Sweepin for Traffic

I sat here writing endlessly on how to broach this topic tactfully, tastefully, and with bold tenacity. Only to come out empty handed and having the audience of readers say, “huh?” So while no tact may exist I will pour out the information. Some of you may have read a wonderful article on ShePosts.com. I was rather skeptical of ShePosts thinking the site was to stir the pot, cause drama, get mommy bloggers riled, and I am happy to report I was wrong. I feel the authors provide fabulous unbiased, or with as little bias as possible, on important topics that affect the business of mommy blogging or blogging.

The article on ShePosts quickly touched on ethics and what bloggers can do about their ethics of giveaways on their blog.

My take… I loved it. I ENJOYED with my WHOLE HEART being the “anonymous” to out these “ethical” blog badge toting liars. I have proof of bloggers, LOTS of bloggers, agreeing to forge giveaways. Unfortunately too, I was the recipient of a forged giveaway and found out months after the fact. This DID NOT sit well with me. The idea did not sit well with me, the knowledge I had, that bloggers think this sort of behavior is perfectly acceptable stirred a FIRE in me. But more and more “mommy bloggers” are positioning themselves and acting like untouchable prima donnas, “It’s my blog…SO THERE! I can say and do whatever I want.”

Go right on ahead then honey because when the feds intervene, when state law governing sweepstakes intervene, I will be sure to grab some popcorn. Because I spoke about this issue once, about whether the sweep was a sham, and I was right then, I am right now. Bloggers are rigging their giveaways for winners based on whom THEY want to win, not by chance. Which technically if you as a blogger are conducting yourself in such a manner you are violating federal and state sweepstakes laws by crossing into lottery territory.

“A promotion may be characterized as a lottery if it has all three of the following elements:

I can tell you that those elements would qualify certain bloggers sweeps as lotteries, which are federally regulated and ONLY allowed by states on a discretionary level, so in a morons terms, you just shit all over yourself by violating BIG laws. Forget the FTC, you now have the FCC on your hands for communications violations, the Department of Justice for conspiracy, maybe racketeering if they feel frisky . I will also tell you that giveaways that are held in a CLOSED forum only where you have to be a member and members are only allowed by consideration of the administrator (on whether she likes you or not), well those “giveaways” are now a lottery and up for federal game to investigate if anyone (like me) wanted to blow the whistle on a community providing such an event.

Copyright of MomDot.com

Oh and holding live giveaways on a Blog Talk Radio channel for which again, the above elements are met, are considered a violation of federal law under the 1995 Crime Bill passed by President Clinton, as EVERYONE has to have an opportunity to enter the giveaway. Just sayin’.

Blogging and holding giveaways in this fashion is UNETHICAL. Period. Really, why bother with all the time and effort required in posting a giveaway, listing the giveaway, and promoting if you plan to rig the event for someone you like. Additionally, you are falsifying your stats as a blogger by generating inflation for the sake of premium opportunities with PR and for a “friend” to receive the item because of your comfort level, “rather than some misc. stranger.” Sure, we would not want to run the sweep by chance, just consideration right? Moreover, an “equal dignity” requirement applies.

Discrimination can not be present in treatment of sweepstakes entrants. Those who give some consideration to enter, either by making a payment or by exerting significant effort, may not be treated differently, or more favorably, than those who do not provide consideration. The odds of winning must be substantially similar for both. If the two groups are treated differently, the differential could create pressure for entrants to give consideration, and thus might transform the sweepstakes into an illegal lottery (Bennett, 2007)

So while ethics are pulled into question about giveaways, how about the entrants? I personally am curious as to how they feel about the situation. Spending time entering into giveaways for what they believe is an equal chance to win a prize only to be duped into providing page hits and unique visitor counts daily all in the name of fraud. Or would it be in the name of traffic.

Furthermore, why not notify bloggers sponsors of their behavior, their conduct? What makes these bloggers, no matter how “big” they think they are in the echelon of sorority hens, above the law? Above any code of ethical conduct? Who will hold these bloggers accountable? Or will other bloggers react indignantly, as envious high school snots, who believe they have some intangible form of entitlement to do whatever the f&*k they please? Will they say “Oh they’re just jealous”? Jealous? Of two years minimum prison time for conspiracy to defraud? Thanks, but no thanks to Leavenworth. I love the rolling hills of Kansas, but not that much.

