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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    With their Moe Money Maker blatanly taking over affiliate links, I am suprised there isn't more discussion on this as there is on Morpheus etc.

    This program doesn't even try to do it behind the scenes, it takes over the browser and takes the person to ebates.

    I realize people make a choice to download this program, but feel it very unfair the way it works.

    I don't understand the merchants reasoning. If a person goes directly to their site, the little ebates thingy pops up and takes over and they pay for a sale that should have been free. Why pay when they have the sale already?

    Another thing I really can't believe is how many people have affiliate links up to ebates. Why would they promote a company that is going to take their commissions? I see lots of shopping sites promoting ebates!

    They approached me a year or so ago, actually almost got to the point of stalking. Offered me big bucks for every new signup I could bring them.
    Told them in no uncertain terms I would not give away my customers to them.

    I also can't believe the way CJ is embracing them. I can't wait to get to CJU in a few weeks.
    From the agenda:

    Publisher Success Story - Ebates.com
    Paul Nichols, Director Business Development, Ebates.com

    "CJU Alumnus, Paul Nichols returns to share the success story of Ebates.com, a cash-back, incentive-based shopping portal that offers discount shopping to its 3 million members. Learn how Ebates.com leverages its relationships with its members, its advertisers and Commission Junction to focus on growing its program."

    Yeah, we know how they got successful....

    But again, I ask, how come no one seems to be really going after them and their tactics?

    Connie Berg
    www.flamingoworld.com

  2. #2
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    Perhaps (and this is only a guess) because they are such an obvious target that it's more productive initially to go for the slightly greyer-area targets like Morpheus/Buyersport.com...

    Then, once its established definitively that even they lie on the wrong side of the "acceptable business practices" line, it's time to fight some of the easier battles with the parasites that are WAY outside the "acceptable" zone.

    I guess it's like a martial arts tournament where you pick on the toughest guy first and then gradually work your way down to the easy guys to beat...

    --
    Genki Productions http://www.genkiproductions.com/
    Free Email - Affiliate Programs - Web Promotion Tips - Jobs in Japan

  3. #3
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    Egggsactly!

    <font size="2" face="Verdana">Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli
    </font></p>

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    Yeah, but they really p*ss me off! Probably because they are so widely embraced by the affiliate industry, hailed as a huge success story!
    First Paul Nichols speaking at CJU,
    This quote in the upper right corner at Linkhare by Paul Nichols:
    http://www.linkshare.com/affiliates/index.shtml
    Plus they have their own affiliate program thru Befree.
    Seems to me the solution providers are supporting them and even endorsing them.
    Being a shopping site, I think they are one of my biggest thieves.

    Connie Berg
    www.flamingoworld.com

  5. #5
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Connie Berg:

    Being a shopping site, I think they are one of my biggest thieves.

    Connie Berg
    http://www.flamingoworld.com<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Well of course.
    Good news on your side is that TopMoxie does not work when the merchant's site is framed. The minute the surfer chooses to break out of your frame ... TopMoxie takes over.

    Bad news is that there are still plenty of merchants that are not P3P cookie compliant.

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    Just checked the agenda for CJU, seems Mr.Paul Nichols is not on the list for the "Hot Buttons Panel" any longer. Guess he can't think of any ways to defend his company's practices. If you are not doing anything wrong you should allow us to ask you questions and such.

    I see he is speaking, we are allowed to ask the speakers questions, right??!!

    Publisher Success Story - Ebates.com
    Paul Nichols, Director Business Development, Ebates.com

    CJU Alumnus, Paul Nichols returns to share the success story of Ebates.com, a cash-back, incentive-based shopping portal that offers discount shopping to its 3 million members. Learn how Ebates.com leverages its relationships with its members, its advertisers and Commission Junction to focus on growing its program.


    Connie Berg
    www.flamingoworld.com

  7. #7
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    Everyone in the Internet world reports their companies as a success story.

    I actually think these buyer collectives are the worst possible market for merchants. The whole idea of a collective buyers base is that they collect enough power in the market place to force merchants decisions about margins, discounts, etc..

    From a merchant standpoint, it is much better, and more secure to develop thousands of independent affiliates who simply want a little cash, and really aren't that terribly interested in power politics.

    The problem we have is that the big three networks are just that...they are slimeballs who love power politics.

    Missoula - Short Stories

  8. #8
    Full Member styleforfree's Avatar
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    Thanks Connie for bringing this to our attention!

    I've just downloaded eBates and it's not only
    ripping affiliates off of their earnings - it's
    doing the same to stores that belong to eBates
    who are affiliated with others too.

