400/Rival Charging Affiliates for contributions to Progressive Jackpots

Steve S

Dormant account
Joined
Feb 13, 2010
Location
Dallas, TX
Hello everyone!

My first post. This is a compilation of posts I made over at AGD.

This is an issue that has been building for about three months for me. So, please forgive me if, despite my best efforts, this turns into a rant.

I run a tape every morning of what each affiliate program owes me. I save them.

I noticed how on the very last day of November 2009, the commissions due to me from 400 Affiliates dropped by about $1,300. As I had a large player at Paradise 8, I asked Jax about the reduction of the amount due me in commissions and was told following:

Sorry about the delayed reply.

As you suspected in your email, the player won a jackpot of $xxxx.xx, which resulted in you seeing the $xxxx.xx as her overall losses. The player also cashed out $xxxx on Dec 1, but then reversed that cash out on the same day and lost it all.


On the last day of December 2009 I experienced another drop in the commissions due to me from 400 Affiliates. This time the reduction was a little over $1,100. Again, I questioned the decrease in my monthly commission. I was given an answer similar to that of the previous month.

On the last day of January 2010, the same thing happened again. My commissions due took another hit. This time the damage was only $450. At this point, after three months in a row, my suspicions had been aroused. I told Jax that I did not feel it likely that someone would hit a jackpot on the last day of the month - three months in a row.

After a few days, I was told that the reductions in the amount of commission due to me for the last three months - on the last day of each month - were not due to a player winning a jackpot and cashing out after all. Instead, I was being charged for contributions to the progressive jackpot pool.

What? I had never heard of such a thing. Apparently, 5% (or 10% - it varies by game I am told) of every dollar played by my players on progressive slots is contributed to the progressive slot pool. My share is my affiliate percentage of that 5%, or approx 2%. And this is deducted from my affiliate earnings at the end of the month.

I have a number of problems with this.

First, I was never notified of this. My agreement with 400 Affiliates is 40% of player losses. I checked their affiliate website and could find no mention of this charge to affiliates. Not in the commission agreement, not in the FAQ, not in the legal baloney. From where I stand, they have no right to subtract these amounts from my affiliate earnings and they now owe me almost $3K. If they want this kind of arrangement going forward, they should notify me so that I can decide for myself if this is something I want to be a partner to.

Again, if I was notified of a change to my commission agreement and I missed it, then I should have to live with the results and decide to quit promoting casinos that have this policy in effect if I want to.

Second, I can operate all month thinking I have a fairly decent sized payday coming from 400 only to find on the first of the following month that a large chunk of my commission is gone to a calculation I have no way of anticipating the impact of. I also feel uncomfortable to be expecting my commission to drop at the end of every month.

Third, I can no longer run reports that reflect the original commission due to me for any of those periods. It is as if the "adjustment" they make retroactivly adjust the stats. I would have no absolute proof if I had not retained my daily adding machine tape runs.

Fourth, this has the potential to be a big downer for the affiliate. Let me explain:

I have been told that 5% of every dollar played on a progressive game goes to the progressive jackpot pool. For the sake of simplicity assume that the affiliate portion is 2% - I am told that the affiliate program pays the other 3%. If your player wins a progressive jackpot, you the affiliate are credited back with all of the contributions which were previously deducted from your affiliate earnings - for that one player only.

Suppose a player deposits $20K and plays progressives and never wins anything. To make the calculations easier assume a 40% commission rate. After the player loses their $20K, the affiliate commission is $8k, but, 2% of the $20k played thru the progressive games is deducted from those commissions. This amount would be $400. The net commission is $7,600 - 38%. Nothing to cry about there.

However, suppose this same player, on their very last spin before they have exhausted their $20K deposit hits a $100K jackpot. Now, the player is up $80K. The affiliate has contributed $400 to the progressive jackpot, but they have been credited that same amount back. The affiliate is effectively even. Now the player plays $80K on progressives, wins nothing and cashes out with their original $20k.

The player is even. However, the affiliate has had their account charged for 2% X $80K in progressive play or $1,600. Since the player is even when cashing out, the affiliate makes no money on that player, but, they will have $1,600 charged against commissions earned from other players. Doesn't sound that great, does it.

In my case,I finally get a big player who deposited $22K and lost it all. You would think I would be making somewhere around $9k as my commission. Not even close. I have been told that this player wagered a little over $138,000 on progressive slots. I have been charged almost $3k for contributions to the progressive jackpots. My question to 400 is how can the player have played $138,000 if they only deposited $22K unless they won at some point. And, why have I not been given credit for those wins as I was told the program is supposed to work.

400 and I have been talking about this since the first of February. Three days ago I was told that that my account was going to be audited to determine how everything was calculated and get to the bottom of things. Jax assures me that numerous messages have been sent to Rival. Jason too has told me he would contact Rival about this. To me, this should be easy to figure out. I sat in on an IRS audit with a client of mine all day yesterday and I can guarantee you that we thru calculations much more difficult than this. I cannot see why it would take more than an hour to figure this out, let alone three days. Frustration is starting to set in on my part.

It also appears that this is happening at many if not all Rival casinos. But, one aff mgr has told me that the deductions are made in real time, not at the end of the month. Another has communicated to me that the affiliate program has the ability to turn on or off the settings that charge affiliates for the contributions to progressive jackpot pools and also the setting that gives us a credit back for the contributions one of our players made to the pool when they win.

I am in the process of contacting aff mgrs at RTG and Vegas Tech casinos to see if there are any deductions at these programs of which I am unaware, including progressive jackpot contributions.