My question to you, who will be the checks and balances? Should the government increase their involvement more with mommy bloggers? Should a guild, a quorum no less, of bloggers be built to uphold ethical standards among giveaway blogs and promotions? Or should we go on as business as usual, despite the rampant occurrences of rigged giveaways and winners.

These badges too that are colorfully displayed widgets, mean DIDDLY SHIT! Nothing. Nada. Why? No one and I do mean no one…including the creators of these cute little backlink widgets are doing NOTHING to enforce. Period. Unless the individual displaying the badge is holding him or herself to a higher moral standard, which clearly…we see they are not. I hope to post some good signs of what might be considered a legit giveaway blog, what might not be considered legit, signs to look for when entering giveaways on a blog. Also look to see if your blogger is consistently posting winners, do they post re-draws? A lot of infrequent due to lack of response?

And then you wonder why no one takes a “mommy blogger” seriously at her job.

How can they when she or he is running amok rigging giveaways. Forget all the catty minutiae with back-biting over what broad got to go to what event or who is whatever brand ambassador, this is serious business and the time has come to actually treat the issue as such. Time to own up and grow up.

**Here is my time to own up and grow up.

I got involved with a girl, yes a girl, and she became a friend. You know her, I know her. She WAS my friend. I defended her many times, I became a human friend shield when others attacked her. Until one day she said I was lazy and talked shit behind my back and I had enough of her petty, juvenile, sociopath behavior. Dumb. Why? Because no matter how much I felt she was self-absorbed, immature, and selfish I never said a bad thing about her. I always told her to her face. But the kicker is that now I am being attacked by her pathetic other half for this post and one other because I have an intelligent opinion. My opinion.

Furthermore, the information about the “cheaters” includes her. Did you know that the email transference that outs a blogger listed above in photos also includes this individual? Yes. She was rather eager to provide me the info and took the item being given away to boot. I can also say that the headers were eliminated from the emails that this person sent me, maybe to protect her own ass or maybe because she doesn’t know how. Regardless,  she too is just as guilty. I will also say that this post was never in any attempt to damage anyone, but to bring light to a situation that is/was rampant in the little immature community known as “mommy blogging.”  Clearly the situation is one to keep under the carpet, like addiction. The big pink elephant that everyone knows is there but won’t say or do anything about it.  Regardless, I wrote this, I stick by it. I never back down. I just clarify.

So for clarity’s sake, if you want to know the blogger let me know and I would be happy to do a WHOLE post, because that’s how I roll.

Karie Herring

Karie Herring
74 comments… add one
  • Dana (Lily Bean Designs) Apr 17, 2010, 2:52 pm

    Lots of great information in there! Good writing!

  • Rose @ NetWorkingWitches Apr 17, 2010, 3:06 pm

    When I go to bed and rest my head, I know without a doubt the ethics and standards that Joie and I uphold.
    I rest well at night now, and I will rest well later.

    I’m at peace with my conscience, and the standards to which we run our blog.

    These bloggers that you speak of, are nasty little critters. They have clearly displayed that. I doubt that their nastiness begins or ends with a blog. I have no doubt that this is how they represent themselves, family, blog, and their children.
    It’s their choice to walk around like a group of assholes, right? Isn’t that a choice?

    • admin Apr 17, 2010, 8:07 pm

      Choice is powerful is it not Rose? 😉

      Life is all about choices and the consequences that are a direct result.

  • Winter Apr 17, 2010, 3:45 pm

    I was told by a sponsor that a user had already won from them on another blog and to pick another winner. I said no. They have since changed their wording and we lost them as a sponsor.

    I would rather LOSE them as a sponsor than to feel I have cheated someone. I have won from one of the above mentioned bloggers and when sides were taken and we were not on theirs did not receive. I am NOT a whiney boo boo baby and could care less but my point is they do this to people and it’s not legal.

    I have had many users ask what we do with items we don’t like as they are not posted on our blog. I think it is our responsibility to tell the truth and items I do not like I have emailed the sponsor and refuse to post them.

    You know who is going to be punished by this? The people that play by the rules. Do what they are supposed to.

