Ladbrokes unwilling to stop spam

zebedy

No!!!! Im Spartacus
Joined
Jun 1, 2007
Location
Up a Tree
I have been receiving lots of spam recently from a ladbrokes affiliate, i reported it to ladbrokes and there reply totally shocked me,
yes my account is set to receive promotions from ladbrokes but not from spammy affiliates,:mad:


Dear
Thank you for your e-mail.
The promotion that you are receiving is relating to our TV free 25
bonus.
If you are being sent this promotion via an affiliate then unfortunately
there is nothing we can do to stop this.

Your account is currently set to receive information from Ladbrokes via
email, letter, telephone and SMS.
The section of your account that allowed you to choose if you wished our
partners to send you information was set to 'unknown'. We have now set
this to 'no' which may help the situation.
You could also set your spam filter to a higher level in a hope to
filter out more promotional material from other parties.

We hope that this information has been beneficial to you, however if we
can be of any further assistance then please contact us again.

Kind regards,

Yvette
Ladbrokes Online Gaming
Promotions Team
 

vinylweatherman

You type well loads
Joined
Oct 14, 2004
Location
United Kingdom
It probably means THEY passed on your email address to a "partner" because said field was set to "unknown" at the time, but they have no means to RECALL this permission. The "partner" was probably a marketing agency, rather than an "affiliate". The fact it was the "TV Ad" promo supports this, it would be marketed (sent/spammed whatever) to those on the database likely to have seen the TV Ad.

The fact that the field can EVER have a value of "unknown" it a technical failure on THEIR part. WORSE STILL, "unknown" was interpreted as "yes" by them. It should have been interpreted as "no", a "fail safe" option to protect the privacy of one of their players. They could then have contacted you to ask what you wanted with regard to passing your details to "partners" BEFORE they did it.

They may even be in breach of privacy rules by interpreting a lack of opinion either way (field set "unknown") as permission to pass your details on.
Privacy rules require an EXPLICIT expression of permission, even though some companies try to trick you with a play on words (such as "tick here if you DON'T", whilst others are "tick here if you DO"), "unknown" is just that, no EXPLICIT permission given. The fact the filed was "unknown" might indicate they didn't ALLOW you access to set this field with whatever application process you used, or that they had an over complicated form which lacked checking for validity of fields before allowing it to be sublitted and processed. Most forms will return an error in this situation, and indicate a field needs setting, or filling in, even though many forms do this in an unclear and confusing manner (personal experience;)).
 

RandomEvent

Dormant account
Joined
Oct 8, 2009
Location
Old House At Home - England
Yeah, when I first did a ladbrokes account a couple of years ago, I created a new email address for the purposes for any gambling. I noticed not long after signing up that I was getting spam. I was to say somewhat annoyed about this issue. I chose in the end not to use them and to not use that email address again for any other reason than casinos etc.
 

AndyScott

Dormant account
Joined
Oct 31, 2008
Location
Sydney
Hi Zebedy,

I would like to assure you that we do not share player information with any third party be it agencies we work with or our affiliate partners.

We do not condone the activity of spamming from our affiliates and always act in good faith that they are sending promotions to players that have requested to be on their database. Obviously on this occasion, this has not happened.

If you still have the email in question, please forward to me (andrew.scott@ladbrokes.co.uk) and I will take this up with the sender.

Apologies for any inconvenience caused by this.

Kind Regards,

Andy
 

vinylweatherman

You type well loads
Joined
Oct 14, 2004
Location
United Kingdom
Hi Zebedy,

I would like to assure you that we do not share player information with any third party be it agencies we work with or our affiliate partners.

We do not condone the activity of spamming from our affiliates and always act in good faith that they are sending promotions to players that have requested to be on their database. Obviously on this occasion, this has not happened.

If you still have the email in question, please forward to me (andrew.scott@ladbrokes.co.uk) and I will take this up with the sender.

Apologies for any inconvenience caused by this.

Kind Regards,

Andy

Yet in your CS reply to Zebedy they said

The section of your account that allowed you to choose if you wished our
partners to send you information was set to 'unknown'. We have now set
this to 'no' which may help the situation.

