still annoyed enough years later that I totally got in on it.
A Settlement has been reached in a proposed class action against Noom, Inc. (“Noom”). The case alleges that Noom’s autorenewal and cancellation practices violated both common law and consumer protection laws nationwide. Noom denies these allegations and any wrongdoing and maintains that its autorenewal and cancellation practices were at all times lawful.
I’ll take my damn $30.