    • admin Apr 17, 2010, 8:05 pm

      Winter you are so RIGHT! I too won from multiple bloggers on a giveaway. I confronted the bloggers and they passed my info onto the sponsor. I never heard a word…I finally contacted the sponsor (Mystic Wonders if you all want to know) and NOTHING. They completely had nothing to say to me about their policies of winning on multiple blogs. Which in fact is not a policy, at least not a written policy stated to bloggers or winners. I think that the sponsors should start to own up now too…in fact I will refuse to work with a sponsor who will not clearly point out their policies and specifics, because NO WAY in hell will I be left holding the bag to take the fall for their failure to disclose. I disclose….now time they do too!

  • Mrs. Cox Apr 17, 2010, 3:55 pm

    I might have to make myself a button … Hmm! Great info Karie, thank you for sharing. I know this post must have taken a lot of time and reflection for you.

    • admin Apr 17, 2010, 8:01 pm

      Erin I too have thought about making myself one that says something fabulous and not some cookie cutter I believe in ethical blogging, just not when it comes to giveaways. The post took me being able to confide in a wonderful mentor for trust and courage to put this post together. Thank you so much!

  • Jennifer-Eighty MPH Mom Apr 17, 2010, 5:48 pm

    I think there are good and bad bloggers (as far as rigging giveaways goes), but I do believe the majority are honest about picking winners. As was said above, I rest easy at night, knowing I have made someone’s day (legitimately) by Random.org picking their number.

    I wish we could also be certain that entrants aren’t cheating…that happens a lot as well, and it is time consuming to check entries, but worth it to know I am being honest with the entrants who have put time and effort into entering my giveaways.

    • admin Apr 17, 2010, 7:59 pm

      Jen you know what I can sleep every night with EVERYTHING I do in life, especially with my blog and with sweepstakes and anything that can be considered law and or lawful.

      I too agree that good and bad bloggers exist and that is unfortunate that we even have bad ones or shall I call them questionable with their actions. Because they may be good people with shit decisions. Plain and simple. I also am happy to say I use random.org and I have been known to delete entries on giveaways BUT I have ALWAYS emailed the entrant to inform them of my action so that I am fair.

  • Badger Mom Apr 17, 2010, 6:16 pm

    Wow. I really had no clue that people were doing this. That’s really low. And to think that there’s written proof of at least a couple of individuals breaking the law? Just wow. I don’t even know what else to say. And that in itself, says a lot for me.

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 7:58 pm

      Jenine, what’s funny is that I did not go out looking for anything specific. I had some information at my hands and I also had information that I researched mainly through forums about the topic. I thank did an organic google search and received ALL SORTS of results. Just sad that people carry no integrity.

  • Ellen Beck Apr 17, 2010, 7:16 pm

    Karie you write so well.. you know I had never seen the evidence, and it makes me ill to think that has happened….
    I detest lairs and cheats on either side of the table.

  • Susan Smith Apr 17, 2010, 9:11 pm

    Thanks for speaking out. I’ve noticed and think they need to clean up their act. It’s despicable and I hope they stop. They should be ashamed.

    • admin Apr 17, 2010, 9:13 pm

      Susan you are right…many bloggers need to clean up their act. Unfortunately these two happened to be the most blatant examples of UNETHICAL and fraudulent behavior.

  • Veronica Apr 17, 2010, 9:31 pm

    Great post…very informative! I too have entered contests in the past and wondered if they’ve been rigged. I guess I should have listened to that gut feeling. It’s sad that bloggers are stooping to this level!

    • admin Apr 17, 2010, 9:59 pm

      Veronica, we so want to believe that everyone is on the up-and-up and the reality is that people are greedy and selfish. I know I LOVE when anyone enters and wins for a chance to win. If up to me, I would love for everyone to have the item that I am giving away.

  • Vanessa Apr 17, 2010, 9:40 pm

    I’m realativly new to the review/giveaway blogging world. I am shocked to hear that bloggers do this! It honestly saddens me as I find it a real blessing to be able to bless someone else with an item I know they so desperately want and have worked hard (by entering) for. Yes, I have friends/family members enter my giveaways, but to date, none of them have won one of my giveaways. And I’m ok with that and so are they. To me, the joy is just in offering a giveaway, or an honest review to someone. Whether it be a friend/family who wins, I don’t care…I just like the joy in seeing someone else get a product for free.

    This does make me think though…I won one giveaway and have yet to see the prize. When I e-mailed the blogger, he sent me a very odd response back. I’ve e-mailed again and haven’t heard a response. I think I’m going to give up..sigh.

