OnlineCasinoReviewer's legal challenge against Affiliate Edge

Discussion in 'Casino Industry Buzz and Terms Alerts' started by ThePOGG, Feb 20, 2018.

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    ThePOGG

    ThePOGG Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Hi All,

    For those who were not aware Dave Sawyer, owner of OnlineCasinoReviewer.com recently challenged the retroactive application of a Minimum Activity Quota by Affiliate Edge in the UK courts. This was a bold action that I was personally very impressed by. The justification for the application of this term was a fairly standard 'we can change anything at any time and there's nothing you can do about it other than close your account and forfeit your historic earns' clause. I personally have always been sceptical about whether these types of terms would stand up to legal challenge due to the imbalance in power they create. Practically there is no such thing as a contract for the affiliate while that type of term is in place.

    Unfortunately at the end of last year Dave's efforts came to an unsuccessful conclusion. The court effectively declined to hear the case based on an arbitration clause contained within the contract requiring arbitration before litigation. The unfortunate consequence of this is that Bath Rock Media Limited has been forced to pay a significant proportion of Affiliate Edge's legal fees (~£12k out of over £20k they wanted to defend them from paying a balance of ~£5k).

    I know that there will be affiliates here that have been impacted by the rogue activities we've seen this program engage in over the last year and I hope many of you will be as morally offended by this outcome as I am. Dave fought for the right reasons and lost for the wrong ones.

    When I heard about this the decision was made to make a contribution to help Dave meet these legal fees. Turns out that I wasn't the only one to think this way. Casinomeister stepped up to the plate with a donation that made ours seem paltry. And both http://casinobonusesnow.com/ and http://fastpayingcasinos.com/ came through with their own contributions. Between all of theses sites and Dave's own payments all but £5.9k of the balance has been covered.

    It is my hope that other affiliates will take a similarly community minded approach and that the rest of this balance can be covered by us all pulling together. For those who would struggle to justify making a contribution simply to help right a wrong - financially times aren't easy and money has to be spent wisely - ThePOGG.com, Casinomeister, and OnlineCasinoReview will all be offering a fully credited link within their articles on this topic to any affiliate who contributes £500 or more. (Articles are linked in the site names in the previous sentence).

    Truly this is an opportunity for affiliates to come together and make a clear statement about programs that choose to apply these types of terms by supporting an affiliate that tried to stand up and get a court ruling that could have benefited all of us.

    TP
     
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    PROFRBcom

    PROFRBcom Rakeback affiliate and professional poker player.

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    I PM'd you on GPWA. But I will reiterate my public comment here.

    I have been screwed before by affiliate programs going rogue. No one, including me, did anything about it (legally speaking anyway, though I highly advise doing some negative PR work against said firms). I applaud OCR for standing up for themselves, and the affiliates.

    I intend to write about this on my website, give OCR's courageous story a link, and contribute to his legal fund. I hope that other affiliates do the same. If we stand together, we can keep these shady companies from pushing us around.
     
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    AidanLCFC

    AidanLCFC Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    sounds shit and selfish from me but at the present time cashflow is an issue, don't mean I dont have no dough just got it tied up but once that's sorted I'll contribute. hopefully it'll be sorted (edit - i mean the legal costs) before i get back from my travels but then i'll still chip in to maybe a 'group pot' to take on any further rogues? something GPWA should of done from the start BTW, but heyho, i'll help once i can
     
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    ThePOGG

    ThePOGG Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Doesn't sound shit at all. Money's not easy to come by. I would have contributed more if I could have afforded to but like yourself we have commitments we have to meet.

    We've already had 4 people offer to contribute so I'm confident that this will be covered in the very near future. However I do think there's something to be considered in the idea of a joint funding pool to collectively take on programs that try this type of action via the courts. It'd need thought and planning, but I'd certainly be open to contributing further to this.

    TP
     
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    Biti

    Biti Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    An offtopic comment from my part, as it's not about Affiliate Edge. It was a legit program, but things have changed dramatically.

    But in general. It sounds nice, but I think it's better to avoid rogues as much as possible at forehand. Nobody specific, but just in general when I am checking websites of colleagues... if you see the brands some people are working with, you know it will lead to problems sooner or later.
     
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    AidanLCFC

    AidanLCFC Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    my pot comment was a flippant remark but in all seriousness, could be a winner. happy for thepogg or any of the LCB guys to set this up or look after it or whatever, same if baldidiot is involved. just putting a few thoughts out there tbh
     
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    CL-Ed

    CL-Ed Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Disgusting. I hope this wasn't the result of bad advice from a lawyer that missed the arbitration clause.

