Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 99 total)
  • That ESTA article
  • vinnyeh
    Full Member

    on the front page should be pulled.

    I understand times a tough, and support affiliate links and so on, but not keen on seeing you support companies like this.
    Poor show.

    IHN
    Full Member

    Great minds, etc

    robvalentine
    Full Member

    especially as you can’t actually go there at the moment to ride…

    citizenlee
    Free Member

    Are they one of those scammy sites that charge for something you can apply for much cheaper yourself? My eldest fell for one of those a few years ago.

    Rubber_Buccaneer
    Full Member

    Agreed and agree with IHN’s comment on the article.  It’s pretty much the type of spam the mods would remove from the forum

    IHN
    Full Member

    Indeed they are

    kelvin
    Full Member

    Not as bad as the ones that Google let sit at the top of their search listings (paid for) that use things like “ESTA”, “gov” and “official” in their shifting (and shifty) domain names.

    nealglover
    Free Member

    I understand times a tough, and support affiliate links and so on, but not keen on seeing you support companies like this.

    To be fair, I see it more as this company supporting STW.

    The first comment after the “article” will stop anyone from using the stupid service they offer, but STW will have been paid for the company to advertise either way.

    timmys
    Full Member

    Will be interested in the STW response, I had hoped their ethics were above this to be honest.

    mogrim
    Full Member

    Says “Sponsored Feature” right at the top, not sure what the problem is? (Unless that wasn’t there when they first published it…)

    Ah, now read the comments. Yeah, definitely a bit of a scam then.

    IHN
    Full Member

    [deleted] crossed posts

    savoyad
    Free Member

    It’s a scam. Pretty poor promoting it like that, sponsored or not. Big error of judgment.

    mogrim
    Full Member

    [deleted] crossed posts

    My fault, I replied then edited when I saw the comments 🙂

    Mark
    Full Member

    It’s an ad.

    But this one is an ad you can comment on directly.

    Technically they are offering a service for something you can do directly yourself. but some people like to have their hand held. It’s not a scam in so far as they deliver. It’s also a one stop shop for all visa, ETA and ESTA applications. Some people like to have them all in one place.

    Sponsored/Advertorial is an increasingly important means for us to stay in business.

    I’d love nothing more that to never run an ad on the site ever again but until we have a lot more revenue coming from the people who use the site that is still a way off. It’s edging ever closer though. We are at 45:55 ratio in terms of reader:ad revenues.

    stingmered
    Full Member

    It’s not a scam, but the ways these services are marketed is very questionable. And yes, it clearly says ‘Advertorial’ at the top, but I’m assuming STW has some sort of code/guidelines as to what it will/won’t accept as ad revenue, and I can’t see how this would pass your usually impeccable judgement.

    It doesn’t pass any sort of giggle test unless you get laughs from causing the less wary to needlessly fork out money for a service they do not need.

    IHN
    Full Member

    It’s not a scam in so far as they deliver.

    This particular company may not be a scam, but it’s a very scammy/murky area. I fully understand that you need to take ads and sponsored content, you’re running a business, but for the sponsored content especially you have to decide if you’re allowing something to be sponsored by someone you’re comfortable to promote, as you are giving it a certain seal of approval. On this one, I think you’ve (admittedly, only just) made the wrong decision to accept it.

    boombang
    Free Member

    If the article said ESTA also available here (with link to real site) and outlined the virtues of the e-visa service I wouldn’t feel strongly, but as written designed to sell an unnecessary service to those who don’t know any better – that is unethical in my book.

    savoyad
    Free Member

    Of course it’s a scam @stingmered. Here’s a US government warning against sites like that – they use the title “ESTA Fraud Warning”: https://at.usembassy.gov/wp-content/uploads/sites/39/2017/03/ESTA_fraud_warning_English.pdf

    What service do you think that site is offering, other than conning people out of an overpayment?

    big_scot_nanny
    Full Member

    @Mark – understand your point re revenue, but that article is very manipulative. It is written such that the links take you to the ESTA site – they don’t

    Dodgy AF, get rid pronto

    MoreCashThanDash
    Full Member

    Disappointed that the business has taken the money for this, but I’m not going to judge the tough decisions businesses are making to get revenue at the moment.

    Some can be quick enough to moan about the perceived value of the mag or site subscription at times, well, this is the alternative.

    scotroutes
    Full Member

    Next question; how much would the Daily Mail need to pay for an Advertorial on STW?

    Mark
    Full Member

    We have just had a team chat in response to your comments. And as a response we’ve added a big box to the article that contains text from the website of e-visa.co.uk…

    e-Visa.co.uk is a professional visa bureau and supports travellers in acquiring a visa for the USA. However, e-Visa.co.uk is in no way part of the US government. It is also possible to directly apply for an ESTA at the US Customs and Border Protection website ($14 per person, via esta.cbp.dhs.gov). In that case, you will be unable to use our support centre, which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to resolve urgent issues and answer your questions. We also check applications for common mistakes before submitting them. We do this within 72 hours at the latest, but usually within ten minutes after receiving your payment. If we suspect errors or any incompleteness, we will contact you immediately to ensure that your application can still be processed quickly and correctly. Our services have already saved many travellers from major problems during their travels. Should an application be rejected despite our support and verification, we will refund the entire purchase cost (unless an application for an ESTA USA has been rejected for the same traveller before). Read more about our services.