    • admin Apr 17, 2010, 9:57 pm

      Vanessa I am so sorry to hear this. You know I have been doing the reviews and giveaways for only a year and blogging for well over two. I can say that I LOVE to see my winners emails. I save the ones that state “No way I won!?” Because this warms my heart. I think in these tough economic times I am ever so thankful for the opportunity to review, giveaway and at times I have given away my review items to families that are much more in need than myself.

      If I were you HOUND that blogger and don’t give up, better yet, contact the sponsor and if you need help doing so let me know. I know I send out emails for people to respond and I prefer a response within 72 hours but give a week for final word due to schedules in peoples lives. If I NEVER get an answer, I move on and pull a new winner, or donate the giveaway item if it is an item I am at liberty to ship. Hang in there and if you need anything, there are honest bloggers who are willing to help.

      • Vanessa Apr 18, 2010, 12:41 pm

        Thanks so much for your kind response. I feel the same way as you about the winners. It’s fun to see the replies I get to them winning. I love that when people are so excited about it! 🙂

        You too have made me re-think about not trying to get my prize. I think I will keep trying! If I need any help, I’ll let you know! 🙂

  • kristin Apr 18, 2010, 8:24 am

    You know those things to vote are rigged too. Even the Facebook ones. How hard is it to create a new Facebook account?

  • LindsayDianne Apr 18, 2010, 8:33 am

    I really like you when you no longer give a shit, Karie.

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 7:59 pm

      I never gave a shit to begin with…I tried…and failed.

  • Susan S Apr 18, 2010, 8:49 am

    I think we all know there are dishonest people out there, but I had no idea that some sponsors wouldn’t send a prize. I LOVE random.org and will be using that for my giveaways. I was thinking about starting an “honest contest blog” page, but there is really no way to start a page with “honest blogs” because people could vouch for their friends and family.

    Thanks for this article! I know that I have won randomly from a couple of blogs and LOVE the feeling of winning. I wouldn’t want to take that feeling away from anyone.

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 8:12 pm

      Susan, what’s even WORSE is that when you contact the sponsor about why they never sent the prize, which in my case was Mystic Wonders – they told me they would look into it and I NEVER got a response. Needless to say, I would never work with them and their product in my opinion sucks. I am all about being green, but I do like my clothes to “appear” clean and “smell” clean like with a standard fabric detergent; which I happen to use a eco-friendly type.

  • Jessie Apr 18, 2010, 8:51 am

    I just love entering contests when I have time. I have often wondered if they were legit. The 1 giveaway I had on my blog I only had 22 people enter so Violet helped me to pick a winner lol 🙂 What a simple dork I am. Saw the Jambu shoes on your sidebar – did I miss that giveaway 🙂 They are on my very long wish list. I am glad that you are so happy in your new job Karie. I always look forward to coming here and seeing what is up with you 🙂 Take care mama!

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 8:16 pm

      Jessie, I love and adore your blog. I always have, so refreshing and we have so much in common. I too wonder on giveaways and their legitimacy as I am seeing a decline. Maybe too many lately? Maybe people are burned out? I also love you are a simple lady! As for the sidebar, they purchased advertising…still waiting for their payment. I am giving them one more week….then removing the ad for failure to pay.

      I am loving the new job…something I am passionate about and I can totally rock in my sleep. Not to mention, I am part of a team that is on the brink of rebuilding our nations economy and saving peoples homes, who couldn’t be stoked for that! Love you woman! xoxo 🙂

  • Rose @ NetWorkingWitches Apr 18, 2010, 11:39 am
  • Jennifer B Apr 18, 2010, 12:20 pm

    I am so thankful for honest outspoken people like you! I enter blog contests and I know some are legit, because I don’t know them and have won. But now I am going to be very careful. This is so sad and disgusting. I actually subscribe to a blog you mentioned above and and very upset. I will be cutting off of all ties.
    Thank you so much for this post. If only more bloggers would stand up like you did.

  • abitnerdy Apr 18, 2010, 12:49 pm

    Great posts. Saddens me to read that this is going on though. Kudos for bravely and effectively putting it out there. I am not a mommy blogger, but I do enter a few blog giveaways and run a few so this information does effect me. Thank you 🙂

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:39 pm

      Nerdy Girl, thanks so much for your feedback. The purpose was to bring to light the issue and not the offenders. Thanks again!

