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Your Current Promotion (7 Days Free Downloads) Smacks of being a SCAM!

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James M. MurphyYour Current Promotion (7 Days Free Downloads) Smacks of being a SCAM!
by on Jan 25, 2012 at 11:06:50 am

Your Current Promotion (7 Days Free Downloads) Smacks of being a SCAM!
They are asking for Credit Card Information.
This is always a BIG Red Flag!
I'm not biting and I'm upset that a Group like Creative Cow would be supporting this type of Advertising!
James M Murphy

Sell the Talent you have to communicate effectively through graphics. Use the best tool suited to accomplish the Job.


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Ronald LindeboomRe: Your Current Promotion (7 Days Free Downloads) Smacks of being a SCAM!
by on Jan 25, 2012 at 4:03:59 pm

[James M. Murphy] "They are asking for Credit Card Information."

Columbia House record and dvd club has been doing this for decades. So has Spotify, Pandora, eMusic and a thousand other things that I could name if I wished to go on...

You can sign up or not. Just like Spotify, Pandora or a thousand other things that work JUST LIKE THIS.

It's no scam. It's a long-standing method of marketing called a "subscription model" that is based on you being a member, which gets you the discounts. (Magazines use the same kind of model when they deeply discount advertising for annual contracts, while selling individual runs at full pop.) This kind of selling offers deep discounts because the companies have a base they can count on, so they pass the savings onto their large base audience -- who stay because they are getting value for the money.

If you don't want to, don't. I haven't signed up for Spotify premium because I don't want to. But for years I was a member of eMusic and Lala, not to mention gotomeeting.com and others that I use.


[James M. Murphy] "I'm not biting and I'm upset that a group like Creative Cow would be supporting this type of Advertising!"

You are upset at us for supporting a venture like that? When the Federal Trade Commission comes out and says that companies like gotomeeting.com, Columbia House, eMusic, Spotify, Pandora and many thousands of others have to shut down, we'll stop supporting this. Fair enough?

Or did you really think that the 10 FREE CDs or 5 free DVDs at Columbia House -- or the one free month of Spotify Premium or gotomeeting.com (for which you do have to give your credit card information) -- were really free and without a hook? To be direct, the free stuff is the worm, the credit card is the hook.

I agree it is not a marketing pitch we would use, but it hails as part of a long history of "subscription model" marketing. To be quite honest about it: less than a few percent take issue with it, most like it. We know because we were going to pull the plug on this until we talked to many of our members who told us they liked the deal. So we gave up the idea of pulling the plug on this. We figure some love it, some hate it.

You are welcome to your opinion and you can choose to participate or not. Just as I did for many years at eMusic.com. Loved it, even if they did make me give them a credit card when I signed up for my 90 free downloads. Boogers!

Best regards,

Ronald Lindeboom
CEO, Creative COW LLC
Publisher, Creative COW Magazine
A 2011 FOLIO: 40 honoree as one of the 40 most influential publishers in America
http://www.creativecow.net


Creativity is a process wherein the student and the teacher are located in the same individual.

"Incompetence has never prevented me from plunging in with enthusiasm."
- Woody Allen


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Ken VaughnRe: Your Current Promotion (7 Days Free Downloads) Smacks of being a SCAM!
by on Jan 25, 2012 at 7:25:23 pm

While I do not agree that this offer is a scam I do understand the negative reactions to it. No where in the promotional emails I received is it stated that a credit card must be provided nor is it stated that the "trial membership" will change to a paid membership after 7 days if not cancelled.

In fact none of this becomes apparent until after a name and email address is provided (captured) and an account is created.

Apparently the outcry about being required to provide a credit card was such that PayPal was added as an acceptable payment method after the fact. To some this probably made no difference.

Even with some of the examples mentioned specifically Columbia House the full terms are stated in the fine print before action is taken and personal information provided. I can't say about the others as I have no experience with them.

So in my opinion this "offer" is not a scam and arguably it is not unethical. It's just clumsy and ham-handed, things for which Creative Cow should not be held responsible.

Ken


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Ronald LindeboomRe: Your Current Promotion (7 Days Free Downloads) Smacks of being a SCAM!
by on Jan 25, 2012 at 7:33:13 pm

[Ken Vaughn] "While I do not agree that this offer is a scam I do understand the negative reactions to it. No where in the promotional emails I received is it stated that a credit card must be provided nor is it stated that the "trial membership" will change to a paid membership after 7 days if not cancelled."

Ken,

It is CLEARLY STATED at their website that you will be charged. Unfortunately, many people sign and do things without reading what they are signing. We have gotten so used to clicking "I Agree" every time that a new software update pops up with its license amendment and insists we agree -- that many of us just click and go.

I know it is stated there because I have personally checked it out.

I do not like the fact that they do not put the credit card information first but neither does just about any of the companies that market through subscription model marketing. You fill out the account information and THEN they ask you for your credit card.

I agree with you that this is a really awkward and clumsy way to present oneself and we wouldn't use it. Personally, I have always felt that this approach elicits umbrage that is unnecessary and would be avoidable if they simply made it more up front.

Best regards,

Ronald Lindeboom
CEO, Creative COW LLC
Publisher, Creative COW Magazine
A 2011 FOLIO: 40 honoree as one of the 40 most influential publishers in America
http://www.creativecow.net


Creativity is a process wherein the student and the teacher are located in the same individual.

"Incompetence has never prevented me from plunging in with enthusiasm."
- Woody Allen


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Ken VaughnRe: Your Current Promotion (7 Days Free Downloads) Smacks of being a SCAM!
by on Jan 25, 2012 at 8:12:29 pm

I stand corrected. The trial is addressed about halfway through the fine print in the "terms and conditions". I have come to expect such agreement to terms to address such things as reselling, malicious use, liability etc so it didn't occur to me the terms of the trial offer would be buried in such a place. Usually these are general terms that apply to everything, all the time not limited time offers. My incorrect expectation was that this info would be shown in fine print but in a more conspicuous location.

I actually went through the process and when confronted with having to enter CC info I closed the window. I subsequently got an email stating "I'm with VideoBlocks.com, and I noticed that you started signing up for your 7 days of complimentary downloads, but didn't complete the process."

I assumed this was a frequent occurrence as three days later I got another mail stating that PayPal had been added as a payment method.

Again, I don't think there was a concerted effort to be deceptive and most likely reactions like mine and obviously the reactions of others were not anticipated.

Ken


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Padraic CulhamRe: Your Current Promotion (7 Days Free Downloads) Smacks of being a SCAM!
by on Feb 29, 2012 at 8:10:12 pm

Not a scam, but definitely some flaws in their process.

I took advantage of this complimentary trial offer last year. Downloaded the free stock footage clips. Canceled my account. My card wasn't charged. Everything was good.

Fast forward to now, when I'm looking into actually signing up and becoming a paid subscriber, but I can't do so with my email address, as it's already "used" in the system. In order to become a paid subscriber, I have to use a different email address.

I understand that they want to track and prevent people from signing up for the free promotions over and over again. But if a person is willing to become a PAID subscriber, perhaps they could take the flag off of that existing email address and let somebody give them money?

Mac Pro 2x2.8 QuadCore; 6GB RAM; FCStudio2; Adobe Creative Suite 4 Production Premium


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