    I'm willing to chip in some. Send me a PM and let me know the details.
     
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    dfiocch

    dfiocch Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Damn. PM me too, chip in too.
     
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    Webzcas

    Webzcas Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    I have posted this on the GPWA as well -
    I'd just like to say a big thank you to ThePogg, Casinomeister and CasinoBonusesNow. But seriously ThePogg you have been a rock.

    Unfortunately I cannot say anymore than what has been posted here or what I have written on my own site which TP linked above. But a big thank you to all of the community and my peers, especially to those that have chipped in to help.

    This is the thing. I thought that being a Small Claims I was protected when it came to costs. At no stage was an Arbitration Clause mentioned. So alas I did not lawyer up. It was only when they defended my claim did the Arbitration Clause get mentioned and subsequently I got hit with the costs. As any contract with an arbitration clause does not get tracked through the small claims process. Hence the costs awarded against me.

    I have though instructed a solicitor to ensure the information, concerning the Stay Hearing on the 19th Dec 2017, that I have put out in the public domain on my site is fine to do so. Hence the length of time it has taken before anything has been published.
     
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    Frank

    Frank Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Can count me in, can you take bitcoin? pm me an address... ultimately the bigger cost lies with these AE, they wont survive much longer, from one of the best to the very worst.
     
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    ThePOGG

    ThePOGG Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    I'm just contacting everyone to gather invoice details which I'll then pass to Dave as a single file.

    I genuinely cannot believe the response we've had to this! Already we've already gathered £4.6k and we're not even at 24 hours!! Many people like to represent affiliates as selfish and self-serving. That may be true for some within the industry, but imo this sort of showing demonstrates that there are many good people working as affiliates.

    I want to give a deep and genuine 'thank you' to everyone who's contacted so far.

    Taking this in mind I have some thoughts about an 'affiliate union' type of arrangement. I'm not going to derail this topic with that conversation so I will start a new thread and edit this post with a link to it. Got it to work there would have to be a lot of conversation.....

    TP
     
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  12.  
    ThePOGG

    ThePOGG Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    I'm REALLY happy to say that with GPWA just offering a contribution I think we've hit our target. Assuming that everyone honors the amounts that they've communicated then GPWA's contributions should put us over the line.

    As such I'm going to ask that no-one else makes an offer for the time being. I very much appreciate everyone's generosity but it would be unethical to take a penny more than was needed under the pretences. In a few days time once we can confirm whether the full amount has been met I'll make another post either confirming victory or detailing any remaining balance.

    Thank you to everyone and I'm hoping to make a post about some type of affiliate union for you all to think about later today.

    TP
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2018
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  13.  
    AidanLCFC

    AidanLCFC Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Just want to put it out there, seeing as i got the idea going. I'm having nothing to do with a union of sorts if GPWA are involved, donation yes, running it/input/direction - no
     
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    ThePOGG

    ThePOGG Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Hi AdanLCFC,

    I'd encourage you to review the framework I'm suggesting before drawing conclusion. What I've got in mind would not be specifically directed by any one member. It's your choice though and I'd respect any decision you made.

    TP
     
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    AidanLCFC

    AidanLCFC Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    they've had plenty of chances to prove they are out on the side of affiliates and failed many times. if they have a seat at some roundtable i'll be steering well clear mate, and I bet many others will as well. obviously will look at a proposal, by the way just for clarity, i want absolutely nothing to do with a union apart from chipping in with some money to help people out that have been screwed, even though Im out the industry
     
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    ThePOGG

    ThePOGG Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    I'm not posting the framework just yet - I'm taking feedback from a number of parties in case I'm overlooking something obvious. I really don't think you'd have much to worry about on this front. If you'd like a look in advance PM me your email and I'll send it over ;)

    TP
     
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    Webzcas

    Webzcas Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    I just want to thank everyone. I am truly grateful.
     
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    Biti

    Biti Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Almost can't wait to see the framework. :)

    The challenge with this kind of things is usually to keep dollar sign-eyed lawyers or people with double, triple agendas or just their own agenda outside or at least not at the wheel.

    It's good ThePOGG takes the first step.
     
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    Biti

    Biti Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Ontopic: reading this case, I assume the only reason OCR lost, is that arbitration was not tried. It would be interesting if another affiliate, would try to reach an agreement with them about arbitration. And if not possible, that a new case is started.
     
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    Webzcas

    Webzcas Affiliate Guard Dog Member

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    Correct. Arbitration I have been advised could cost anything up to and upwards of £50k if the arbitrator ruled against the claim. For £5,000 that does not make commercial sense.

    My claim was STAYED and has not been proven one way or the other.
     
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