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Bing Cashback Can Cost You Money

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the wotta-boggin dept.

Businesses 333

paltemalte writes "Microsoft and various retailers have teamed up to bring you cashback on purchases made via Bing's price comparison feature. There is a little snag, though — it seems that when you have a Bing cookie living in your browser, some retailers will quote you a higher price than if you come with no Bing cookie in your system."

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333 comments

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Hehe (5, Funny)

cptdondo (59460) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210172)

Deal with MS, get screwed.

Nothing to see here, move on....

Re:Hehe (1)

spyder-implee (864295) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210390)

EXACTLY! Why would anyone use Bing anyway? - I'm asking genuinely, is it useful?

Re:Hehe (4, Insightful)

pegdhcp (1158827) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210476)

It is slightly more userfriendlier(ish) than Google. And more importantly, MS pushing it as the default search engine in recent incarnations of IE, thus (l)users might start to think Bing=search engine, like they do in IE=Internet equation (Postel is turning in his grave). But the answer to your main question is "No it is not useful". Also I might add that, I would prefer Google to have my search patterns stored. At least they (seemingly) are not going to need to sell their shares to MS, with the current financial position.

It is? (3, Interesting)

Weaselmancer (533834) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210634)

It is slightly more userfriendlier(ish) than Google.

How is that even possible? Google is a plain white web page with a text box and a logo.

Re:It is? (1, Flamebait)

TrancePhreak (576593) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210658)

After the search is where it gets better. The results pages on Bing are way better, and have even caused a stir at Google.

Re:It is? (5, Insightful)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210710)

After the search is where it gets better. The results pages on Bing are way better, and have even caused a stir at Google.

In what way? During the brief period I tried Bing, I was thoroughly unimpressed.

Giving me relevant results is the ONLY thing I care about with a search engine. Bing didn't do as well as Google - end of story. If it had done as well as Google, I still wouldn't have cared - it'd have to provide better results for me to even care.

Re:It is? (1)

Gerzel (240421) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210690)

Uhm plain is not always User friendly.

Re:Hehe (1)

craagz (965952) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210534)

The other day, i opened Bing to show to a colleague who did not know what Bing was... and kept pressing next for the background image that comes with it. Forgot what I wanted to search for. [:D]

Re:Hehe (0, Troll)

happylight (600739) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210678)

My friend bought about 1500 dollars worth of sneakers, got the cash back from bing, then returned the sneakers. It's free money.

Blame Murdoch. (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210416)

After all, they've got to do something to raise the money needed to pay Murdoch to remove his newspapers from Google.

Otherwise, they'll have to start laying off Microsoft emp ... oh, wait a minute ... incoming chair ... BING!

(I hat it when that happens)

Re:Hehe (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210448)

Of course, it's probably Google paying those sites to charge more...

Re:Hehe (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210518)

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AcaiCleanse (0, Troll)

larryhaney (1627331) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210684)

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Transcribed PDF from Microsoft Legal (0, Offtopic)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210180)

Looks like Microsoft already tried to silence him. Here's a partial transcript of the letter sent to him from Microsoft legal after a prior post:

"This firm represents Microsoft blah blah blah you're violating our rights.

Specifically, at this site you are providing information directing users how to misuse the Microsoft Bing Cashback program through unauthorized technical means. Further, on this website you admit that you have personally misused the Cashback program in this regard. Microsoft believes that your actions and the direction that you are providing to others regarding this method of misuse violates various laws relating to computer intrusion, unauthorized access and unauthorized use of information. For example...directing users how to misuse the Cashback program constitutes a knowing and unpermitted access of data in order to wrongfully obtain money and is also unpermitted assistance in providing a means of accessing a computer, system, or network in violation of California Penal Code S502(c)*. This conduct would also violate provisions of the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, Fraud and Related Activity in Connection With Access Devices, and common law principles under state law.

Microsoft views the misuse of its programs...cease and decist...blah blah...."

Looks like they're taking cues from Best Buy [consumerist.com] .

