Apple doesn't care for third party giveaways of iPads, iPhones or iTunes gift cards

For most companies, the idea of a group giving away one of their products for free would be a very welcome prospect. After all it's free publicity for their product and its even better when the person or group who gives it away pays for the product before its given out in a contest. Well, that's not the case with Apple. The company, already known for doing things differently, has some very strict rules about giveaways for their products and some people this week ran afoul of Apple's rules when they tried to give away new iPads.

According to CNN-Fortune's story, a local TV station (WTVD-TV in Durham, N.C.) launched a sweepstakes to give away 11 of Apple's hot selling iPads. That caught the attention of Apple who had posted up a list of guidelines for third part promotions of its products last January on Apple's web site. While the guidelines have been posted up since the beginning of this year Apple has apparently started to actually enforce them.

Among the guidelines are that iPads, along with iPhones and iTunes gift cards, cannot be used in third party promotions at all (the guidelines put this bit in italics). The iPod Touch can be used for giveaways but only if the third party decides to purchase a minimal of 250 units from Apple. Also the word "free" cannot be used "in a prominent manner (headlines, callouts, etc.)" for a giveaway and any other use of the word "free" is "strongly discouraged". Finally all materials related to any giveaway of an Apple product must be approved by Apple beforehand.

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Wow, according the guidelines, you can't even use the Myriad Font. While I can understand Apple trying to distance itself from any promotion gone wrong, this is insane.

Apple never wants to give anything for free as then they would loose money and "money" is all that Apple cares about.if apple relaxed their silly rules then they would get more popular.

soldier1st said,
Apple never wants to give anything for free as then they would loose money and "money" is all that Apple cares about.if apple relaxed their silly rules then they would get more popular.

Problem is, they're already too popular. It wouldn't be offered as a promotion if nobody wanted it. I don't often hear of other tablet or computers offered as a giveaway, or even Zune Marketplace cards lol.

I see a few Apple fanboys defending Apple over this. You know they are wrong about it, either that or you are also a prick in life.

You buy something, and you have every right to do with it as you wish, no matter what any man made law says.

I think Microsoft got in trouble for claiming people couldn't resell the free versions of Windows they received. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think a judge ruled that you can resell it.

jd100 said,
I see a few Apple fanboys defending Apple over this. You know they are wrong about it, either that or you are also a prick in life.

You buy something, and you have every right to do with it as you wish, no matter what any man made law says.

I think Microsoft got in trouble for claiming people couldn't resell the free versions of Windows they received. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think a judge ruled that you can resell it.

This isn't about reselling though is it? I mean... isn't this something that's practiced in retail all the time? Brands who think of themselves as premium never like having thier stuff given away for free. It cheapens the value of the brand. No ones saying they can't resell it... or give it away... Apple just wants to control how thier brand is percieved.

Do i agree with it... not totally... but if i had a brand i thoughtof as premium... I wouldn't want just anyone giving it away to just anyone and then advertising it on a national scale. But then... i'll happily say that im a prick in life so...

Someone needs to take Apple to court over this, because you can pretty well bet its illegal for Apple to do this.

Brian Miller said,
Does apple even have any legal jurisdiction on this other peoples websites, in this manner?
I highly doubt it.

I'm reminded of about... 1997 when Paramount had all star trek websites containing star trek related material shut down....

AdmiralRooster said,

I'm reminded of about... 1997 when Paramount had all star trek websites containing star trek related material shut down....

The term "star trek" is a trade mark and therefore there is legal jurisdiction. However, not allowing a company to give away their products, I don't see that is enforceable.

I was at a product launch for HP this week and there was a competition to win an iPad2 sadly it didn't come my way

craybox said,
I was at a product launch for HP this week and there was a competition to win an iPad2 sadly it didn't come my way

Seriously? You'd think they offer a WebOS tablet, or even an HP computer.

