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Unread 13th July 2009, 10:28 PM   #101
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Killer Joe View Post
What also strikes me as odd is that if you had posted that someone was siphoning off your Adwords clicks and directing it to a site that mimicked your site's name you would have seen some of the same posters gnashing their teeth and wailing in outrage that some scoundral would do that to you.
I wouldn't. If you mistype the URL in your AdWords PPC campaign, and traffic goes to someone else while you pay for it, you're an idiot. The longer it takes you to figure out you typed the wrong URL, the bigger an idiot you are. And everyone should laugh at you. I certainly will.

And you have every right to do the same to me: if I mistype my URL on an AdWords campaign, you have my permission to set up a site at the misspelled domain and collect all the traffic I send you as long as I keep doing it. And you can call me an idiot and laugh at me when I find out, too.

Because if I ever do that, I am an idiot, and I deserve to have people laugh at me. I'll laugh right along with them.

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Unread 13th July 2009, 10:36 PM   #102
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

Well CDarklock,

Hang around here long enough and you'll see my words are true. Obviously not in your case, but by and large, that's how the cookie crumbles.

KJ

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Unread 13th July 2009, 10:51 PM   #103
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

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Originally Posted by Killer Joe View Post
Hang around here long enough and you'll see my words are true.
Oh, I know they are. I've been studying the formation and development of online communities for years. They all work like this.

"The Golden Town is the Golden Town no longer. They have sold their pillars for brass and their temples for money, they have made coins out of their golden doors. It is become a dark town full of trouble, there is no ease in its streets, beauty has left it and the old songs are gone." - Lord Dunsany, The Messengers
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Unread 13th July 2009, 11:23 PM   #104
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

I don't know whether it is unethical or not.
If you feel truly okay with it that is a simple
barometer.

What is done is done, however from a business
stand point this is a small short term gain.

I don't judge people so right or wrong is a relative
term.

However if in the future a person on this forum found
a mistake similiar to this I would suggest to maximize
your profits by starting a new profit center.

Approach the the competition as a would be client and or partner
and offer your service by presenting yourself as the neighborhood
professional whose expertise is to make sure quality control is
delivered.

Owning the domain name gives you negotiating power.
Finding and presenting the problem then yourself as
the solution gives you credibility and leverage.

I would even use this last situation as a case study.

If nothing else you make a link partner or someone
who may let you promote to his or her list for
a thank you.

Relationship building is a priceless commodity even
among competitors.

Just a thought .

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

yves
the mentor on demand
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Unread 13th July 2009, 11:27 PM   #105
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

No, it's nothing personal, it's business. Lol!

Well, it actually depends on what personally feel on ethical values. Just bear in mind, what goes around comes around

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Unread 14th July 2009, 01:08 AM   #106
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

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Originally Posted by garyv View Post
Actually it is mine. I paid for the domain, and he's sending the traffic to me. I'm not taking it. He's sending it. If someone sends something to you, that is not stealing.

Yes I asked if you thought it was unethical, and you do you've made that clear. And I'm absolutely fine that you think that way. You're obviously in the minority here.
If you had already owned the domain and this person was sending you traffic by mistake and you tried to contact him to no avail, then I'd agree - it's serendipity at it's best.

But, as you stated, you registered the domain after the fact with the intent of knowingly capturing traffic paid for by someone else without their knowledge or permission. Setting aside the ethics of the situation, I "think" that may be illegal.

If it were me, I'd have researched it [legalities] carefully and maybe consult with a lawyer who has expertise in this area, before committing to the domain registration.

Ethically, I don't think I'd have done the same thing in your position, but that's me. From a business perspective, I don't see any real longevity to the traffic anyways, so the effort would seem to be a moot point.

Since you already registered the domain, you could just slap a redirect on it back to the right domain and call it good.
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Unread 14th July 2009, 01:14 AM   #107
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

That is very bad, you shouldn't do such a thing. It is unethnical....




but it is not unethnical if your competitors takes advantage of your mistake.
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Unread 14th July 2009, 01:25 AM   #108
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

Hmmm.

Let's say the postman incorrectly delivered a cheque addressed to someone else to your address. Do you rush down to the bank and open an account in that name so that you can cash the cheque?

Alex

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Unread 14th July 2009, 01:37 AM   #109
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

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Originally Posted by Black Hat Cat View Post
There's no controversy here, just a few morons. They're allowed to post here too, lol.



Yeah, that's what he should do....run to his lawyer over a $10 domain registration and the $20 this clown will waste on this campaign before he figures out what he's done. As often as some of you seem to run to your lawyer, I'm surprised you have any money left at all.

Sheesh, this advertiser will likely never know when this domain was registered, let alone why. So good luck proving that one....if it even is illegal.
Well, maybe that's because some of us have a hell of lot more to lose than you do.

That measly $10 domain registration could end up costing a fortune in legal fees, fines and other penalties.