This reply clearly implies that you have a system in place that allows "partners" to send your players information, and in order for this to work, these "partners" would have to be given players' email addresses as a minimum, and probably first names in order for the information to be personalised.
The CS went on to tell Zebedy that this permission field had been set to "no", so that "partners" would no longer be allowed to send information to him. The problem is that one an email address is "out there" among the spammers, it is too late to reverse the damage.

If Ladbrokes "do not share player information with any third party be it agencies we work with or our affiliate partners", then WHY does this system for saying "yes" or "no" to this on player accounts exist?

I also believe this to be untrue.

The Ladbrokes scratchcard promo is NOT done "in house". By necessity, the agency that produces the scratchcards has to be sent a list of players who qualify, so that they know who to send the scratchcards to. This list is email addresses, but the scratchcard comes with an encoded link to claim the prize, and this encoding carries the player username, and this is then decoded, and presented as a pre-filled field in the claim form.

I have come by this information from YOUR OWN PROMOTIONS TEAM, because there were many problems in these promotions last christmas and early part of 2009, and I received this information in the many "excuses" for the failures. One excuse in particular was down to the promotions team being unable to get the agency dealing with the scratchcards to reply to a query for over 3 DAYS, and my issue simply had to be put "on hold" despite me being promised resolution within 24 hours. If this agency was NOT a "third party", Ladbrokes would have had FULL CONTROL over the operation, as it would have been "in house", and the promotion team would have had everything they needed at their fingertips to fully investigate the query straight away.
 

AndyScott

Dormant account
Joined
Oct 31, 2008
Location
Sydney
Thank you for your posts and I can understand your obvious concerns. Our customer services representative was referring to a redundant function in our back-end system. This can be selected to yes, no or unknown, it will not make a difference. It is company policy not to share our player information with any third party and this is reflected in our registration form.

I can only apologise for the mis-communication but hope you understand that this is all that it was.

Regarding the Scratchcards, we employed a service provider to carry this promotion out. We did not "share" our player database with them and there is absolutely no way that this company can use our information for spam or any other function. It would be absolutely against our best interests to do so.

Going forward, if you receive spam from affiliates that you have not signed up for, please send the communication to me and I will follow this up.

Kind regards,
Andy

andrew.scott@ladbrokes.co.uk
 

vinylweatherman

You type well loads
Joined
Oct 14, 2004
Location
United Kingdom
Thank you for your posts and I can understand your obvious concerns. Our customer services representative was referring to a redundant function in our back-end system. This can be selected to yes, no or unknown, it will not make a difference. It is company policy not to share our player information with any third party and this is reflected in our registration form.

I can only apologise for the mis-communication but hope you understand that this is all that it was.

Regarding the Scratchcards, we employed a service provider to carry this promotion out. We did not "share" our player database with them and there is absolutely no way that this company can use our information for spam or any other function. It would be absolutely against our best interests to do so.

Going forward, if you receive spam from affiliates that you have not signed up for, please send the communication to me and I will follow this up.

Kind regards,
Andy

So how DOES this provider operate this promotion WITHOUT having our email addresses. In other words, how do they send them out to us, they certainly ARRIVE to my email address, and carry my player login name encoded in the "click here to claim" link after the scratchcard game has been played.

This DOES explain how the field was found to be set to "unknown" though, a redundant system that no longer gets a value assigned to it during registration. Unfortunately, leaving it there has in this case created confusion with CS believing it to be an explanation for the emails being sent by a "third party", which is probably an affiliate.

Having CS inform a player that

If you are being sent this promotion via an affiliate then unfortunately there is nothing we can do to stop this.

is not satisfactory, enforcing the rules against the use of spam by affiliates is what is needed, because they are unlikely to continue the practice if they risk losing not only the commission from the spamming campaign, but ALL unpaid commission by having their affiliate account suspended.
Affiliates should be prepared to PROVE they are operating a proper "opt in" mailing list by being able to supply details of the "opt in" for any email address that subsequently generates a spam complaint.
 
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