Today, Pinoy blogosphere’s hottest topic on almost every social media they have is about this DTI permit application in order for bloggers to run a contest on their respective blogs.
Contests running online is not new. Bloggers, in particular, do this in order to reward their readers who’ve been supportive with their niches. PR agencies and companies who backed most of these contests also get their own share of promotions by shouldering the contest’s prizes and giveaways. Most of the time, there are no purchase required to be qualified. Joining the contest merely requires the contestants to promote the blog and/or the sponsors by tweeting, re-tweeting or following on Twitter, liking or leaving a comment in a Facebook fan page, sharing or re-posting an article on their blogs, etc.
I’ve been following Ms. Janette Toral of the DigitalFilipino Club regarding her tweet updates on her meeting with Internet and Mobile Marketing Association of the Philippines (IMMAP) and Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). At first, I thought DTI only covers contests that require purchases to secure a permit from them for it to be a legitimate one. But just today, Social Media Contest and Promotions Philippines posted the application process to secure a DTI Sales Promotion Permit for bloggers who are running contests on their blogs even if there is no purchase required. According to the article, this is ‘to protect the consumer joining these online promotions’ and that the ‘selection of winners are done fairly and make sure they won’t be cheated.’
I, myself, is against it. It’s true that the concept behind this process will protect the consumers and present a fair game to all contestants. But the process in securing a permit is ridiculous. As what Carlo Ople posted on NewMedia.com.ph, ‘bloggers don’t have time and resources to be able to comply’ with ‘tons of documents and fees (honorarium) just to hold contests and promos.’
Most of the bloggers don’t earn much from their blogs. Prizes on these contests are shouldered by sponsors, as I’ve said. Cash is the least thing a blog contest can give out. Most of the time, a free domain registration, books, GC’s, phones and any other gadgets, a shirt and the likes are the ones being raffled off. Again, these are courtesy of the companies who sponsored blog contest.
I do hope that this policy will be amended. As I’ve read it on Social Media Contest and Promotions Philippines, there’ll be at least three more sessions with DTI that DigitalFilipino Club and IMMAP will be attending. I hope they could make a better and convenient way to secure a permit exclusive for online promotions.