Posts Tagged: Contests

Do I Need the Horse’s Permission to Take its Picture for a Contest?

The Guardian reported on February 2 that the owner of a horse who was in a winning contestant’s selfie claims that she should share in the contest prize because the winner did not get her permission to take her horse’s picture. Unknown if the horse gave permission, I can’t tell if he’s happy or upset in the winning photo. http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/feb/02/owner-photobomb-horse-demands-share-2000-selfie-prize “Horsefeathers” said the sponsor of the contest who awarded the prize only to the photographer.

We all know that a horse is a horse of course, of course and that a horse can’t grant permission to use its likeness in a contest. But must its owner? Sorry, Charlie, publicity rights have not been granted to animals. Although owners have tried. In New York a dog owner unsuccessfully sued a biscuit company that used Fido’s photo in an ad without the owner’s permission. In Missouri, a jury originally awarded a horse owner $5,000 for an alleged unauthorized use of the horse’s image in an ad. But the appellate court said “Whoa” and reversed.

But what if the horse took the photo? You may have seen that back in November PETA filed a lawsuit in Federal Court in California declaring Naruto the macaque the copyright owner of selfies he took from a person’s camera. http://www.peta.org/blog/monkey-selfie-case-animal-rights-focus/ As reported, the judge in the case wants to throw a monkey wrench into it and dismiss the claim.

The lesson: when having any type of contest or sweepstakes where entrants submit a photo make sure that you get rights to the photo from the photographer and all persons depicted in the photo (tiny paws have incredible difficulty holding a pen). You should include a grant of such rights in the rules and you should also require the winner to sign an assignment of rights during the validation process. Don’t monkey around with this.

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I Said Your Product was Great, Now Gimme a Prize: The FTC Enforces Its Endorsement Guidelines

Yesterday, the FTC settled a deceptive advertising lawsuit against the creators and marketers of the Lumosity “brain training” program. For those of you not smart enough to know, the “brain training” program claimed to not only boost your performance at work or school, but also slow down those pesky cognitive impairments we all seem to experience as we get older.

What was I saying? Oh, yeah. As part of its marketing campaign, Lumosity ran an “Athlete Testimonial Contest” inviting entrants to share their story of how “Lumosity has helped them take their athletic abilities to the next level for the chance to win a Lifetime Subscription, the new iPad, and more!” (NB: Apple frowns upon giving away iPads.)

With this call to action, burgeoning athletes took time away from their snatch and jerks to post their stories online to gain entry into the (sic) “contest”. (more…)

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I’m About to Deliver on 1/1/16 – Where Can I Get the Best Prizes?

On December 22, in my blog on the Miss Universe debacle, I related the story of the mother of baby Yuki Lin who was awarded $25,000 for giving birth at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Day 2007 after temper tantrums arose over the fairness of the contest. I got to wondering, have these types of contests gone the way of the cloth diaper and candy cigarettes? Thankfully, no.

Here are just a few examples of what can you win if first sound you hear after the ball drops is a magical, shrill “I’m here” from your bouncing baby. (more…)

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And the Winner Is…

It’s now viral. Even if you had no interest in watching women get judged based upon how they look in swimwear (athletically speaking, of course), you know that on Sunday Steve Harvey announced Miss Colombia (the country, not Columbia the university, Steve) the winner of the Miss Universe Pageant and then minutes later, apologized and named Miss Philippines the winner. Was this the right thing to do? Donald Trump doesn’t think so; he wants both contestants to be named Miss Universe.

Let’s not forget that underneath it all the Miss Universe Pageant is a contest – with judges, judging criteria and rules. Like all contests, the rules control as a legal matter, but as a practical matter keeping positive public opinion is important. (more…)

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10 Things You May Not Have Known About Promotion Marketing

1. Practically every type of promotional activity is regulated in some way:
a. Sweepstakes and contests
b. User generated content on websites and social media;
c. Coupons, gift cards and money-back guarantees;
d. Charitable solicitations;
e. Celebrity endorsements or other testimonials;
f. Marketing to children; and
g. Even trying to give something away for “free”

2. You need official rules for every sweepstakes and contest you conduct. They form a binding contract with the entrants that will help protect you in the event of a dispute.

EXAMPLE: When Kraft mistakenly produced too many winning game pieces for its “Ready to Roll” sweepstakes, they were protected by having a clause in the rules stating they were not liable for printing or production errors. (more…)

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What You Need to Know About Sweepstakes and Contests

Sweepstakes

A sweepstakes is a chance promotion where the winners are selected randomly, such as random drawings, giveaways, and instant win games.

There must be no purchase necessary to enter a sweepstakes. Entries with a purchase are permitted, but there must also be a free alternative method of entry for everyone, which provides for equal limitations, equal quantity, equal time and equal prizes. Free entry methods include online and mail-in. But watch out for any hidden costs. For example, text messaging is not a “free” method of entry, because of the possible message and data rates that may apply.

For promotions with prizes over $5000 there are registration and bonding requirements in New York and Florida. (more…)

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