Today, many contracts are signed, and when different types of needs are concerned, different types of contracts appear. Subscription contract is one of these contract types that is frequently used today. A subscription contract can be defined as regular or continuous use of a certain service or product by paying a certain amount. In this type of contract, the buyer has the right to demand a product or service from the other party for a certain period or continuously by paying a certain amount. Although this type of contract is mostly used in electricity, water, natural gas and electronic communication sectors, subscription contracts can also be established in books, magazines, channels and some social media platforms. Since the regulation on subscription agreements arrange the procedures and principles regarding subscription agreements, it will be a guide for this type of contract.
The form requirement of the subscription contract is arranged in the regulation of subscription contracts, and according to this arrangement, it is obligatory to establish a contract between the seller and the consumer regarding the goods or services in question. At the same time, in the same arrangement, the contract must be made in writing and must be given to the consumer. And finally, it is obligatory for these contracts to be at least twelve font size, the language to be understandable, and to be arranged in a clear, plain and readable manner. Again, in the same arrangement, the content of the contract was clarified by specifying the mandatory contents that should be included in the contract. The contents that should be included in the contract are specified in the regulation one by one, and some of which are; names, titles, full addresses, telephones, mersis numbers, if any, and other contact information of the parties, the subject and duration of the contract, if any, the date of the contract, the price of the goods or services.
The effect of the absence of mandatory content in the contract on the validity of the contract is also arranged in the same regulation. In the absence of any or more of the mandatory content according to this regulation, the validity of the contract is not affected by this situation. In such a case, it is accepted that the seller cannot stop the performance of the goods or services in question. If there is a missing element in the contract, it is foreseen that the missing part will be corrected without any extra payment from the other party, that is, the consumer, by the person issuing the contract. If this cannot be achieved, the consumer may annual the contract without making any payment (like compensation).
According to Ahmet Cemal Ruhi (2011) ‘’ Subscription agreement is a contract that creates a continuous debt relationship that imposes debts on both parties.’’ (p. 87). This means that while one party is obliged to provide a product or service in subscription contracts, the other party is obliged to perform the fee for this product or service. In subscription contracts, it is also necessary to mention how the annulment of the contract takes place. The arrangement in the regulation on this subject has been made according to the duration of the contract that is, if the contract periods are different, different applications are made. First, an arrangement was made regarding subscriptions with an indefinite duration or one year and longer duration and in the arrangement, it is stated that in such contracts, the consumer has the right to annual the contract in question without giving any reason and paying penal clauses. Afterwards, it is arranged what will happen in contracts with a duration of less than one year. and in this arrangement, it is stated that the consumer has the right to annual the contract only if the seller changes the terms of the contract or if there is a reason that will prevent the consumer from benefiting from the service. What will be the situation in committed subscriptions will be examined in detail below.
Another important issue to be mentioned about subscription agreements is the committed subscription agreements. Committed subscription agreements can be defined as a type of contract between the seller and the consumer, promising to remain subscribed for a certain period of time, in which a discount can be made in the price of the goods or services that are the subject of the contract, or in which the consumer can acquire the ownership of the goods or services in question. Again, in the subscription agreement regulation, the principles regarding committed subscription agreements are regulated and these regulations are explanatory in terms of this type of agreement. In the same regulation, it is stated that the contract and commitment letter conditions cannot be changed in a way that will adversely affect the consumer during the commitment period. What happens in such subscriptions if they are terminated before the commitment period is also regulated in the aforementioned regulation? According to this regulation, it is stated that in such a case, the price that the seller will demand from the consumer must be limited to the portion of the discount or the price of the device that has not been collected yet by the consumer.
As can be seen, subscription agreements have an important place among contract types and are frequently used. As with every contract type, subscription contracts have their own characteristics and conditions that must be complied with. In the regulation, the procedures and principles of both the subscription agreement and its sub-type, the committed subscription agreement are arranged, these arrangements are very guiding for both types.
1. Ahmet Cemal Ruhi, (2011), Sözleşmeler Hukuku, (p. 87)