Before reading my list, I want to add that I am not a lawyer so please don't consider any of this legal advice.
- Tweets too long. Many giveaways provide canned tweets for you to post to get an extra entry. Twitter tweets have an 140 character limit. I can't tell you how many times I've seen canned tweets that were over 140 characters. Once, I saw one that was well over 1,000 characters.
- Requiring a like on a Facebook page. This is against Facebook rules. Sponsors can require a like of a status/message, but not of their page. Nobody at Facebook seems to enforce this rule but you wonder if the giveaway host is going against those rules, do you trust them to pick an actual winner? Requiring the tagging of friends is also taboo.
- Requiring a purchase to enter. This is illegal. Sponsors have to provide a way for people to enter the contest without a purchase. It may not be as convenient to enter w/o a purchase, but it still has to be possible. Typically, this is a mail in option that requires you to provide a SASE to get a code sent back to you to then enter online.
- No clear end date. The giveaway form is setup with an end date but the form only shows that the giveaway ends in so many days or hours. Please put the end date somewhere in the text of the rules.
- No time zones. An end date and time is great but if they forget to include the time zone, when is 11:59 pm? Actually, including the wrong time zone is something I'm seeing, too. 11:59pm EST is not the end of day in New York this time of year. We're in Daylight Savings Time. End of day is 11:59pm EDT if you want east coast end of day.
*Read my Disclosure