Teebor said,
HEHE this is funny, I just entered a competition to win an ipad2

it wasn't a contest to win a FREE iPad2, and I bet "Apple is not a sponsor of this contest"

Seems valid to me. A little odd that it would be enforced for something legitimate like the TV station giveaway, but a valid guideline. How many pop-ups and legitimate-looking ads do you come across daily or weekly stating that some site is giving away free iPads or iPhones only to find that it's rubbish?

Why must Apple be *****?

Anyway. I'd like to see them try and stop the owner of an iPad give it away for free to one lucky person who he happens to draw from a hat.

Deadset. They are justing making up laws as they go.

If I ever got in trouble for this, I would just give a big **** you to whoever had a problem with it.

I bought the product. I want to give it away. It is an iPad, so I will say "iPad Giveaway."


Man, the less control the better.... I'm getting more sick with all of this country's rules day by day.

Jack Musick said,
If I ever got in trouble for this, I would just give a big **** you to whoever had a problem with it.

I bought the product. I want to give it away. It is an iPad, so I will say "iPad Giveaway."


Man, the less control the better.... I'm getting more sick with all of this country's rules day by day.

Apple made the rule...not the government....

SirEvan said,

Apple made the rule...not the government....

The government had to give apple the power to make the rule. Our trademark\patent\copyright law is completely out of whack.

Ok, so now; apple does not like people/companies giving away ipads....that they bought. I guess they see it as a part of the markedchain where they don't make money

looking back , i found some groups that gave an ipad away for a good cause, if apple was smart they would of donated a few to them and would of given the image of a company who cares

red cross for easter 2011 blood drive

saint jude children's research hospital's summer 2010

wouldnt look very good for apple to sue one of them

If hell freezes over and i actually buy an apple product and they did this to me I would tell them to go f*** themselves.
People should be able to do whatever they want with them once they have paid for them.

the better twin said,
If hell freezes over and i actually buy an apple product and they did this to me I would tell them to go f*** themselves.
People should be able to do whatever they want with them once they have paid for them.

Read SkolViking's replies.
while i understand, and he's most likely correct in his assessment, without express written consent from apple, the radio station shouldn't have used any words/pics trademarked by apple. apparently apple doesn't like free publicity.

Moker said,

Read SkolViking's replies.
while i understand, and he's most likely correct in his assessment, without express written consent from apple, the radio station shouldn't have used any words/pics trademarked by apple. apparently apple doesn't like free publicity.

Apple is really becoming a company worth hating... Their practices are just so anti consumer... For no real reason.

If the TV station purchased them then they belong to the TV station and that TV station can do whatever they like with them. Whether it's giving them away or smashing them to tiny bits.
I can't see how apple can come in and tell them otherwise.

Funny, last year a local radio station in Phoenix AZ gave a way a butt load of iPad 1s customized with radio station apps as well as their logo.

techbeck said,
Funny, last year a local radio station in Phoenix AZ gave a way a butt load of iPad 1s customized with radio station apps as well as their logo.

I'll bet that wasn't approved by Apple... lol

greenwizard88 said,
Wouldn't the first sale doctrine overrule this?
No. This isn't about a TV station giving away an iPad. This is about the "promotion" of giving away an iPad. When advertising the promotion, no doubt Apple trademarks were used (a.k.a. the word "iPad"). Apple has every right to enforce and protect their trademarks. Meaning the TV station can certainly buy an iPad, then under the first sale doctrine, give the actual, physical iPad away or even resell it to whoever they want. What they can't do is run advertisements for a promotion where they use the phrase iPad, or images of an iPad, unless they have Apple's blessing.

SkolVikings said,
No. This isn't about a TV station giving away an iPad. This is about the "promotion" of giving away an iPad. When advertising the promotion, no doubt Apple trademarks were used (a.k.a. the word "iPad"). Apple has every right to enforce and protect their trademarks. Meaning the TV station can certainly buy an iPad, then under the first sale doctrine, give the actual, physical iPad away or even resell it to whoever they want. What they can't do is run advertisements for a promotion where they use the phrase iPad, or images of an iPad, unless they have Apple's blessing.

Good example of where Trademark laws are totally off the chain.
/s

Glassed Silver:mac

Buy a iPhone, iPad or Gift Card.... it is mine to use in any manor I decide.

On a side note: this is why as a company we are no longer buying Apple products.

SpyCatcher said,
Buy a iPhone, iPad or Gift Card.... it is mine to use in any manor I decide.

On a side note: this is why as a company we are no longer buying Apple products.

I woudlnt stop using a product because they wont give freebies

SpyCatcher said,
Buy a iPhone, iPad or Gift Card.... it is mine to use in any manor I decide.

On a side note: this is why as a company we are no longer buying Apple products.

These sorts of business practices are why I no longer buy Apple products either...

Magallanes said,
It is some sort of Parle (Pirates of the Caribbean),where it is not a rule but a guideline.

Guidelines like this are often enforced by some kind of law-binding contract that states it's up to Apple (or whoever) when they enforce them, so they aren't really rules.

so the ipads were "bought" already?
once they were bought, they can use any form of wording including the word "free", since the ipads no longer belong to apple, the legally belong to whoever bought them.
i hope they take apple to the wall on this one.

Moker said,
so the ipads were "bought" already?
once they were bought, they can use any form of wording including the word "free", since the ipads no longer belong to apple, the legally belong to whoever bought them.
i hope they take apple to the wall on this one.
If you purchase an iPad, then yes, you can do whatever you want with that physical iPad. However, in this case, I assume the TV station ran advertisements for the promotion. In those advertisements, they no doubt used the word "iPad" which is an Apple trademark. I believe that's the legal hook where Apple might actually have a case.

Apple certainly has no right to tell the bank that they can't buy an iPad and then give it away to a customer. They probably can enforce their trademark rights and try to control how those trademarks are used by other businesses.

SkolVikings said,
If you purchase an iPad, then yes, you can do whatever you want with that physical iPad. However, in this case, I assume the TV station ran advertisements for the promotion. In those advertisements, they no doubt used the word "iPad" which is an Apple trademark. I believe that's the legal hook where Apple might actually have a case.

Apple certainly has no right to tell the bank that they can't buy an iPad and then give it away to a customer. They probably can enforce their trademark rights and try to control how those trademarks are used by other businesses.

So what you are saying is I should phrase my ads along the following:

"Win a free tablet made by a certain popular fruity company!"

/I'm joking of course

Sraf said,
So what you are saying is I should phrase my ads along the following:

"Win a free tablet made by a certain popular fruity company!"

/I'm joking of course

I agree that would be silly. And for the record, I think what Apple's doing here is dumb. That said, while I'm no lawyer, I see this as a trademark issue that Apple would probably win in court.

Apple are good at innovation in their products and marketing, but the company is doing even better at innovating ways to find new lows.

Simon- said,
Apple are good at innovation in their products and marketing, but the company is doing even better at innovating ways to find new lows.

+1 I particularly liked the 250 unit minimum... LMAO

This isn't uncommon. The company I work for (and also part of my job) is very tight on how the product is used by third parties.

It's understandable that Apple want to control their products. If they're constantly associated with giveaways and competitions then their brand is ultimately cheapened and their products' value is diminished.

Examinus said,
This isn't uncommon. The company I work for (and also part of my job) is very tight on how the product is used by third parties.

It's understandable that Apple want to control their products. If they're constantly associated with giveaways and competitions then their brand is ultimately cheapened and their products' value is diminished.


Pfft.

GS:mac

Nice and all Apple forbids iPad giveaways, it's highly unlikely however this will ever hold up in court. At least, not in a Dutch one.

.Neo said,
Nice and all Apple forbids iPad giveaways, it's highly unlikely however this will ever hold up in court. At least, not in a Dutch one.

Where does it say its going to court? Nothing to go to court about anyway. Apple has guidelines clearly stated and the TV station didnt bother to read them or didnt are.

"you're holding it wrong"