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Apple Nixes iPad Giveaways 388

Posted by samzenpus
from the too-good-for-free dept.
KingSkippus writes "According to a story at CNN, Apple has begun enforcing third party promotion guidelines (PDF) that, among other things, restricts organizations from giving away iPads, using the word 'free' to describe any Apple products in a prominent manner, or promoting giveaways of iPod Touches in lots of less than 250 and with Apple's explicit approval."
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Apple Nixes iPad Giveaways

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  • They did what now? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @07:38PM (#36314248)

    You can't prevent someone from giving your product away. If they bought one, you can't keep them from giving that product to someone else.

    captcha: astound

    As in, I am astounded that they think this can possibly work.

  • Enforceability? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Ruke (857276) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @07:39PM (#36314266)

    Is there any legal weight behind this, or is this just gesturing on Apple's part? It certainly seems like Apple shouldn't have any control over what I do with my iPad once I've bought it; no matter if I give it away for free, stick it in a blender, or install my own bootloader. It's certainly their prerogative if they want to say that any of those things void my warranty, but I don't think they can enforce any of their demands on me.

  • Legal basis (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Nethemas the Great (909900) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @07:44PM (#36314318)
    I wonder what legal basis they're using to "enforce" their policy towards giveaways. With software you can bind people with EULAs as part of the opening packaging/installing of software, but I wasn't aware that Apple was forcing people to sign contracts before purchasing their hardware. The best they could get away with would be trademark enforcement for promotional material but there's nothing I'm aware of that could restrict transfer of ownership of purchased goods absent a contract.
  • Easy workaround. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @07:46PM (#36314332)

    A middleman party buys the iPads. This person then sells the entire lot for one cent to the giveaway party. The third party is not encumbered by the agreement, and can do whatever the hell they want.

  • Such sheninigans (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Roachie (2180772) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @07:48PM (#36314370)
    encheapin our over priced product. We must put a stop to it!
  • by FrostDust (1009075) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @07:56PM (#36314440)

    You can't prevent someone from giving your product away.

    No, but Apple could chose not to ship you anymore iP[a/o]ds. This is targeted at retailers trying to use the products in a promotion to get customers, not at a normal user who wants to give their device away to a friend (although I'm sure that they've already developed DRM to do just that).

    Apple is probably doing this as a proactive maneuver to protect their brand name from being cheapened.

  • Re:lolwut? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by macs4all (973270) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @08:05PM (#36314536)

    I'm not sure what they are going for here. If there is a give-away do they think it will water down the brand?

    Not "water down"; but "devalue".

    Personally, I was trying to figure this seemingly wrongheaded policy out myself. And I think I might have figured it out.

    It's called "Perceived Value". Successful marketing in a "technology-driven" company is a curious combination of understanding current (and future) "technology", plus MBA skills, Communication skills, with a dash of Psychology. And the "Psychology" part of that equation tells the Marketeer that when people get things for free, they don't "value" them (or not as much). This, curiously enough, extends even to the people who don't actually receive the item; but even just could have received it.

    Think about it: "Everybody" knows that, when when anybody, especially a business (who is, afterall, "in it for the money"), gives something away, that it is very rarely something they could have easily "made money on" (even if they don't actually sell that item themselves).

    We are all somewhat "conditioned" to the fact that, only "worthless" items are given away as "Promotion". Often it is basically true. Sometimes not (like, for example, a car); but, in all cases, the "Perceived Value" effect remains in the back of everyone's mind. And Apple is smart enough to pay attention to those nuances of human behavior. it doesn't make them evil, or "dickish"; just perceptive.

  • by SomePgmr (2021234) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @08:12PM (#36314600) Homepage
    This comment needed to appear in the summary. It would have prevented a lot of wasted armchair lawyer time.
  • Re:Ok? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sniper98G (1078397) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @08:16PM (#36314626)
    You have to understand. Who wants to buy an Apple product only to turn around and see some poor person with one. How are you supposed to feel superior to them if they have one too.
  • by williamhb (758070) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @08:53PM (#36314924) Journal

    No, but Apple could chose not to ship you anymore iP[a/o]ds. This is targeted at retailers trying to use the products in a promotion to get customers, not at a normal user who wants to give their device away to a friend (although I'm sure that they've already developed DRM to do just that).

    A small bank decides to run a "win one of 5 iPads" competition to new customers. How is Apple going to stop them from sending someone down to the local department store to buy them? (Or five staff to different stores if they want to be sneaky!) Heck, is Apple going to start interrogating every shopper in an Apple Store? "Admit it! You're going to give this way in some filthy raffle aren't you, Miss Whatever-your-name-is! And I bet that's not even a real beard!"

  • Re:Ok? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @08:54PM (#36314942)
    What makes you think that scammers and spammers care what Apple says about promotions? These groups are already operating on the fringe at best.
  • by raehl (609729) <raehl311@AUDENyahoo.com minus poet> on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @09:10PM (#36315038) Homepage

    Don't you mean:
    iP([ao]d|hone)s

  • Of course, anyone can sue anyone for anything, but Apple would have to prove that the marketing was done in a manner to make it appear that Apple endorsed the contest; simply advertising that you are giving away a product by the name of the product is not sufficient.

  • by pookemon (909195) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @10:23PM (#36315474) Homepage
    I can think of another phrase to use when referring to Apple.

    Sieg Heil!
  • by waives (1257650) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @10:35PM (#36315540)
    Did you see the part where that happened in the UK?
  • by quickgold192 (1014925) on Wednesday June 01, 2011 @11:53PM (#36316026)
    There's no trademark infringement - the bank is giving away a bona fide iPad. Just like this post is talking about *actual* iPads. Calling something an iPad that *isn't* an actual iPad is trademark infringement. Saying you'll give away an iPad is simply an accurate statement.

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