    This should rank high in priority, eBate's
    membership is enormous. Running thru the list
    of merchants belonging to eBates, it's no wonder I'm not seeing sales, but am sending traffic to these stores!!! We're losing major dollars with this.

    I've got no grudge with eBates and it's program. But when it's stealing food from the mouths of my children -- I take serious issue with that.

    Can't wait to see everyone at the Hot Buttons Panel at CJU [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

    With my best,


    Liz @ Styleforfree.com

  9. #9
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    geez connie, you're right!

    several merchants who've pledged against parasites are on the ebates site!

    doesn't this kinda make their pledges meaningless?

    looks like i'll be undoing some links this weekend, unless i hear something a lot more reassuring.

    [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img]

  10. #10
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    Quote:
    _______________________________________________________________
    geez connie, you're right!

    several merchants who've pledged against parasites are on the ebates site!

    doesn't this kinda make their pledges meaningless?
    _________________________________________________________________

    All Members of this board and have pledged against the exact thing they are supporting!!

    Amazon.com
    Amazon Babies
    Amazon Toys
    AKA Gourmet
    BackcountryStore
    Bare Necessities
    Bath and Body
    Coldwater Creek
    eHobbies
    Harry & David
    Hotwire
    JCWhitney
    Priceline.com
    Sea Eagle
    Target at Amazon
    Tiger Direct
    Zappos.com Shoes

    All these members and especially Bryan, Michael, Jamie, Rick and Andy !! Shame on you all

  11. #11
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    The merchants are all discussing this in our private forum right now...this is definitely not going undicussed by the few merchants here. I can only speak for my own company and position with ebates and mypoints. This is actually alot deeper an issue than Morpheus/Buyersport ever was for us.

    Ebates and Mypoints have been affiliates with us since the beginning of our program and way before MyPointsAlert and MMM came along. They have had consistent sales before they added this feature..but nothing more dramatic an increase since they launched them. There is reason for that at least with my site that I will explain below.

    There are several issues with them in my opinion. The issue that effects YOU as affiliates is also MY biggest concern...commission stealing by redirecting. Several of the merchants here have talked to Paul directly at ebates about it and they are supposedly adding this fix to their program to block the redirects from other affiliates and the fix will be up in 1-2 weeks. At that time..if it is NOT fixed or changed, they are gone from my program. AS far as MyPoints, I have a call in to them about this..If they have no plans to change..I am out.
    The other issue with these programs which is redirecting traffic from direct type-ins or from our other ad placements..well..that is really between me and ebates and MP. If we decide to pay them and pay for the ad in order to give rebates or points..that is up to the merchant and is not stealing from you! agree so far?

    There are definitely two ways to look at this story and it is not an easy decision to remove them once they fix this stealing. Paul explained to me..and I buy this because I have seen it on our end..is that customers would buy once from us through them..get their rebates set up..then forget to come through them..come to us directly and still think their rebates would automatically be credited. It was causing an CS nightmare for them to go back and bug merchants to find these transactions..we saw it on our end when customers would contact us wondering why their rebates were not attributed for certain purchases. So that is one issue..the intention is good..to help the customer..but the net was cast too wide and they caught up affiliates in this good intention..and ebates is fixing this..if not..they lose merchants..at least the few on here who are aware of the problem.

    Now with all that being said...so far I have not been able to get the MMM or MPAlert to redirect on my site. I think it may be the way are site works..but I d/l both at various times..and I can directly type in akagourmet.com, I can go to another affiliate and go through a link, I can go to another paid ad spot and click..and NEVER get the popup and redirect. So any sales we do get right now could only be sales for customers going through ebates..probably through email specials or just return customers who know they get ebates.

    I would LOVE for any of you to d/l either popup and try it on our site. I could not do it on 3 computers.Now I am not implying that just because they are not stealing from MY affiliates does not make it still okay..and I told ebates that..any stealing is stealing and is cause for removal if not fixed.

    Lastly..I have to say this..I am new to ABW..only a week or two when I was informed about the Morpheus issue..I then decided to participate here..though I don't think any of you are in my affiliate program(maybe a few)..in hopes of fostering relationships and understanding between merchants and affiliates..Chris, Andy, Jamie, Shawn and the other merchants here who are very vocal and accomodating on this forum are all feeling a bit kicked around..and I don't blame them. You threaten them(us) with removal from our programs at every turn if we do not comply with your wishes...but are you going to our competitors with the same threats? Many of our competitors who are not here are working with you to improve things are not getting the same treatment that the very few of us here are. We are spending more time defending our actions then we are planning for killer holiday seasons.

