Just because everyone else does it is not a reason why you should do it too. And just because they're "getting away with it" doesn't make the activity any less wrong, nor does it decrease the chances that you'll get caught, banned, lose commissions, fined, sued, etc.
BTW, if you're doing something that could land you in court, saying "but everyone else does it" to the judge will go over like a lead balloon.
Now, "it" could refer to anything. On this forum, "it" often means...
1. Illegally using someone else's trademark in your domain names, product names, marketing etc. *
Just because you know someone who's never been caught illegally using a trademark doesn't make it all right for you to do it too. And just because a company may not actively chase down trademark infringements today doesn't mean they won't do so in the future.
BTW -- I've actually seen some people advocating using trademark names, because "if the company wants it, they'll send a cease and desist. Then you can just stop doing using it, no biggy."
Not always. They don't have to. Yes, many companies do just send the cease and desist because it's a quicker, cheaper way to deal with it. But they can skip the cease and desist and sue instead, if they want.
*Wondering what constitutes "illegal" use of someone's trademark? Ask your lawyer.
Otherwise, don't come crying to us if and when you lose your domain or get into legal hot water.
2. Trying to circumvent some of the WF's rules.
Example: Just because you see someone post affiliate links in their sig doesn't mean the rules have suddenly changed and that it's now all right for you to do the same. It just means no one has noticed that person yet. Well, you noticed them -- so do your job as a member mod and hit the "report" button.
3. Trying to circumvent the TOS of other sites.
This includes PayPal, Google, the social media sites, other forums, blogs... and any and all sites you use. Just because "everyone else" gets away with breaking their TOS doesn't make it all right for you to do it too.
Don't come crying to us if and when you lose your account or you get banned.
4. Infringing on someone else's copyright, plagiarizing, etc.*
You see someone stripping names off articles and posting them on their blog as their own. Or altering someone else's video for their own gain. Since "everyone does it," should you do it too?
BTW -- I feel like Captain Obvious saying "no," but some folks don't have a firm grasp of the obvious.
*And once again, if you have questions about what constitutes "infringement," ask your lawyer.
Which reminds me...
5. Taking legal advice from forum members and random strangers.
People post legal questions here from time to time, such as "can I get sued if I do this?" Or, "I'm getting sued - what should I do next?"
Since "everyone" posts on forums seeking legal advice, should you too?
Heavens no. And for Pete's sake, don't actually follow any of the advice! The only legal advice you should follow on a forum is this: "Talk to an attorney."
A real one. With a bar number (where applicable) and a diploma. You'll get much better advice from a lawyer than you'll get from "skateboardguy2948" and "grrrlsrule17."
6. Making outrageous claims.
Ah, so you just received an email from your favorite marketer. And he used some pretty big and unsubstantiated claims in the email. You know for a fact that this person's marketing activities -- like your own -- fall under a regulatory body like the FTC. And you're pretty sure this marketer's email crossed the line so far that he can't even see the line any more.
So, if Joe Guru makes wild claims and can get away with it, then surely you can too since you're not even as visible in the market... right?
Buzz, wrong, thanks for playing.
Forget about what Joe Guru is doing because he's not above the law. Whether he gets caught or not has no bearing on whether you'll get caught or not if you make claims that go against the FTC regulations.
As usual, talk to your lawyer.
And if you don't talk to an attorney and persist in knowingly skirting TOS, your local laws and your local regulations, don't come back here to complain that you got caught and no one else did.