  • Patty Apr 18, 2010, 12:53 pm

    *sigh*
    I am somewhat new to reviews/giveaways but I always use random.org for my winners.
    Sometimes I have to random several times to get to 5 winners for the book giveaways.
    It’s so sad that this happens. But there always seems to be people who are out to get more than their due.
    I also get very excited by my winners emails.
    Heck, I still get excited when I get something to give away….

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:39 pm

      Patty, I do the same thing so that I never get the same number twice and allow for even winners. I too am like you and enjoy letting people know they won. Thanks so much for your feedback.

  • Chacoy Apr 18, 2010, 1:48 pm

    I haven’t run accross a lot of information like this-once on another blog. The bloggers were selling their review items on facebook;{
    I have held a handful of giveaway’s on blog and most of them I purchased myself. That being said I also love the delight/happiness that I bring to someone when they win because I know how happy and delighted I am when I win;} I also try to be really tactful when entering/winning. I always write the blogger and sometimes the sponsor if they include a “statement” in the product that I have won and let them know how I appreciate the giveaway and their sponsorship of the product, I think the blogger and sponsor like to know that what they do is appreciated.
    I am now going to start being more aware of which ones I enter as not to waist my time.
    I have also entered a contest on a blog and never received my item, and I am usually not the type to email them and tell them, but I did, the blog was very gracious and sent me the companies info- I received an email back from the company and they said they were taking care of it and if I had any “problems” to email them, well I still haven’t reveived my product and think that this specific company wanted her sales and traffic to go up- well I was really excited about this product and because of my experience have told my family and friends to NEVER buy anything from them/her! I just can’t seem to bring myself to post it on my blog.
    I just hop that these blogger don’t ruin it for the rest of us!!
    Thank you for the helpful information;}

  • Krystyn Apr 18, 2010, 4:19 pm

    It’s so sad that people are doing this. While I love it when my consistent readers win, I also love it when new readers win, too. I get to meet fun new people and they get joy out of knowing they won.

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:38 pm

      Krystyn, I am with you there! I love to see someone’s response to a winning and I love to pull winners regardless of the time involved, which is rather daunting with going back and forth between random.org and the post and screen shotting the winner comment and the random.org comment.

      What’s sad is that people even want to do this sort of behavior.

  • Amy Apr 18, 2010, 5:35 pm

    Great posts. Saddens me to read that this is going on though. Kudos for bravely and effectively putting it out there. I am not a mommy blogger, but I do enter a few blog giveaways and run a few so this information does effect me. Thank you 🙂

  • Jaque Apr 18, 2010, 5:55 pm

    Finally, a well stated truth…truths!

    Thank you.:-)

  • Sheila B Apr 18, 2010, 6:28 pm

    I am someone who enters the giveaways but also enjoys quite a few of the blogs I have found thru the giveaways.You ladies (and a couple of guys )have taught me so much about saving money and lots of other things. I always enter like I am required to do and was a little leary of a couple of the blogs because of things I have seem. There is one blogger who is winning 10-15 prizes a week which makes me a little suspicious and several times the same person is winning several giveaways on the same blog which is also a little funny. True she has a blog so she gets those extra entries but can she really be that lucky? I know that there isnt a rule that you cant win several times from the same blog but gee can that really happen over and over again? Make those of us who are entering wonder if the blogs are really worth the time and effort (and it does take alot of time for the extra entries) to even visit some of the blogs. So there are a few blogs that I wont even visit any more. I wish every one lived their life with integrity like most of you ladies do!

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:34 pm

      Sheila, if you want, I will do a post that allows you to anonymously list the blogger in question and I think we as a community should review their actions. It’s one thing to be a professional sweeper and another to be a career liar.

      Thanks so much for your feedback, I truly appreciate it and will be in contact with you via email. 🙂

  • wendy wallach Apr 18, 2010, 9:44 pm

    I have worked too hard to get my blog where it is to fake anything. I wish someone would open a service to pick winners from blog giveaways independent of he sponsor or blog owner. I have some ideas how to do this myself…anyone interested in talking to me?

    Wendy
    It’s Really Only a Purple World

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:31 pm

      Wendy, good for you on working hard and I believe that a lot of bloggers started out working hard, but over time have found a way to cheat the system, to fluff numbers, and unfortunately, those who pay are the ones who do work hard. We suffer the consequences of their lies and deceit. This is not even about opps more than it is about integrity.