It's called Risk Management - something a lot of marketers know nothing about because they assume that if it's done online, they can get away with it.
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Unread 14th July 2009, 01:46 AM   #110
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexR View Post
Hmmm.

Let's say the postman incorrectly delivered a cheque addressed to someone else to your address. Do you rush down to the bank and open an account in that name so that you can cash the cheque?

Alex
Sorry, not a comparable scenario. Checks can be returned. Traffic can not.

A more comparable scenario would be - What if the postman incorrectly delivered a bag of cash to your address and said that it was set to burst into flames and burn to ashes if no one claimed it immediately. Would you claim it?

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Unread 14th July 2009, 01:49 AM   #111
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BIG Mike View Post
Well, maybe that's because some of us have a hell of lot more to lose than you do.

That measly $10 domain registration could end up costing a fortune in legal fees, fines and other penalties.

It's called Risk Management - something a lot of marketers know nothing about because they assume that if it's done online, they can get away with it.

Big Mike, normally I agree with everything you say. But it doesn't take a legal genius to know that no crime was committed here. Not even close.

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Unread 14th July 2009, 02:01 AM   #112
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

In the world of business, he who builds the better mousetrap will reap the spoils!

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Unread 14th July 2009, 03:05 AM   #113
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

Quote:
Originally Posted by garyv View Post
Big Mike, normally I agree with everything you say. But it doesn't take a legal genius to know that no crime was committed here. Not even close.
I didn't say a crime was committed Gary, and it's precisely because I'm not a legal genius (and assuming you're not either), that I suggested it merits checking out.

While on the surface it may appear harmless (and perhaps it is), you don't know with any absolute certainty that a crime wasn't committed, however inadvertently. You're making an assumption that one wasn't, but that doesn't make it true one way or the other.

And clearly, by posting in a public forum with all the details, there's some
doubt in your mind if this was the right thing to do or not. I commented in the thread because it's only being viewed as an issue of ethics.

I stated what I would do - mainly in the interest of risk management. It sounds to me like there are more than ethical issues here and it could bit you in the ass. Or not.

Measuring the risk of a $10 investment against possible outcomes should be part of the discussion (my opinion).

In the end, it's not up to you or me or anyone here to decide if it's legal or not. The only real test would be if the domain owner decided to pursue it through legal channels.
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Unread 14th July 2009, 06:03 AM   #114
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

Theres a saying that comes to mind. STRIKE while the IRON is STILL HOT!

hates the rain
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Unread 14th July 2009, 06:28 AM   #115
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

Autoschediastic, that's what you have done, you saw the opportunity of making something out of wasted traffic with the first intent of contacting the owner of the misspelled site and being unable to contact it you decided to just cash in. Nothing wrong with that, it is like if you find a hundred dollars bill, what would you do? keep it if you don't know who it belongs to, I'm sure that if you knew who owns that site you will let them know about it, I have seen errors on web pages like broken links or some like that and was able to contact the owner and get him to correct the problem, a couple of them actually have a link to my site since I contacted them on good faith, so what you have done it's not unethical in any manner, not at all, keep it up.

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Unread 14th July 2009, 06:49 AM   #116
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

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LOL @CmdrStidd thanks for the religious angle on this!!

The Bible - average book with a bloody good marketing campaign
Hello Joeman,

Normally I do not involve the Bible on this forum because it is not the place for it, however, I can't stand to see someone pick and choose scriptures to use that make themselves look so much better than everyone else. That is the same trick that the Pharisees and Scribes did in Jesus time.

Besides, I want him to know that when it comes to the scriptures, I am very well versed in what is in them. (Pun not intended but will be taken )
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Unread 14th July 2009, 07:07 AM   #117
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

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First off, because of all the hoopla about lawyers and such, I called a dear friend of mine that handles most of my internet dealings. I laid out the scenario as it is stated here with all the known facts and asked the simple question of "Did person A commit a crime or not?" The answer was a flat out NO! There was no crime committed and therefore there can be no lawsuits and no legal fees and so on and so forth. That ends the issue of a crime.
Since you're posting what amounts to legal advice, please also post the name and contact information of the source.

Your post is a perfect example of exactly why NO ONE should ever ask for or follow legal advice in a public forum like this. You're essentially giving the OP an unqualified legal opinion (unless you yourself are a lawyer, in which case I apologize.)

Folks, NEVER take a post that starts out, "I spoke to a _______ friend..." as gospel. Chances are that person did not receive all the facts and cannot possibly issue an opinion that is legally accurate and binding worldwide.

Additionally, assuming that no crime has been committed, there is still the possibility of civil action, which does not necessarily require that a crime has been committed.

So don't say "therefore there can be no lawsuits and no legal fees" - because in that statement you are utterly wrong.
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Unread 14th July 2009, 07:23 AM   #118
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Default Re: Is it unethical to take advantage of a competitor's mistake?

Unethical yes and potentially illegal if you're profiting from someone else's trademark.

Tyrus

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