    AKA Gourmet,and the other merchants here, are obviously committed to running honest affiliate programs and that is why we are here listening to you..but please..cut US some slack. Things cannot change overnight and we are all committed to figuring out the issues with ebates and Mypoints.

    If any of you are able to redirect after d/l these programs, let me know. I just could not make it happen..which I guess is really a good thing!

    Feel free to privately email or call me directly.

    Patty Altaffer
    Affiliate Manager
    AKA Gourmet(www.akagourmet.com)
    patty@akagourmet.com

  12. #12
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    sorry about that. I thought my phone number was in my siggy.

    415-559-1782

    Patty Altaffer
    Affiliate Manager
    AKA Gourmet(www.akagourmet.com)
    patty@akagourmet.com

  13. #13
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    Patty,
    Did you go to their site and download the program? It has to be downloaded, it is not something that just automatically happens.

    Connie

    Connie - www.flamingoworld.com

    All around the mulberry bush the flamingo chased the weasel

  14. #14
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    Hi connie! Yes..I d/l MPAlert, MMM and SchoolCash reminders..you can only have one active at a time..so I have tried all of them..d/l to my computer at home, work and my husband's computer running XP..AKA Gourmet does not get the popup if you try from direct type, another affiliate or another ad..it works fine for me for other merchants..I have that MMM popping up all day as I surf the net..but NOt for my site..

    so the only way..that I can see for right now that users are getting ebates is directly through them..which is what I assumed all along..until I found out about the download.

    If you can try it..let me know if it works for you!

    And again..I reiterate..because it is not seeming to work for MY site and steal traffic from my affiliates does not mean I am okay with it as it is. I am looking into this with all 3 providers..ebates, Mypoints and schoolcash(which I don't think we have had a single order anyway)For me it is moreso about the ability to steal from you..than even the monetizing my other ad efforts and would drop them over that if it was not addressed and fixed.

    Patty Altaffer
    Affiliate Manager
    AKA Gourmet(www.akagourmet.com)
    patty@akagourmet.com

  15. #15
    Full Member styleforfree's Avatar
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    There are a couple of other problems with eBates other than the redirects of affiliate links and commissions.

    If eBates is on a store's website, and you've got eBates on your computer. Try typing,
    catalogcity.com in, for example.

    WATCH carefully what happens.

    Ebates is inserting its' own PID in the link that's typed in by hand, clicked on thru a CatalogCity newsletter or thru a search term on Google.

    No wonder they're such a "success story" they're getting paid everyone else's money [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img]


    Liz
    Styleforfree.com

  16. #16
    ABW Ambassador flamingoworld's Avatar
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    For some reason it does not seem to be auto redirecting for AKAGourmet. It is the only merchant there that is not listed as "coupons only" that I have found this not to happen on.

    Had you complained to them? Maybe they took you off the program.

    Connie - www.flamingoworld.com

    All around the mulberry bush the flamingo chased the weasel

  17. #17
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    Hi connie..no..we are definitely still in Ebates program..and My points..they both use the TopMoxie program..and it does not work for either site or download..Schoolcash is the same. I did mention this to Paul Nichols yesterday in a conversation about all this going on..he was surprised it did not work for our site either. Like I said, it is probably a good thing..at least I know that my affiliates are safe and not losing sales..most are actually doing better than ebates or mypoints at the moment! But..if they do not fix this problem for other merchants..I am out..

    okay..I am off to get more virtual storefronts done..busy times!!

    Thanks for your help, Connie!

    Patty
    AKA Gourmet

    Patty Altaffer
    Affiliate Manager
    AKA Gourmet(www.akagourmet.com)
    patty@akagourmet.com

  18. #18
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> but are you going to our competitors with the same threats? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    No, I'm really not. I have only so much time and I am too busy building pages to sale stuff to do all the things I ought to do and want to do.

    My solution is just to drop the merchant and move on to the next merchant for the most part.

    I do hope to do a few mailings to merchants but that is warring with my desire to put up a few hundred more sales pages this month, take care of my search engine and banner exchange requests for inclusion, get the coloring book bought and paid for, develop a new site, start up my poor newsletter again, transfer everything to TH Media and hold down my two jobs.

    I guess I am just lazy.

    The Wolf Credo: Respect the elders. Teach the young. Cooperate with the pack. Play when you can. Hunt when you must. Rest in between. Share your affections. Voice your feelings. Leave your mark.

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