Ok so this contest I'm taking part in...I gotta talk about it again. I promise I will get back into my "normal" blog routine, but I have to vent a little here.
So to win this particular contest from www.Karikuy.org, one of the easiest ways to get points is to "Tweet" random facts about Peru, followed by two particular hashtags (#Karikuy & #travel) and the link to their contest (http://ow.ly/YOgN). Cool. Well, I've done a boatload of those, though I was doing it sort of sporadically and apologetically so as not to completely overwhelm my followers (though to some I'm sure it was too much). I gained a #1 position in the rankings of this contest, which was cool and encouraging - especially considering that I'd entered the contest by accident when I was writing for another blog!
Well, today I'm not number one, which is ok. Except...what bothers me about the person in the number one position is that it's abundantly clear that they created this particular Twitter account - today - solely for the purpose of Twittering entries in this contest. My guess is that they have a "real" Twitter account but chose not to use it to Tweet so they didn't risk losing any followers (since in 1/2 a day they posted 242 Tweets).
I mean, the whole point of entries gaining you points in these contests is to help the company giving away the prize by essentially marketing for them! You post their link and info they want out there, and they hope that generates buzz for them from your followers. Cool and smart, right? Well if this person created their Twitter account only for this contest, they had no followers to begin with! Certainly they've gained a few in the days since signing up, but to me it totally defeats the marketing purpose. It's not against the rules, certainly, but my guess is that next year when this contest is run, the people at Karikuy.org will have to think about how to avoid those kinds of entries.
I guess it's a learning and growing community over at Twitter, and certainly I'm learning a lot for the contests I run. Though I'm pretty certain I won't be giving away any big trips to Machu Picchu anytime soon!
Anyway, good luck to all (!), and to all good luck. Or whatever.