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  1. #1
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    While back we received complaints that the Colorful Images banner stating $5 Off Any Purchase Over $20 wasn't registering.

    We did a test sale - it didn't register.

    Contacted merchant - no response.

    Contacted linkshare:
    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Can you use your powers to - once again(!) - help us get a response from this merchant.

    Even if we DO get a response it will be too late - as today is the last day of the special - but we will at least be able to salvage two customers from shopping elsewhere. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Linkshare volunteered to contact customers and calm them down.

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>I sent an inquiry to our account manager who handles that account. Meanwhile, if you have any order information for those... customers, please provide to me so that we can try to facilitate a credit for those... customers. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    This week the complaints started again.

    We made another test sale - again no discount.

    Contacted merchant - again no response.

    Contacted their support staff - they said they don't honor Linkshare coupons (!!!!)

    Contacted Linkshare again:

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>We are STILL getting complaints that "OUR" coupons don't work!

    We once again tried ourselves - and got the same results.

    We used the following code verbatim on a blank webpage: [edited out the code]

    There was NO free shipping automatically applied at checkout as stated.

    AS we're online, we called Colorful Images.

    Spoke with a superviser, Sue (wouldn't give last name - always a bad sign!)

    She said CI doesn't have any Linkshare coupons.

    She said they ONLY accept links from BizRate and only accept internal CI coupons!!!!

    So why do we post all these Linkshare links if they don't work. And why post coupons if a superviser at CI says they're no good!!!!!! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Linkshare does their own test sale - finds coupons aren't being honored, and removes the links:

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Hi Bill -

    Sorry for not getting back to you earlier. We wanted to get in touch with our representative at Colorful Images. Meanwhile, I have tested the links myself, and at this time, have pulled all of their promotional banners until we can get it resolved. If you have the contact information for any consumers who tried to redeem the promotion, we will try to get a working link for you to pass to the consumer. I'm also happy to contact the individuals to explain and resolve the situation directly with them. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    THEN, I finally hear back from this merchant:

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Temporary Remove Notification
    We regret to inform you that ColorfulImages.com has removed you from its affiliate program. Merchants may remove affiliates from their programs for many different reasons, including violation of legal terms, inactivity, changes in site content, etc. If you feel that you have been removed in error, or would like further clarification on why you were removed, please contact ciaff at cdir.com. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    aargh!

    PS: Other than this private email from my contact at Linkshare, I didn't rec'v any bulk mailing email regarding the removal of Colorful Images' promo banners. So if you're an affiliate, you might want to check your own site.

  2. #2
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    That is simply outrageous!

    DAMN it Link share - please start kicking these merchants to the curb, do not let them get rid of affiliates because there were found out NOT honoring there advertisements to customers.

    ITS CALLED ADVERTISING FRAUD!

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador Nova's Avatar
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    That's terrible!


    What COC stand for? Crooks Overwriting Commission
    Don't worry tracking is Infected

    Live life to the fullest, You only get 1 chance. Enjoy it while you can... Nothing last forever!

  4. #4
    pph Expert! Gordon's Avatar
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    That is disgusting.

    I will never put a single link up for them that is for sure.
    One day parasites and their ilk will be made illegal, I bet a few Lawyers will be pissed off when the day comes.
    Mr. Spitzer is fetching it nearer

    YouTrek

  5. #5
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SandraR:
    ITS CALLED ADVERTISING FRAUD! <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    It's also called arrogance & stupidity. Does the AM think we don't talk to each other?

    Thanks for the heads-up, Billy Kay, you troublemaker. Colorful Images added to the "don't bother with" list.

    Wayne

  6. #6
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    All this time I thought I was an honest affiliate...

    It seems I've been "trying to break into our eCommerce system" (read their response below), paying for google ads using their competitor's names, yet still sending them the traffic (I've never done CPC in my life) - and/or supplying my visitors with bogus coupon codes (they don't have codes - all their coupons are "activated only by clicking this banner" type ads.

    ----------
    Hi Bill,
    I understand that you've been experiencing some difficulty using the Colorful Images links from LinkShare. We have seen some highly unusual activity coming from your affiliate SID, so your account was temporarily suspended by our IT department. Are you available to discuss this issue? I'm sure that together we can work out the problems and get you back up and running in no time.

    Best,
    [am's name]
    ----------
    peter,

    what the hec is "highly unusual activity"

    maybe is was linkshare checking the links that I've complained about for months (they emailed yesterday and confirmed the discount links don't work)

    how come you haven't answered a single email

    i'm being comped for 3 days at the chalais suite (found out the hard way what a bidet is - the women's toilet that squirts up!!) at paris (las vegas) - i came home this morning to start removing all your links - hopefully i can be back at their pool by noon, as it's supposed to be 111 degrees today

    billy
    ----------
    Hi Bill,
    I've always wanted to stay at the Paris Hotel - I've heard it's terrific (the bidet's notwithstanding).

    The unusual activity that we noticed involved multiple incorrect "promo codes" being entered into our system during individuals session IDs. This is usually a red flag that someone is trying to break into our eCommerce system using faulty or incorrect promotion IDs (we've had problems in the past with this, so we have safeguards in place now). We also noticed a number of suspicious affiliate links appearing on Google, using names of our competitors to point to our website through LinkShare. We're still investigating exactly which affiliate is behind this activity.

    Bill, I haven't received ANY of your previous emails, and was frankly wondering why you hadn't contacted me directly when problems arose. I figured maybe you had lost my contact information...

