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FFT: Giveaways

Okay, so as a blogger I really should know more about the FTC. I’m currently researching things, but luckily I stumbled upon a post from I Smell Sheep. With their permission, I’m re-posting their post below.

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Stephanie Schwab wrote an article about bloggers and giveaways and the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) called NEXT CRACKDOWN ON BLOGGERS: SWEEPSTAKES & CONTESTS. Basically bloggers or anyone who holds contests/giveaways needs to make sure they are following the law. There are three kinds of giveaways Stephanie Schawb pointed out:

A Sweepstakes is a giveaway where winners are chosen at random.

A Contest chooses a winner based on some merit: best photo, funniest tip, etc.

A Lottery is a prize drawing where people pay money for a chance to win. Lotteries are even more highly regulated and brands (or bloggers) should never run a lottery without strong legal guidance.

Thus, most giveaways are actually sweepstakes: a winner is chosen at random based on an entry (like leaving a comment).

You also need to check out Facebook’s rules about giveaways. You can find that here.

I would like to thanks Crystal at Reading Between The Wines Book Club for putting together this general giveaway/sweepstakes/contest disclosure. I Smell Sheep will be including this at the bottom of all rafflecopters and a link to this post will be predominately displayed with giveaway rules. A link these rules can also be found in the right side bar with the FTC disclosure.

By entering your name above, you are agreeing to these Official Rules:
1. ELIGIBILITY: Open to legal residents of the (50) United States and Canada who are eighteen years of age or older. All U.S., federal, state and local laws and regulations apply. Void where prohibited by law. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY.
2. SPONSOR: Sponsor name and contact information.
3. AGREEMENT TO OFFICIAL RULES: Participation in the Giveaway constitutes entrant’s full and unconditional agreement to and acceptance of these Official Rules and the decisions of the Sponsor, which are final and binding. Winning a prize is contingent upon fulfilling all requirements set forth herein.
4. ENTRY PERIOD: The start and end dates/times of each Giveaway (the “Entry Period”) will be posted on the Rafflecopter or on the giveaway site.
5. ENTRY: To enter a Giveaway, follow the instructions on the Rafflecopter or on the giveaway site. The number of times you can enter the Giveaway will be posted on the applicable Rafflecopter. The use of any agencies or automated software to submit entries will void all entries submitted by that person.
6. WINNER SELECTION: At the conclusion of the Entry Period, I Smell Sheep (or Sponsor) will select the name(s) of the potential winner(s) in a random drawing of all eligible entries received during the Entry Period (winner(s) may be selected by other methods as described on the Giveaway site). The number of winners to be selected in a specific Giveaway will be posted on the applicable Giveaway site. The odds of being selected as a potential winner depend on the number of eligible entries received during the Entry Period. Potential winners will be contacted via email and will be asked to provide their full name and mailing address within a specified time period. If a potential winner does not respond within the timeframe stated in the notification email, I Smell Sheep (or the Sponsor) may select an alternate potential winner in his/her place at theirs )or the Sponsors) sole discretion.
7. REQUIREMENTS OF THE POTENTIAL WINNERS: Except where prohibited, the potential winners may be required to complete and return an affidavit of eligibility and liability/publicity release (the “Affidavit/Release”) within seven (7) days of being notified. If a potential winner fails to sign and return the Affidavit/Release within the required time period, an alternate entrant will be selected in his/her place in a random drawing of all entries received. Acceptance of a prize constitutes consent to use winner’s name and likeness for editorial, advertising and publicity purposes without additional compensation, except where prohibited by law.
8. PRIZE(S): The prize(s) (including each prize’s approximate retail value) available to be won in a specific Giveaway will be posted on the Giveaway site. No cash or other substitution may be made, except by the Sponsor, who reserves the right to substitute a prize with another prize of equal or greater value if the prize is not available for any reason as determined by the Sponsor in its sole discretion. The winners are responsible for any taxes and fees associated with receipt or use of a prize.
9. RELEASE AND LIMITATIONS OF LIABILITY: By participating in the Giveaway, entrants agree to release and hold harmless the Giveaway Entities and Facebook from and against any claim or cause of action arising out of participation in the Giveaway or receipt or use of any prize, including, but not limited to: (a) unauthorized human intervention in the Giveaway; (b) technical errors related to computers, servers, providers, or telephone or network lines; (c) printing errors; (d) lost, late, postage-due, misdirected, or undeliverable mail; (e) errors in the administration of the Giveaway or the processing of entries; or (f) injury or damage to persons or property which may be caused, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from entrant’s participation in the Giveaway or receipt of any prize. Entrant further agrees that in any cause of action, the Giveaway Entities’ liability will be limited to the cost of entering and participating in the Giveaway, and in no event shall the Giveaway Entities be liable for attorney’s fees. Entrant waives the right to claim any damages whatsoever, including, but not limited to, punitive, consequential, direct, or indirect damages.

thank you to Reading Between the Wines

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And thank you to I Smell Sheep for letting me re-post that, as well as Crystal for allowing me to use her rules (with modifications) for my blog as well. Be sure to check my my giveaway policy for any giveaway rules!

Also, if you noticed the new FFT banner, it’s by Tynga and I’ll be using it for more serious news, compared to just ramblings on my blog 🙂

Yours,
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