I’ve noticed that several of the Photoshop design blogs/sites are having contests with the prize being a special offer from Fotolia.
Be forewarned! Just because you ‘win’ something, it does not mean you actually get anything. Especially, from Fotolia! Huh? What? Let me explain.
I recently won a contest at one of the Photoshop design sites. The name isn’t important; they fulfilled their end of the deal. The owner of the contest site sent me the coupon code. I had won two weeks’ worth of photos from Fotolia at three downloads-per-day. The winning experience was just fine! However, my experience with Fotolia was a nightmare. I had the coupon code, but, no idea how or where to use it. When I contacted Fotolia via their on-site contact form, I was sent a message saying they were ‘looking in to it’. That was it! Not another word! Not, that is, until two weeks later when I finally e-mailed the owner of the contest site, who took action immediately and got them to give me a link for the darned thing! The prize site blamed me for not reading ‘everything’. I never got anything to read or I would have! It isn’t like I didn’t try!
It really didn’t matter, though, as Fotolia continued to be difficult. When I finally got a link to where I needed to go, the ‘coupon code’ was expired! I had to laugh. The only things missing were Laurel and Hardy! After another week or so of further messages dealing with that, the allotted downloads-per-day were screwed up. I finally demanded they just forget it; delete my account! This request was the quickest response I ever received from Fotolia! They had it deleted by the next morning. It looks like they just blocked my IP number, as well, as I can’t even log onto their main page anymore. LOL I said nothing out of line, either! I never put anything down online or on paper that I might regret later or have come back on me. Anyway, technically, I didn’t win a damn thing! Well, actually, I was able to get two days in out of a two week subscription, for a total of six images! Woo-hoo!
I never contacted the owner of the contest site after that. It wasn’t his fault and he’s busy running his own site, and quite well, too, I might add! It was just so clearly obvious that Fotolia didn’t want to waste any time with me at all! I was a non-paying customer! I’m really curious as to how this experience may have differed if I had been paying. The thing is, Fotolia had to put up this ‘prize’ in the first place for anyone to win it! They should have honored it! They should have made every effort to do so! It’s just bad business otherwise!
What do ya do? You can’t demand your money back! You didn’t pay anything. I chalk it up as a bad experience and vow never to pay a visit to Fotolia’s site again, which, apparently, they took care of by blocking me! That, and I intend to let everyone know how Fotolia treats folks on their site. It’s such a shame! It turned out to be just one big waste of my time! I really looked forward to winning this one! I love images and use them regularly in my photo-manipulations. I had won 20 credits last year from Deposit Photos and it was an absolutely great experience! I guess that experience spoiled me. I thought Fotolia would be good since their name is quite popular. Hah! Not!
Just be prepared if you’ve entered any such contests. Hopefully, mine was a rare exception.