    Peter
    ------------
    pete,

    not being rude - being short - as i really want to get back to the hotel (and they'res some business that i can't do on the laptop)

    we don't bid on google - can't be us

    no one can enter a bogus coupon code - you switched from entering a code to an automatically applied coupon link several months ago (no code to enter)

    i'll send you copies of the missing emails that i sent to you and then linkshare - but they get "meaner" the more we didn't get a response

    Billy
    ----------
    Hi Bill,
    OK, let's continue next week...

    But our system still does support coupon codes. The field is on the Shopping
    Cart page. You're right - we started using embedded links to provide better
    security- but the option to manually enter promo codes still exists.

    Peter
    ----------
    My question is: The is no logical reason why someone would use MY linkshare ID, pay for google ads using the name of whoever is Colorful Images competitor, because that affiliate wouldn't get a commission right?

    Anyone ever hear of this before?

    AND... if they don't know who's doing it, why the hec would they remove ME!!!

  7. #7
    Web Ho - Design B!tch ~Michelle's Avatar
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    The current promo that I have for them is $5 off all orders over $29.

    I went through that link on my site, added over $30.00 worth of product to my cart, clicked on apply promotion, went to checkout and the $5.00 discount did get deducted from the total as you can see in the screen shot below.



    I wonder if the reason your link code appeared not to work is because it needed to be over $29, not $20??
    ~Michelle
    "All I ask is a chance to prove that money can't make me happy."
    "Work to become, not to acquire." -- Confucius

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    I have never had a problem with their promotion links not working.

    I have had several sales and no complaints about the discounts not working.

    One thing I have found from calling different mechant customer service departments..they know nothing about the affiliate programs, who Linkshare, CJ etc are..So it is reasonable that they would say they don't honor Linkshare coupons, having no idea who Linkshare is...

  9. #9
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    I'd be interested to know how this works out. If it's a Bait & Switch scheme, I'll stay far away from this merchant.

  10. #10
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    Sounds like they want to cast questions on your credibility and get you on the defensive, rather than admit that there was any problem on their end. If they can shyst LS into firing you for some trumped-up "fraud," all the better in their thinking. It's a crook's tactic that used to be more prevalent on the Net (usually used to "justify" reversals on people who are actually innocent) than it seems lately.

    And the comment about not getting the emails sounds like 100% bull...

    I'd avoid doing any more business with this place, to say the least.

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Linkshare does their own test sale - finds coupons aren't being honored, and removes the links:
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    That's confirmation enough for me, that the problem isn't on your end. When LS network says it sucks, there's got to be an industrial-strength vacuum running!
    There is no knowledge that is not power. ~Hemingway

  11. #11
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    I'll X-out his email address here (but it's the one given in their linkshare interface). So I DID get delivery receipt confirmation.

    To: xxx-my email address
    From: Mail Administrator &lt;Postmaster@cox.net&gt;
    Reply-To: &lt;Postmaster@cox.net&gt;
    Subject: Mail System Delivery Report
    Date: Wed, 4 Aug 2004 11:53:01 -0400

    Original-Envelope-Id: NS40112696JT
    Reporting-MTA: dns; fed1rmmtao10.cox.net
    Arrival-Date: Wed, 4 Aug 2004 11:52:59 -0400
    Received-From-MTA: dns; mailordershoppe.com (68.224.137.106)

    Original-Recipient: rfc822;xxx-his email address
    Final-Recipient: RFC822; &lt;xxx-his email address&gt;
    Action: relayed
    Status: 2.1.5
    Remote-MTA: dns; mail.conceptsdirectinc.com (12.17.213.200)
    Diagnostic-Code: smtp; 250 Requested mail action okay, completed


    ---------
    This tells me he got the email.

    His response was:

    From: &lt;xx-his personal email address&gt;
    To: &lt;xx-my email address&gt;
    Subject: RE: [Fwd: Mail System Delivery Report]
    Date: Tue, 10 Aug 2004 11:38:47 -0600

    Bill,
    This wasn't received on our end. We don't use COX.NET...

    Peter
    -----------------
    Duh! HE doesn't use cox cable - I do!!!
    -----------------

    Anyway, I removed and/or substituted his links.

    The links caused complaints from my customers.

    Plus he didn't respond.

    Plus he's accusing me of something bad.

    Plus, he temp removed us without contacting us first.

    All good reasons to dump him.

  12. #12
    Web Ho - Design B!tch ~Michelle's Avatar
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    If the Colorful Images LinkShare links don't work, then why do mine?

    I have people who order all the time and no complaints.

    The one time I had a question for them, they answered my email within less than an hour.

    Sorry to see you had trouble with them.
    ~Michelle
    "All I ask is a chance to prove that money can't make me happy."
    "Work to become, not to acquire." -- Confucius

  13. #13
    Mama in Charge Anne's Avatar
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    My links work but there were several weeks where the "current" coupon did not work. Everything is ok now.

  14. #14
    The slot machine that IS paid! Billy Kay's Avatar
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    Great! I've been exonerated!

    After how many weeks(?) I get a response today:

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Hi Bill,
    Good to hear from you! Our system threw a red flag when our logs showed a
    number of attempts to order using bad credit cards. It looked like it was
    coming from about a dozen LinkShare affiliates, including your SID. But when
    we re-ran the logs we were able to hone it down to one single affiliate
    which has since been removed from LinkShare. I just went into the LinkShare
    system and reinstated your access to the Colorful Images program...

    Thanks for bearing with us while we looked into this activity. We're really
    trying to get hold of some of the fraudulent activity we're seeing on our
    website...

    Peter



    -----Original Message-----

    Hi Pete,

    Can you give us an update on what CI is accusing us of?

    Billy <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    But I already removed ALL their links!

    Aargh! He sounds like a nice guy, and the products converted.

    But... it would take MONTHS to re-add all the links and don't usually want to do business with someone who send the "You've beed removed" emails without contacting us beforehand.


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