What I am waiting for right now is an explanation from 400 of how these deductions for contributions to progressive jackpots were calculated and why it "appears" that I have not been given credit back for wins. Further, I want to know if they plan on refunding all of the net deductions from my affiliate commissions for a "program" I was never given notification of. If this is resolved I have no problem continuing with 400 and Paradise 8, or any Rival casino for that matter. I just want to be given a "choice" - a chance to make a decision up front as far as my willingness to be subject to these conditions should they continue on in their present form.

Again, I feel strongly that I should have been notified before they started making these deductions. If they did notify me and I missed it - then bad on me. However, I really do not recall receiving an email to that effect nor did I see any evidence of any kind of notification on their (400) website.

What I would like - other than the return of the amounts deducted from my commissions - is to know if anyone else has experienced the same thing?

Just how exactly are these deductions supposed to be handled by Rival affiliate programs? Are they all the same?

If there are Rival affiliate programs that do not charge the contributions to the progressive jackpots to affiliates, I would like to hear from you as I may have an opening for a Rival casino to promote.
 

chuchu59

gambling addict
PABnonaccred
CAG
Joined
Sep 26, 2004
Location
SOMEWHERE IN ASIA
What rant? This is exactly what affiliates should be telling us. It seemed they first lied in your face and now that you have queried this, they finally own up. In other words, you are being screwed without knowing about it previously.

I am not an affiliate but I cannot understand why affiliates should bear the burden of contributing to the progressives. Was this initiated after the Irish Luck fiasco. I have a feeling it was.
 

Pinababy69

RIP Lisa
Joined
Oct 15, 2004
Location
Toronto, Ontario - Canada
I read your posts over at the GPWA Steve S., and gotta say, it doesn't surprise me at all. I've long been saying that this "group" or software company is not on the up and up. They don't treat players right, why would they treat affiliates any better? Chuchu is probably right about the Irish Luck thing...which only solidified my own personal feelings about Rival as a whole. Not to mention I hate the whole white label business model...especially when it's run as poorly as this one is.

Keep us updated.
 

Steve S

Dormant account
Joined
Feb 13, 2010
Location
Dallas, TX
ChuChu59:

This is exactly the reason that this bothers me so much. If they are willing to stick it to me, their supposed business partner, how are they going to treat the players I send their way?

Another thing that really chaps my hide is that they must have put some thought into this. I mean they had to pay someone to program the system to calculate and make these deductions.

This means that there must have been some discussion...."We need progressive slots." "How are we going to fund it?" and then someone comes up with the bright idea of "I know! We'll get the affiliates to pay for it!" And then they don't tell us.

There is no way for the affiliate to come out even in this scenario. And, the bigger the player, the worse it gets. I finally catch a whale and now I am being paid less than 2/3 of our agreed upon commission rate. I checked and found no mention of this practice on their website.

They must have known that this would come to a head at some point. They must have considered possible outcomes when they devised this plan for funding their progressives. At some point, an affiliate was going land a player who would deposit and play enough that the reductions in their commissions would noticeable and large enough to inquire about.

What is more is that it appears that I am not being credited for player wins as I was told the system was supposed to work. This has been going on for three months now, it has been much more involved in the last two weeks and still I do not have any real clear answers.
 

NASHVEGAS

Banned User - flamming, disrespecting admin,
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Location
MERS
If they are willing to stick it to me, their supposed business partner, how are they going to treat the players I send their way?
They are wonderful white labels (2 exceptions), accredit them all;);):rolleyes::rolleyes:. Maybe Debbie S. can be the affy manager for all the Bonne Chance white labels.
 

NASHVEGAS

Banned User - flamming, disrespecting admin,
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Location
MERS
What rant? This is exactly what affiliates should be telling us. It seemed they first lied in your face and now that you have queried this, they finally own up. In other words, you are being screwed without knowing about it previously.

I am not an affiliate but I cannot understand why affiliates should bear the burden of contributing to the progressives. Was this initiated after the Irish Luck fiasco. I have a feeling it was
Those affiliates did not have a problem in the world (and neither did Bryan as my aged PM's et posts would, imo , prove in a court of law but not in his court) with the stealing of Progressives from players. Most affys (duly note with a limited few exceptions) are sickening and the state of New York is hopefully taking notes.
 

Steve S

Dormant account
Joined
Feb 13, 2010
Location
Dallas, TX
Nashvegas:

Personally, I take offense at your post!

I believe you will find that most affiliates are players as well. And, as such, do not want to see anyone cheated.

I can only speak for myself. I have a full-time job and am a casino affiliate in my spare time. I do not need the money I earn from promoting casinos to pay my bills. I have only a limited amount of time to spend on this endeavor. However, if I hear of a casino cheating a player, I will not promote them.

It is probably a grave error on my part that I have not participated in forums like this until now. However, I plan to pay more attention to industry issues from this point forward.
 

NASHVEGAS

Banned User - flamming, disrespecting admin,
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Location
MERS
Nashvegas:

Personally, I take offense at your post!
You take offense to me on the internet, that is your problem!!

I believe you will find that most affiliates are players as well.And, as such, do not want to see anyone cheated.

I can only speak for myself. I have a full-time job and am a casino affiliate in my spare time. I do not need the money I earn from promoting casinos to pay my bills. I have only a limited amount of time to spend on this endeavor. However, if I hear of a casino cheating a player, I will not promote them.

It is probably a grave error on my part that I have not participated in forums like this until now. However, I plan to pay more attention to industry issues from this point forward
Same story, different day but since you have not been privy (not that it mattered to webmasters or affys) to some 2 year old posts and PM's you get a pass and my prior post was not specifically aimed at you personally. If you mean what you say, all Bonne Chance white labels , well you figure it out.:)
 
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