    If they come back to us and ask us to remove that we will pull the whole ad and refund them.

    vinnyeh
    Full Member

    Some can be quick enough to moan about the perceived value of the mag or site subscription at times, well, this is the alternative.

    yeah, and I’m part of the problem, I guess- been buying since issue 2, but cancelled my last renewal, wasn’t in love with a lot of the changes across content and platforms, but still use the site when I feel like it. Maybe need a rethink.

    Edukator
    Free Member

    Thumbs up, Mark.

    Whilst there’s mud flying around I’ve raise the issue of promoting beer on this site before. I reckon this parargraph from your Singletrack Flowy Ale Trail beer:

    This is the first Singletrack beer lovingly crafted by Stu at Kirkby Lonsdale Brewery. Stu knows a lot about beer, and is also rather handy on a bike. He completed the Silk Road Mountain Race covering 8,000km and 26,000m of climbing in Kyrgyzstan. Think about that for a moment: 70,000 feet of climbing, and he drinks beer. Perhaps its time to take another look at how you train?

    breaks the adertising standards code in the same way as this ad:

    https://www.asa.org.uk/rulings/rr-whisky-ltd-a21-1092957-rr-whisky-ltd.html

    I know it’s tongue in cheek, I’m neither offended nor really bothered, certainly not bothered enough to do any more than politely raise it here, but promoting beer and biking is a bad idea. I was really disappointed when Steve Peat did that descent with beer cans on his helmet.

    Sel the beer by all means, but with more appropriate text.

    dangeourbrain
    Full Member

    as a response we’ve added a big box to the article

    Certainly seems a fair approach to me, as you say, some people drop prefer these sorts of “services”, making clear its a costed service along side providing a link and price for the diy option is a reasonable ballance imo, on what is clearly a promotional piece.

    It’s a shame it needed a prod but, personally, I think it’s the right response.

    airvent
    Free Member

    promoting beer and biking is a bad idea

    Why? I wholeheartedly disagree.

    IHN
    Full Member

    Fair play Mark, as one of the original complainers I think that’s a reasonable response.

    13thfloormonk
    Full Member

    Having applied for (and received) a few Visas myself, if I’d known about or could have afforded a service to take ANY of the hassle out of it for me, then I would have gladly considered it.

    I’ve not even read the article, but I’m not sure I even feel they or STW are obliged to promote a link to the DIY Visa portal, so long as article isn’t trying to suggest there is no other way to get one (e.g. any inference that you HAD to use their services would be super dodgy).

    They offer a service, at a price, if it appeals to you, what’s the problem? Frankly if you want a VISA and were not already aware that there was a DIY route then perhaps you are the sort of person who needs a bit of hand holding anyway (not meant to sound derogatory, just saying there is a legitimate market for hand-holding…)

    kelvin
    Full Member

    Why? I wholeheartedly disagree.

    I’m with you 100% on this one airvent!

    Mmmmm…. recovery beer.

    [ no claims were made in this post as to the effectiveness or otherwise of beer to actually aid recovery ]

    airvent
    Free Member

    Mmmmm…. recovery beer.

    [ no claims were made in this post as to the effectiveness or otherwise of beer to actually aid recovery ]

    Between a bottle of Wainwright and a SIS recovery powder I know what I’d take…

    kelvin
    Full Member

    The truth is that I down a pint of water with an SIS electrolyte tab in it after every ride… otherwise I get cramp later. It actually works. Beer tastes a hell of a lot better though.

    soundninjauk
    Full Member

    Recovery beer is best beer.

    nbt
    Full Member

    Can’t beat a cold isotonic sports lager after a hot ride

    tomhoward
    Full Member

    breaks the adertising standards code in the same way as this ad

    No it doesn’t. Saying that a man rides bikes and drinks beer (not indicating doing it at the same time) is not the same as ‘you should drink whiskey whilst climbing a mountain’

    grum
    Free Member

    Nothing refreshes like an ice-cold glass of milk.

    bruneep
    Full Member

    is not the same as ‘you should drink whiskey whilst climbing a mountain’


    what about whisky is that ok?

    deadlydarcy
    Free Member

    Nothing refreshes like an ice-cold glass of milk.

    So that’s how you never ended up playing for Accrington Stanley.

    Edukator
    Free Member

    Consumption of alcohol must not be linked to increased popularity, sexual success, confidence, sporting achievements or mental performance. Anything which portrays drinking alcohol as a challenge or as having therapeutic qualities is banned, as is anything that promotes binge drinking or suggests that alcohol can solve your problems.

    AdamT
    Full Member

    So it’s an ad, but still visible to subscribers?

    kelvin
    Full Member

    must not be linked to increased popularity, sexual success, confidence, sporting achievements or mental performance

    Well, it can be safely linked to the kind if riding I do then, that’s for sure.

    😹

    [ beer is tasty, it won’t increase anything other than your belly ]

Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 99 total)

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