* CALIFORNIA PENAL CODE 502(c) "COMPREHENSIVE COMPUTER DATA ACCESS AND FRAUD ACT"
(1) Knowingly accesses and without permission alters, damages, deletes, destroys, or otherwise uses any data, computer, computer system, or computer network in order to either (A) devise or execute any scheme or artifice to defraud, deceive, or extort, or (B) wrongfully control or obtain money, property, or data.


Hmm, so Microsoft isn't trying to wrongfully control or obtain money? Last I checked, the class-action against Best-Buy was approved. Posting a blog post is tantamount to being an elite hacker who broke into a network and stole trade secrets or money?

That's for the fake transactions exploit. (5, Informative)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210288)

You went to all that trouble to transcribe the PDF without reading the summaries noting that it had to do something else entirely? The takedown letter was for explaining a mechanism to post fake transactions to Bing Cashback [db.org] , which could reasonably be described as telling people how to exploit Bing for money.

This is completely separate from telling people that merchants charge Bing customers more.

Re:That's for the fake transactions exploit. (-1, Flamebait)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210300)

Do you work for Microsoft?

Re:That's for the fake transactions exploit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210362)

He's pointing out that the PDF grandparent posted was not related to the post that prompted this article. Whether he works for Microsoft or not can't change that.

P.S. Put a '$' in place of the 's' in Microsoft and it'll generally help your karma unless you get sane moderators.

Re:That's for the fake transactions exploit. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210394)

p.p.s. make a big deal about "M$", invoke claims of hypocrisy, and then take on the injured tones of a martyr for even more karma.

Re:That's for the fake transactions exploit. (2, Informative)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210472)

Valdrax' criticism of my post was technically correct, no matter how many people dislike Microsoft. He did a google search or was privvy to the information while I just followed the links of the article and didn't bother to find the fourth google entry for "fake transactions to bing cashback".

It shouldn't cause people to disagree with the part of my post that compared Microsoft to Best Buy with respect to price-fixing given the discovery outlined in TFA.

Re:That's for the fake transactions exploit. (-1, Offtopic)

Anachragnome (1008495) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210512)

Meh. Karma is over-rated.

I've had "excellent" karma for a couple years now and I STILL get modded "Troll".

Re:That's for the fake transactions exploit. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210450)

You know, that's the kind of "If you present 'so-called facts' that disagree with my hate-driven bubble worldview, you must be totally in the tank for the other side" attitude that's pretty much destroying our country by grind all sane and rational debate to a halt. People like you always make me ashamed to be on the same side.

it's ethanol-fueled, dumbfuck (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210392)

YHBT, YHL.

So what? (-1, Troll)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210484)

Like I keep up with the "digerati" of the 7-digit UID users. What is there some Perez Hilton site to keep up with / cyber-stalk all the trolls on Slashdot?

(Heck, I can't even readily pick out my friends/foes at a glance anymore since Slashdot revamped things so that the little icons don't show up with JavaScript turned off, so I don't usually pay attention to users at all.)

Tell people. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210492)

This is completely separate from telling people that merchants charge Bing customers more.

You're right.

Your preference: "People, you're being fucked."

Author's preference: "People, you're being fucked. Here's one way to stop that bullshit!"

I'd find the latter method superior in its ability to affect response/action from a greater number of would-be sheep, where as the former merely tells what we know without sharing ideas on what to do.

Errata (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210630)

effect

Re:Transcribed PDF from Microsoft Legal (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210344)

Da always said, "If you lay down with a dog, you'll get up with fleas." With this bing crap, it looks like Google [slashdot.org] will have less to worry about. No Thanks, m$.

"Is this legal" is the wrong question (4, Insightful)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210182)

The right one is "Will people finding out cost more than lawsuits if it isn't legal". If the answer is yes, don't do it, if no then go on ahead.

Re:"Is this legal" is the wrong question (1)

Mechanized Elf (682620) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210198)

The "yes" answer can't be calculated up front, but we can do our best to push toward it.

Re:"Is this legal" is the wrong question (3, Interesting)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210372)

This is microsoft we're talking about, I don't think any non-physical action is even CAPABLE of hurting them at this point. They've just got too much money to harm by anything short of either a standard oil style breakup of the company.