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:33 pm

      I would also like to talk to you about the independent idea….something to pitch outside to people of blogging. Maybe speak to a compliance officer with state lotteries and get feedback from them as to how they would suggest the process. Thanks for the feedback too!

      • Brandi Apr 19, 2010, 8:20 pm

        I LOVE this idea. If you two go forward with it, or even Wendy if you go forward by yourself with it, please keep me in the loop. I would love to have a service to turn to to pick my winners for me! This would be a great way to take a little of the pressure of doing R & G’s off the bloggers, and let the winners sleep better as well.

  • Ellen Apr 18, 2010, 11:45 pm

    I posted at Rose’s site too- longer mind you as I had more sleep 🙂

    If there are others out there doing this, could you include more info?
    That way, if we choose to unfollow them on Twitter/GF/FB etc and let their numbers drop we can do so.

    Thx!

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:30 pm

      Ellen….You know I love you woman and you know I will do a post where people can come here anon and put in a Mr. Linky their linky love of those bloggers they feel are questionable and I would be more than happy to investigate and let them say their peace. But the problem is…they just turn up their noses, feel they are above the law and ignore. Eventually, they won’t be able to ignore the issue. I also have to email you….I started the other night and fell asleep. Love you lady!

  • Dana N Apr 19, 2010, 4:02 am

    I, for one, am not a blogger, nor do I understand the whole concept of blogging (and choose not to). I do, however, enter contests as a hobby. I have found that I don’t care for entering blog contest, I have on occasion, but it is not for me. I have notice that not only the bloggers, but companies, have jumped on the Twitter wagon and there are contests ALL over the place. I do believe that the same thing goes on within Twitterville. Some of these companies/bloggers are awarding their prizes based on favoritism (or maybe because one person over the other has more followers, and therefore can get them more followers). As someone that to does this as a hobby – I really feel very strongly that there should be federal intervention and regulations set for all areas of contests. But unless enough noise is made by enough people, it may be a while before we see some changes being made.
    (just my two sense)
    and thank you for posting this – and I too, wish you (or someone) would post the bloggers/companies that are not awarding fairly – as I think there is something to be said by the numbers.

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:29 pm

      Dana you are SO right that companies are just as much to blame as the bloggers. The companies only want to work with people who have the stats to support the traffic and advertising opportunities of a review and giveaway, so bloggers are driven by these offers by companies. I used to enter giveaways and now…I do not.
      1. Because I am a blogger and I think that because I am a review/giveaway blogger who has opportunities I pass on entering now to allow others (who do not blog) the opportunity to win. (Just me…just my decision)
      2. I think that MANY and I do mean MANY bloggers are not holding themselves to a higher standard because let’s face it, they are greedy.

      Federal intervention will come, due to the large influx of bloggers and scams and frauds, but RIGHT NOW, the government has bigger fish to fry than a bunch of ninny, bitchy stay at home moms who have no other life than THEIR BLOG and their virtual friends.

      I will post more about this subject tonight and other players, but in a tactful and tasteful manner, just like this post.

      • Brandi Apr 19, 2010, 8:17 pm

        Okay, I am being nosy and reading other comments. LOL Two things…I am the same as you. I don’t really enter giveaways anymore. Every once in awhile I will, but it is so few and far between. I feel the same, I am have this amazing opportunity to try the products myself, why go take someone else’s chance at winning it?! Second-not to get in the IRL and VF fued, but for me personally, I have made some awesome friends virtually. I don’t have many friends IRL, because of moving so much in the past. Plus I have a hard time trusting people IRL to not use me, long story. So my VFs are my friends. You and Bridgette are two of the best I have met. I know I can talk to either of you about anything and you won’t mind the rant. I’m not a bitchy SAHM though. Then again if you read my post today you might think otherwise! LOL

        • admin Apr 20, 2010, 6:25 am

          Brandi….you know I adore you! My VF’s are my friends too, but not to the point where I would carry the same opinion as them to save face, my blog, and my reputation. I’ll email you…oh wait…I have to reply…we must talk! love you lady!!

  • Idaho Jill Apr 19, 2010, 12:18 pm

    I am just appalled. I have read about this happening, but have never seen anyone have the..ahem…balls…to tell who it is that is rigging giveaways. I do some giveaways. I post about giveaways. My hobby is entering sweeps and giveaways. But seriously, I could never ever live with myself if I cheated. I looked at an answer in grade school on a test one time – I still remember it – it’s the only time I have ever cheated in my life because, well, if I still remember THAT, how would I live with myself if I were to continue cheating?

