How are Tech "giveaways" legal?

Something that has bothered me for a while, I’m sure you’ve all seen them… I am of course refering to giveaways that require you to like a post, follow some account on fb or twitch, watch a video, etc. How on Earth are these legal? Most sites have TOS clauses that forbid botting which is what they’re doing.

Forgive my ignorance, but how is it botting?


Let me get that straight… I won’t to give someone something for free and I am not allowed… Why can’t I give people stuff for free exactly?
Mom and dad gave me stuff for free all my life. They still do. My ex gave me stuff for free, why shouldn’t I give other people stuff for free?


I don’t think he is mad at giveaways in general. Just the ones that have a barrier to entry.

In the US all giveaways must be a no purchase necessary type deal. When you ask someone to subscribe or do whatever was mentioned, realistically you broke the law.

In most places in the world, you cannot have a giveaway that requires payment to entry.

Edit: I don’t know what botting is, so maybe he is talking about something else and I got the plot all wrong.

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There is no relationship between the user and the act. What I mean is take Twitch, a follow is what youtube calls a subscribe while subscribe has a different meaning on Twitch. In both cases though channels are rated based on that metric which is supposed to be an indication of actual engaged users. That is also directly tied to their monetary value on the platform.

I’m not against giveaways but I am absolutely against having to do something for it while at the same time the promoters are claiming no purchase is necessary – something that has a legal implication. It’s also not clear to users what relationship those middle brands have with the promoter especially wrt privacy.

To be clear this is not specific to Level1 nor any giveaways they have done or will do. If anything it was triggered (used lightly), by Paul’s Hardware doing a giveaway for a beast of a PC. The devil however is in the details, and he wants your soul for it too.

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I understand your argument, but at the same time you can unsub immediately, which is usually what I do for channels I don’t want to follow. I usually just don’t participate though, the odds are always bad.


When you’re doing a giveaway you kind of need a way to keep track of entrants and using subscribers…works, cant just say “YOU THERE RANDOM CITIZEN, CONGRATULATIONS”, its not purely about boosting subs.

no one is buying anything and if you think subbing to a channel is a purchase I dont know how to help you

Oh for fucks sake with this nonsense. I bet you keep your phone in a faraday cage when you’re not using it



A Sweepstakes is a campaign in which entrants can win a prize based on chance . No purchase, payment, or other consideration is permitted, and the winner is picked at random. The element of consideration must not exist in a Sweepstakes. Caution: consideration is anything of value the contestant must give up to participate, monetary or non-monetary, and can exist if the contestant must expend substantial time or effort that benefits the sponsor. For example, some states have determined that providing contact information is consideration if the information is to be used for marketing purposes.

Would subscribing be a consideration?.. even tho it’s not being used for marketing purposes they are giving up their… hmmm. Idk. :thinking:

Edit: realistically thinking about it, wouldn’t subscribing be a form of marketing? Because the creator of the giveaway is going to get an increase of subs and then market that data to YouTube for example.

Lawyer here, subscribing to a youtube channel is not consideration in a contract context. It’s not money and doesn’t require any meaningful effort.


I think, perhaps, what you might really want, OP, is for things to be transparently recontextualized?


I never said that. You’re conflating logistics, specfically the entry. Be it a raffle, giveaway, or whatever legal term you want, I suppose it would be a surprise to you that such giveaways do infact exist.

I never said that either. My question was more breaking the platforms TOS/AUP.

Yeah I’m done with you. What a phone or any other comment from you had to do with what I said will forever remain in your mind. Had you actually looked at one of the contests (non-legal definition), you would have known the lengths required to enter.

Good to know. I didn’t say that however.

ie, More engagement, more money for them. It’s also why at least some platforms ban botting / inflating those metrics.

As I understand it, yes, it should be. Thought it was an interesting question, certainly didn’t intend to offend people.

Depends on the marketing and site but they may keep a copy of your data anyway. Example is Cambridge Analytica.

I don’t really see any legal issues impeding around these giveaways. There’s nothing so different about tech giveaways requiring you to do any particular stuff in order to qualify for an entry, compared to traditional giveaways where you have to meet certain requirements, answer some questionnaires, give up your contact info (well obviously or how else they can contact you should you be within the good odds?) and do a hokey pokey and turn around. That’s what giveaways are about. If there are no requirements for any giveaway, this will make it hard for promoters to manage the giveaway.

