Jack Yan
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The Persuader

My personal blog, started in 2006.



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08.11.2010

It pays to read the terms and conditions

Hopefully we can get an answer on this from Doubleclick. I fed the following in to its publisher form tonight:

Hello there: we currently deal with Gorilla Nation Media, an ad network that calls Doubleclick code … While we can control the ads that we get via GNM—as we can equally do with Burst Media—we can’t do anything about the ads that you show. I presume that Doubleclick shows ads that fit the user’s criteria when there’s nothing from GNM. Problem: you have some advertisers that conflict with our in-house sales. We really need to find a way to access the ads you show. Can you please advise?

   I’m sure we’re not alone. If anyone has any answers, please let me know in the comments.
   Meanwhile, I’ve had to take Lucire off Blogburst. Mark di Somma and I remember there was some pretty bad service there not too long ago, which already soured me to the company, even if we liked the offering. More recently, another mob, Demand Media, has taken over. I had some queries over two sets of terms and conditions that seem somewhat contradictory, as well as a form on the new company’s site which, on one point, contradicted both sets.
   Both sets are publicly accessible via Google (here and here).
   On October 13, I asked, alongside a question about moral rights:

In the first agreement:

You represent and warrant that:
you are at 18 years of age or older, are a legal resident or citizen of the United States, and that you have the right and obtained all authorizations and consents necessary to execute and enter into this Agreement and perform your obligations;

which I thought was a bit strange given that we had the option of choosing whether we are American, Canadian, British, or ‘None of the above’ [on your form]. (I chose the last one.) The second agreement then states:

You represent and warrant that:
you are at 18 years of age or older, are either: (i) a legal resident or citizen of the United States, United Kingdom, or Canada; and (ii) that you have the right and obtained all authorizations and consents necessary to execute and enter into this Agreement and perform your obligations;

   I went on to discuss the technicalities surrounding the term ‘citizen of the United Kingdom’ and the case of British overseas nationals (the hairy apartheid issue—I still await a second reply from the British High Commission on this, which had been promised me by the former High Commissioner, George Fergusson. Incidentally, former Indian PM Atal Behari Vajpayee agrees that the HM Government’s behaviour is apartheid).
   I haven’t seen a response from Demand, so I can only presume by now that Blogburst no longer wants us.
   You should, after all, always read the terms and conditions. Science Media Centre’s Aimée Whitcroft referred the case of GameStation to me, where 88 per cent of people failed to read its terms and conditions, yet clicked the box to assert that they had. Those 88 per cent effectively agreed to give their soul to GameStation.
   The clause read:

By placing an order via this Web site on the first day of the fourth month of the year 2010 Anno Domini, you agree to grant Us a non transferable option to claim, for now and for ever more, your immortal soul. Should We wish to exercise this option, you agree to surrender your immortal soul, and any claim you may have on it, within 5 (five) working days of receiving written notification from gamestation.co.uk or one of its duly authorised minions.

   The 12 per cent who opted out got a £5 voucher for their trouble. It literally paid to read the terms and conditions.

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Filed under: business, Hong Kong, humour, internet, UK, USA—Jack Yan @ 10.42

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