20 October 2006

If you agree that you shouldn't check this box, check this box []

I enter sweepstakes. It's a hobby. Go on--check my profile, it's there. I run hot and cold on it. I'll sweep heavily for a month or so and then leave it alone for six months or so. I enter a huge variety of sweepstakes when I'm active.

Two MAJOR plugs:

1) online-sweepstakes.com is pure genius. It's almost every sweepstakes imaginable (certainly enough for me), with usable links, extremely well organized, and the basic level is free!

2) Roboform is also pure genius. You fill in your basic information once and then you let Roboform auto-populate the forms you want to submit. A pleasure!

This makes sweeping much easier and more enjoyable than the olden days. Remember that blog on the joys of long-hand versus electronic? It doesn't apply to sweeping.

And I've won. Everything from token things like a "mini-Sharpie", t-shirt, baseball cap, etc. to bigger things like a color printer, a basket full of groceries, $25 gift cards, $100 cash, etc. The universe has been very good to me and I'm grateful.

What I don't like: When you dutifully enter your information and they try to trip you up with the check boxes. It looks something like this:


Check here,
If you would like to receive a free 2 month trial subscription [*] Yes [ ] No
If you would like to receive valuable offers from our associates [ ] Yes [*] No
If you don't want to forever be on our mailing list of trivial, useless info [*] Yes [ ] No

So if you're not careful in checking and deciphering the wording and/or toggling/untoggling radio buttons, you wind up with something you never wanted. I don't mind them asking... I get the whole idea that the sweepstakes entry is a lure to get you to look at their advertising. What bothers me is the intentionally goofy way some check box lists are set up to trip you up. Or the way they "bury" a pre-checked box way down so that you have to scroll all the way down to see it, even though the submit button is only half-way down the page. This leads me to another plus for online-sweepstakes.com: users catch these things and warn others about them in the "Notes" section! Strong community there. Really a model of abundance thinking!

No comments: