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Thread: An anti-bribery policy?

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    An anti-bribery policy?

    Who has one of these and why? I'm sure most of us have privacy policies but I've never seen an anti-bribery policy before. It's on a mainstream affiliate/retail site. I wonder if it's an attempt to prevent offers of cash inducements for recommendations. It just seems a bit strong to put it in those terms. What do you think about it?
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    Marketing Mentor Mikl is a Premium Member
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    I once wrote a magazine article in which I accused several well-known companies of bribery (in a fairly light-handed way). Typically, the companies were giving out things like gift vouchers or theatre tickets - sometimes even holidays - to their customers' employees, in return for purchasing their products on behalf of their employers.

    Some of the companies responded by saying that this was simply a sales promotion; it was not so very different from giving a discount; it was their way of saying "thank you" for the business; and, in short, it was all perfectly legal and normal business practice.

    But the whole point was that the benefits were going to individual employees, not to the customer (that is, the company on whose behalf the purchase was made). In accepting these gifts, the recipients were abusing their position. They were acting in their own interest, rather than in that of their employers. That is the difference between normal business practice and bribery.

    I don't know if I won the argument, but none of the companies involved sued me or the magazine, which proves something.

    By the way, I also made it very clear that I was not writing about small gifts, such as a free lunch or a box of chocolates. In all the case I quoted, the gifts were substantial.

    Mike

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    aka "bryanon"
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikl View Post
    I once wrote a magazine article in which I accused several well-known companies of bribery (in a fairly light-handed way). Typically, the companies were giving out things like gift vouchers or theatre tickets - sometimes even holidays - to their customers' employees, in return for purchasing their products on behalf of their employers.

    Some of the companies responded by saying that this was simply a sales promotion; it was not so very different from giving a discount; it was their way of saying "thank you" for the business; and, in short, it was all perfectly legal and normal business practice.

    But the whole point was that the benefits were going to individual employees, not to the customer (that is, the company on whose behalf the purchase was made). In accepting these gifts, the recipients were abusing their position. They were acting in their own interest, rather than in that of their employers. That is the difference between normal business practice and bribery.

    I don't know if I won the argument, but none of the companies involved sued me or the magazine, which proves something.

    By the way, I also made it very clear that I was not writing about small gifts, such as a free lunch or a box of chocolates. In all the case I quoted, the gifts were substantial.

    Mike
    Isn't that happening nearly everywhere, though?

    A perfect example here is airline miles. Nearly all airlines only award miles to the person flying, not to the person/company paying for the ticket.

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    Nearly all airlines only award miles to the person flying, not to the person/company paying for the ticket.
    True. I wonder why I've never heard of an airline offering discounts to corporate customers, even large ones? In the days when I worked for a multinational, the company negotiated such big discounts with the major car hire firms that the franchisees started giving us crappy cars, but each location bought flights through an agent chosen by the local purchasing department and we got no corporate deals.

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    Top Contributor grynge is a Premium Member
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    It could be legislation in the country the affil site is based?

    After the AWB oil for wheat scandal here in australia, I know the government was looking at introducing anti bribery legislation, which they still haven't done. The Australian Wheat Board claimed what they were doing was legal in Iraq, and most everyone else claimed it was illegal. My thoughts are, it was immoral, but probably not illegal and no successful prosecutions have come forth, even the american farmers billion dollar lawsuit was thrown out.

    It is such a hard claim to justify, is it a bribe or an enticement? Is it just good business management? You get, we get, both sides are happy just innocent bystanders may lose out.
    And they thought me broken, that my tongue was coated lead, but I just couldn't make my words make sense to them, if you only listen with your ears ... I can't get in
    Non ducor, duco

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    I'm not sure why it's there at all. I've posted more about it in the Premium Lounge so you can have a look if you want. I didn't want to discuss the details on a public forum.
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  9. #7
    Marketing Mentor Mikl is a Premium Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bryan View Post
    A perfect example here is airline miles. Nearly all airlines only award miles to the person flying, not to the person/company paying for the ticket.
    Yes, that is a good example. It's often the case that an employee will be tempted to choose a flight based on its frequent-flier programme, rather than whether it is good value for the employer.

    A few large companies have started to crack down on it. But in practice it must be difficult to stop.

    If I was a boss at such a company, I think I would stipulate that the employee is free to collect FF miles, but, if they choose the flight or airline themselves, they must be prepared to show that it was the most cost-effective choice for the company (taking both cost and time into account). Then again, that might be just a bit too bureaucratic.

    Mike

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    aka "bryanon"
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikl View Post
    If I was a boss at such a company, I think I would stipulate that the employee is free to collect FF miles, but, if they choose the flight or airline themselves, they must be prepared to show that it was the most cost-effective choice for the company (taking both cost and time into account). Then again, that might be just a bit too bureaucratic.
    Or like many companies, you could make a deal with a travel agency and establish a rule that all flights must be booked through this one travel agency, and bookings are done solely based on time preferences and cost, rather than airline preferences.

    And then the travel agency would choose which airlines to book the flights with (based on the kickback they're getting from those airlines) :-)

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    And then the travel agency would choose which airlines to book the flights with (based on the kickback they're getting from those airlines) :-)
    Might get away with it in a small company, but in a big one there is a significant chance that at least one employee will get his own favourite travel agent to give him a quote that demonstrates that his employer's chosen agent is either incompetent or dishonest. Some people do that kind of thing all the time.

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