So here's a follow-up: I got this message from Tech Support:
I am aware that some customers have an issue with wiping their devices because it will erase all of the information from the device. Again, one of the best features of your Android device however; is the ability, via Google Sync, to restore all of the paid applications, E mail messages, contacts, and calendar entries back to the device automatically. When you log into your G Mail account that you established when you first set up the device or already had from the device after the wipe, the aforementioned information will reappear within about 10 minutes. Unfortunately any free applications will need to be reinstalled.
Power device off
Press and hold VOL Down and Power button at same time until screen displays with 3 androids at the bottom (screen shot)
Press VOL down to highlight Clear Storage, press PWR Button to select option
Screen displays below information (screen shot):
Delete All User Data?
<VOL UP> YES
<VOL DOWN> NO
If these instructions fail to resolve the issue you may call Verizon Wireless Technical Support Department at 800-922-0204 between 6AM and 11PM for live assistance.
I hope this information is helpful with resolving your Backup Assistant concerns, and I hope I provided you excellent customer service.
Please, dear lord, tell me there's an easier way!!!
...past few weeks... pffff! Try since at least October 2010 that Backup Assistant has been flaky.
Go into the People app > press menu > select export. Export all your contacts to the the sd card. You can also export the contacts from Backup Assistant website to csv file. Import either or both into gmail contacts.
To stop the app, hmmm. Factory reset will do the trick. Just have the contacts synced with Google beforehand. You can try clearing the data from the backup assistant application on the phone and force close the app. Of course, have the contacts synced with Google before doing that too.
Not an exact match, but this link should help.