Blog give-aways, freebies, and contests. A lot of people run these things everyday, and it’s in every corner of the internet that strives for site promotion and traffic. Everyone loves freebies and no one’s complaining (or so I thought). Unfortunately, DTI (Department of Trade and Industry Sales Promotion) had a few things to say. A DTI permit for my contest.
Are you serious?
The Internet and Mobile Marketing Association of the Philippines (IMMAP) board member Michael Palacios recently met with the DTI and they have implied that such permit is necessary. (Source: http://www.socialmediacontestphilippines.com/2011/07/do-businesses-bloggers-individuals-need.html)
Several points of this meeting are quite alerting too:
1.) DTI does not allow “likes” as a determinant of a winner, because it can be influenced by artificial likes.
2.) Hypothetical Example: A Brand does a “Tell Us Your Amazing Story Using Our Brand” testimonial campaign. Each testimonial is a raffle entry for an iPhone. At no point does it say “Buy Our Brand”. DTI recommendation is to get covered by a DTI Permit.
3.)The Consumer Act of the Philippines covers any raffling or contest activity, whether or not there is a sales requirement component.
4.) DTI only has 4 people looking at online promotions.
5.) Only 5 group buying/daily deals websites currently secure DTI permits.
I haven’t gone so much as to do freebies and Blog Promotions (except for Blog Plug), but I feel that this issue will be such a surprise to my fellow bloggers.
What about information? All these articles that are practically freebies to the readers. Each blog entry is as good as a promotion for the blog itself. Maybe I’m exaggerating a little here, but a permit to do promos and contests on my own blog is already exaggerated as it is.
They should scrutinize this policy a lot more. I applaud the government’s concern for everyone’s welfare and security but I think there should just be a standard that has to be set for one to require a DTI permit. As far as I know, they require this permit even for those without a purchase-requirement on the user/contestant end.
I think rules (such as these) just have to be set for anyone organizing contests or give-aways. The sound of acquiring a DTI permit sounds like so much hassle in many levels!