Why The Majority of SEO Hero Competitors Could be Disqualified
Back on day 1 of the SEO Hero Contest I wrote a couple of posts about why the rules of the SEO Hero Challenge make it nigh on impossible to get a true result and it is effectively on the whim of the judge who (if anyone) wins – WIX SEO Hero Contest Rules and Local Entrepreneur Enters Contest to become a SEO Hero
Those 2 posts were mainly concerning the section in the rules where it says;
“The WIX SEO Hero Contest website must be created, maintained and promoted in compliance with the Google Guidelines for SEO”
What I didn’t mention at the time though was the other, far more important parts of section 4 of the rules (and other sections);
(v) contains trademarks, logos, or trade dress (such as distinctive packaging or building
exteriors/interiors) owned by others without the proper license or consent;
(vi) violates the rights of any other person or entity by using their names or images, or featuring or referring to any recognizable person, without such person’s informed consent thereto;
(vii) violates copyrighted materials owned by others (including photographs, sculptures, paintings, and other works of art or images published on or in websites, television, movies or other media);
(viii) content that denigrates, disparages or reflects negatively on the Sponsor; and/or (x)
violates any law or any legal terms applicable to such Entry, including the Facebook terms of service.”
Failure by Participant to comply with the terms of this Section 4 shall cause an automatic
disqualification of such Participant from the Contest with no right to appeal and no notice shall be required to be provided to Participant of such disqualification by Sponsor and/or by
It is each Participant’s responsibility to verify that the Hero Website they create is in compliance with any applicable law and does not violate or infringes upon any rights of third parties and that Participant owns all rights and title, or otherwise has (and will continue to have) the full power, licenses, consents and authority necessary to create the Hero Website and to include in it the content presented therein. Participants may approach their SEO hero and request his/her permission to use their likeness or other features for the Contest, as Sponsor did.”
Why could SEO Hero Competitors Get Disqualified
1. Non compliance to Google guidelines.
I doubt there is a single site that hasn’t got a link pointing to their website with the purpose of improving rankings. – Disqualified
2. Using the Google name, logo, images, branding.
At the start of the competition I requested permission from the Google Brand Permissions team to use the Google Logo, name, branding, etc. – You can see their response here – http://www.voggers.co.uk/ – Have you been granted permission to use their Logo, branding, screenshots, name, etc? – Disqualified
3. Using the Wix name, logo, images, branding, etc.
Have you been granted expressed written consent to use their Logo, branding, screenshots, name, etc? – Disqualified
4. Using anyone else’s name, logo, images, branding, etc.
Have you been granted permission to use their Logo, branding, screenshots, name, etc? – Disqualified
5. Are you basing your SEO Hero site on a Super Hero?
Even if not using images, do you have permission to create a character in the likeness of a Marvel, DC, Valiant, etc. character? – Disqualified
6. Landscape/Product Photographs.
Do you have the correct licence to display photos of distinctive buildings or packaging anywhere on your SEO Hero website? – Disqualified
7. Mentioning anybody.
Are you talking about anyone on your website? Do you have their Informed Consent – Disqualified
8. Photos of anybody.
When mentioning anybody, like the SEO you are basing your contest around, or the SEO you want people to vote for, or the SEO you admire etc. are you using a photo of them? – Did you get their informed consent to use that photo with a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, transferable licence (with right to sub-licence) to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivative works of, display, and perform any content they provided. – – Disqualified
9. Photos of anybody.
When mentioning anybody, like the SEO you are basing your contest around, or the SEO you want people to vote for, or the SEO you admire etc. are you using a photo of them? – Did you get the Photographers informed consent to use that photo with a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, transferable licence (with right to sub-licence) to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivative works of, display, and perform any content they provided. – Disqualified – Remember the Exif data may show not only the photographers name but also the date, time, camera used, etc. when taking that photo – The subject may say; sure, you can use it – but did the photographer?
That’s just 9 reasons why any SEO Hero Competitors could be disqualified, read the rules yourself to find all the other reasons.
What you have to understand is that Wix will be granted use of any element that features on your SEO Hero website;
“By participating in the Contest, you grant Wix and each of its shareholders and licensees (“Authorized Parties”) an irrevocable, perpetual, worldwide non-exclusive, royalty-free license to use, display, edit, modify reproduce, distribute, broadcast, publish, perform and create derivative works of any part of the Participants Materials and otherwise use and exploit them, on their own or of any audiovisual or other production; all via the internet (including any social media platform) on any website (whether currently existing or as shall exist in the future), or any other interactive media, on television, in print and/or any other media currently existing and hereafter developed, without limitation and without payment of any compensation to you or your heirs and successors and without the need for any additional approval or consent from you; for the purposes of
(i) advertising and promoting the Contest and/or any products or services of the Sponsor; and/or
What this effectively means is you are granting Wix a licence to use anything on your website, if you are using unlicensed material and the rights holder claims against Wix it could end up costing you far more than the $50k if you win.
That $50k effectively becomes a piece of cheese for the lawyers out there.
One more thing
Most SEO Hero sites mention the rules and have extracts from them on their pages.
If you do – Disqualified
“The Contest Rules, the Contest, the Contest Page, the Hero Website created by Sponsor and all related web pages, content and code are the property of the Sponsor. The copying or use of any of those materials, associated trademarks or any other intellectual property without the express written consent of its owner is strictly prohibited.”
Basically – if you read the full rules you will find that virtually every SEO Hero website falls foul of them
The Winner is 100% based on the whim of the judge and winning the contest could prove extremely expensive if you are not very careful!
Word of warning – Be careful out there folks, go and read the full rules yourself very carefully
If anyone from Wix Reads This
Please could you clarify if we are allowed to mention Wix, allowed to mention any of the Wix SEO Heroes or Villains, allowed to use the Wix Logo, allowed to use any Wix imagery, allowed to use quotes and extracts from Wix pages, like extracts of rules, snippets of text, etc.
If so, can you please provide expressed written consent that we can.