Reference: IIRC, when we used to do giveaways in a traditional way years ago, it would have been so difficult to keep track of the entrants, considering it would’ve been over 1000 entries made. Oh, and the reason why you think promoters are asking you to do this shit and that shit is to deter entrants from making duplicated accounts so they gain more chances of winning in a giveaway, which wouldn’t be fair for others who just want a chance in an even-level gameplay. Besides, how would you even find time to manage multiple email accounts if you even tried to dupe your entries to see if one of your lucky email accounts won anything?

Of what you have said so far the only things that you appear to not like are that the promoting party and/or their sponsors are making advertisement revenue from the giveaway, and their outward showing analytics (subscriber count/viewer engagement) are temporarily inflated. Background and averaged analytics are rarely affected by these kinds of events.

Is there any specific legal article that you feel is being violated by these kinds of events, or do you just take personal umbrage with the whole practice?

Believe it or not there are botnets that do exactly that. They can even answer capatchas if needed. Their identities are either completely made up or based on stolen ids etc. As for the legality, I don’t know thus the question. There are a lot of restrictions around the very language used and for good reason. Is it a giveaway or a legally speaking, lottery and under what jurisdiction? Giveaways involving skill testing questions for example are special in Canada at least.

Agreed but I’m not talking about agregate or averaged data. Quite frankly if it throws off even one of their stats I’d be happy. The reality is some of those platforms will use the data in other ways. Facebook and Google for example showing target ads.

The TOS /AUP of the sites in question. The legal jurisdiction, if any, these fall under.

One of the interesting things about the example I gave above is a requirement to give your “tax information [if you win]”. I’m not entirely sure how that is relevant nor if it only applies to certain areas. Giving up my social insurance number though would not be acceptable.

But that is not needed. Afaic in the case of winning you need to provide Name + Address and thats that.

And before that you can spoof your email and your information as you like.

So I would say: Its sorta easy to protect your data AND get into the give-away lucky bunch which is, from your point of view, sorta illegal BUT you also not need to provide all the legally required data to do so.

So either: Full enforcement of the law OR sorta kinda law-ish okay give aways.

And I would say: Let people do give aways, let people get the chance for a new MoBo or something.

I suppose technically yes. But the like of YouTube also benefit. More people in general mean more for them and a little more for the person holding the giveaway, so they allow it with caveats which almost all follow and the ones that don’t are not tolerated.

Well okay but that answers everything else.

See first point.

That can and will not matter if you enter a give away or not, one way or another they have all that information anyway. So not worth worrying about.

That is a whole other thing, they got it all from facebook themselves, not harvesting it themselves really. But there is a lot more in there and very little to do with giveaways so an apples and oranges problem.

This is why you will find the giveaway on say YouTube, enter it on Gleam and have to reply to an email or twitter post, helps weed out the bots.

Well what are you actually wanting to know as this is getting circular quickly. Plain simple English, what are you annoyed about as the answers are all there from every point of view at this stage.

Again point one, it is an accepted grey area because all parties benefit.

I have never seen that, Is it an actual thing or just hyperbola, if so it is not relevant because it is just a hypothetical.

So what is it you actually want to know? With out a long winded story and off shoots in ever direction or hyperbole. Just a one liner, what is it?


That makes absolutely no sense. Fouquin asked for a specific example, I gave some. There’s nothing “technically” right about it. It’s completely right and valid to ask.

?? How.

Thankfully we have laws forbidding such collection. Not sure where you’re getting that from.

Agreed. If you’d actually read what I was responding to you’d have seen it was addressing the notion that unsubbing removed access.

Bots are clearly smarter then you are aware of because that does nothing of the sort.

What are you going on about? It was a question guy, intended to solicit comments. There is no right or wrong.

Assuming you meant hyperbole … What? You’ve never seen it before so therefore it’s hypothetical?? Did you even look ? I’ve resisted the urge to link directly to it but you’re not leaving me with many options…

As for the rest of this thread, yikes.

Okay cool so this entire topic is useless nonsense.