    I read a comment one time that someone videotaped themselves picking a winner. I may do that, just so no one thinks I am cheating. I enter a lot of giveaways – it’s probably best that I DON’T know if some of them are rigged or not. Jeez. I have to agree with Jennifer above, though – I have to believe that most are honest. Have to! 🙂

    As for people entering my giveaways, I have never checked to see if they COULD be cheating – my giveaways are pretty small though. I do get their IP addresses emailed me from my host, so maybe I will check some of those…hmmmm…

    Lots of things to think about – thanks for the info!

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:23 pm

      Jill thanks so much for your candid response and I think like you said we are just appalled. I too was until I started digging into the subject further. Honestly I did not want to dig because eventually I will lose online relationships that I have, but in the long run, those relationships mean nothing, they have no bearing on my life and really, I could shut this blog down tomorrow and I would not be hurt AT ALL!

      I really like the idea of videotaping winners, what a great way to vlog and uphold a strong level of ethics. Thanks so much for your feedback.

  • Toni Apr 19, 2010, 1:39 pm

    Great post Kari as I said already on facebook. I like you know my integrity and ethics I don’t need a badge to know I am honest. Unfortunately not everyone has those but I don’t have to live with the guilt..obviously those that rig or pick their friends to win can live with that. Not I says the kitty, won’t be happening at my place.

    • Toni Apr 19, 2010, 1:43 pm

      Oh and I too have been the winner of a rigged for lack of a better word (not the person mentioned in your post just so every one knows) and while I know the intentions were meant to be good and kind on the persons part it made me question their every ethic, I won’t name them because I am not going to do the whole naming them publicly its not worth my time really. But it did make me realize I don’t know if I will enter on their site anymore because they pick friends or people they think deserve the prize and even if the intentions are good it’s still cheating.

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:20 pm

      Toni, the thing with this post was not to “out” anyone in particular because I have LOADS more to out if I really want to get specific, but I think this is a matter of calling attention to something that has gone on FAR too long and people are ignoring. So those who are questioning me as a source…well that’s their guilt eating them. They also are the nay sayers who will talk smack and never comment, only because they know I am right.

      • Toni Apr 19, 2010, 2:28 pm

        Great points again sweetie :). I agree if someone is questioning you as a source then yep they are feeling guilty LOL. And the smack talkers for some reason free speech is okay until it rains on their parade I guess. And yes contest rigging by anyone is wrong and those who have done it know who they are (in this post or not) and it has gone on far to long and paints those of us who are honest in a bad light. It’s pathetic really to rig a giveaway no matter who it is kwim. Again thanks for sharing your thoughts I respect them 100% 🙂

        • admin Apr 19, 2010, 8:22 pm

          Toni thanks so much for your feedback. I would love to see some nay sayers here. I am not one to discredit their statements by any means. I am equal opportunistic commenter, I am not one to block, edit comments, etc. Again, my point to this post was not necessarily to “out” anyone but more of a way to bring light to a situation that people are ignoring, especially when these bloggers are considered “influencer’s.” I would rather be influenced by someone with some integrity and not by someone who is willing to sell out . Honesty has always been my best policy.

  • Chelle Apr 19, 2010, 1:48 pm

    Excellent post, honey. I’m not sure how people can feel good about themselves when giveaways are rigged. Seriously…I must have a conscience knowing that I am 100% honest in my work. If they’re just going to be giving stuff to whoever wants it…well, that sucks. As a person who enters many a giveaways, it’s a ton of work–lots of time, etc goes into entering them. Not to mention reviewing and writing the posts. Makes you wonder how anything else they say can be honest?

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 2:19 pm

      You know what Chelle, they sleep well at night because no one is holding them accountable. When you lack a conscience, you have no worries on who is holding you accountable for fraud. But eventually we all pay the Piper.

  • Brandi Apr 19, 2010, 8:09 pm

    You know K, it is wrong that someone would “rig” a giveaway for their own benefit. It sucks. I do have one of those nifty little badges on my site, but I consider it my standard. I refuse to “let” someone win just because I know them. I have alot of repeat winners, but that is because I have the same women entering all of my giveaways. For awhile I had a couple of ladies that won like 1 out of 5 giveaways and I started worrying about someone thinking I was rigging it. Now I don’t care. I know I run mine 100% on the up and up. I may be behind actually posting the winners names right now on my winners list, gotta work on that~lol, but hey some days you just get busy and it slips your mind. I left MomDot because of the cliquishness of the whole site. Either you were in or you were out, and I don’t like having to worry about whether I am in or out. I agree with what you said to Chelle “when you lack a conscience, you have no worries on who is holding you accountable”. I must have a freaking huge ass conscience. LOL

    I do have to say this, I use random.org to pick my winners, but it was too much of a hassle to copy the webpage, crop the photo, then add it to a bunch of individual posts. I like my running winners list. It works for me, most days, but sometimes I wonder if I shouldn’t go back to doing a weekly winners post. What do you think?

    • admin Apr 19, 2010, 10:08 pm

      Brandi you know what I am the SAME WAY! I have ALL my winners posted and I am pretty flexible about my winners. I notify them and allow about a week because I HATE to redraw winners. In fact I have a giveaway that three winners never responded and I STILL have to redraw those three winners. Plus I am lacking on pulling a few winners for the few giveaways I just had end and I need to post a few giveaways soon as well. it’s work and for people to cheat others who work hard at this is just BULLSHIT!

      I do a weekly pull, but now that I am working again, the weekly draw can be tough since I reserve my time for my family when I can. My blog is the LAST thing on my list. Love ya woman!

      • Brandi Apr 21, 2010, 2:25 pm

        Well, now thanks to you I got my list caught up. LOL

  • Gina Apr 21, 2010, 4:27 pm

    It didn’t occur to me that the companies sponsoring the giveaways would get involved in the cheating. The one time I won the same prize from two different blogs (I entered both because I really wanted the tickets to a local event), I turned down the second prize so that the blogger could choose a new winner. Why would I need two of anything? I like entering blog giveaways more than corporate contests/sweeps because the odds are so darn good. I’ve won beautiful things from Etsy, a handpainted lazy susan, etc. and never thought there was anything fishy going on. I just assumed everyone was doing it like I was–being careful and honest and using Random.org. My blog is a family affair and my hubby/kids always enjoy picking the winner and seeing how excited people get when they reply back to their winner email.

  • GeorgiaMist Apr 21, 2010, 9:02 pm

    I’ve taken to getting a screen shot of the Random Number Generator w/ the winning number and posting it on the winner announcement along with the winner’s name and actual post — as much verification info as I can.

    I don’t understand bloggers who rig their contests. It puts us all in a bad light.

    I’m glad that someone is talking about this.
    Terri

  • Amanda Apr 24, 2010, 5:01 pm

    I’ve turned down prizes when I won the same giveaway on two different blogs. I agree with Gina. Don’t be greedy.

    • admin Apr 24, 2010, 10:41 pm

      Here’s the thing…why not take both prizes? Really? IF, now big if since bloggers are in question. IF you won fair and square per the rules and entry options then I think why not. However, if the PR decides, nah…we won’t send you two. Well they need to specify in their “full disclosure” otherwise they are setting up the blogger for a fraudulent transaction. Also many people enter giveaways on several different blogs just to increase their odds of winning which is great, much like buying raffle tickets or buying multiple lotter tickets. No sense in calling it greedy, just the way the game is played.

      I can also say, if I have received a review item that I would not use…I have donated it, never sold, or I have given it away as an extra item in a giveaway.

  • roni Jul 22, 2010, 8:17 am

    they’re*, at one point in the post you wrote their instead of they’re (they are) I’m not sure if this was an attack on your ex friend or a warning to bloggers. =\

    • admin Jul 23, 2010, 5:01 am

      Hi Roni, thanks for the comment but I am not sure why a “fashion blogger” would concern herself with this post. Regardless, my grammar…spot on, so I am not sure what you are referring to but I would be more than happy to edit ONE single word in a plethora of words I used to conjure this poetic post about nonsense among mommy and giveaway bloggers.

      Secondly this was no attack, if this WAS an attack I am not the type to come out in a passive aggressive chicken shit way. I will tell you flat out you are a douche bag or a lying piece of garbage, I hold no qualms on failing to sugar coat the truth.

      Furthermore, thanks for the page views and comment. I greatly appreciate the traffic on a post that is MONTHS old. Have a superb day.

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