Re:"Is this legal" is the wrong question (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210612)

How about an order forcing them to release the source code to all retail and OEM versions of Windows (including 3.1, '95, '98, ME, XP, 2000, 2003, Vista, 7, MCE), Internet Explorer 3, 4, 5, MS Office 95, 97, XP, 2007, Exchange, IIS, Sharepoint, Visual studio, MS SQL, all components, and middleware with terms no more restrictive than the MIT license?

Re:"Is this legal" is the wrong question (4, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210418)

The right one is "Will people finding out cost more than lawsuits if it isn't legal". If the answer is yes, don't do it, if no then go on ahead.

Since when is simple price discrimination illegal?
It isn't like the website is charging you more based on any legally recognized actionable causes.

Re:"Is this legal" is the wrong question (5, Funny)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210442)

The right one is "Will people finding out cost more than lawsuits if it isn't legal". If the answer is yes, don't do it, if no then go on ahead.

Since when is simple price discrimination illegal?
It isn't like the website is charging you more based on any legally recognized actionable causes.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Because anyone using Bing cashback at this point is obviously mentally handicapped.

Oh-oh ... incoming chair ... BING!

Re:"Is this legal" is the wrong question (1)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210568)

We both know that's a poor excuse that is barely even valid as a technicality because this is on the internet rather than in person.

Re:"Is this legal" is the wrong question (5, Insightful)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210620)

Well, what's illegal is deceptive business practices.

They claim to be offering a cash back if you utilize Bing, which implies a discount, where in fact, they are charging a higher price upfront to Bing users and creating a deceptive impression that the cash back is providing a discount of their normal price.

MS Liability? (2, Interesting)

Mechanized Elf (682620) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210188)

Could MS be liable in a class action lawsuit if it explicitly offered or otherwise encouraged this practice? This story could have teeth.

Re:MS Liability? (0)

zonker (1158) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210304)

I'm curious if the EU will have anything to say about this.

Re:MS Liability? (3, Interesting)

Korbeau (913903) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210508)

Could MS be liable in a class action lawsuit if it explicitly offered or otherwise encouraged this practice? This story could have teeth.

What makes you think that MS encourages a practice that makes prices LESS appealing using its search engine?

I'm more inclined to believe the official statement that it was a mistake (i.e. item went on sale at some point but got updated wrong in the Bing index).

Maybe the shop was truly giving an higher price but that's a totally absurd practice. I would have understood if they had given a price that with the 2% cashback was the same than without (the price appears the same to the costumer and the shop cashes more in), but 50 bucks more?! Also, change a price under 699$ to go above the psychological 700$ level?

Instead of complaining, game the system. (5, Insightful)

ZackSchil (560462) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210192)

Find out what sites go higher and what sites go lower in quoted prices. Fake a cookie to maximize savings or delete it altogether if it gets you a uniformly higher price.

That's the behavior I'd expect from /. . None of this Newsweek / Dateline NBC alarmist "They're using COMPUTER MACHINES to scam us!!!" Get on it, people.

Re:Instead of complaining, game the system. (3, Informative)

Mechanized Elf (682620) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210228)

Taking the time to "game the system" is also a cost. What I expect from /. is astute agitation and bad PR for large players who try to game us.

Re:Instead of complaining, game the system. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210532)

If you can't stomach possibly paying a few dollars more for something and you don't have time to play game, don't use Bing. If enough people think like you, Microsoft will get the message.

Re:Instead of complaining, game the system. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210240)

Yeah, well except for the fact that it's probably illegal to do what they are doing.

So it's OK to allow criminals to do whatever they want because this loose situations allows you the possibility of maybe scamming one of them instead of you getting scammed?

Re:Instead of complaining, game the system. (2, Insightful)

NoYob (1630681) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210354)

Find out what sites go higher and what sites go lower in quoted prices. Fake a cookie to maximize savings or delete it altogether if it gets you a uniformly higher price.

That's the behavior I'd expect from /. . None of this Newsweek / Dateline NBC alarmist "They're using COMPUTER MACHINES to scam us!!!" Get on it, people.

Bing cashback developer goes into boss' office tomorrow:

You know boss, I've been doing this analysis of our system, and I've figured out a way to game the system.

Boss: "Good work coder Dude! For that, you won't get axed this month!"

I would think that MS developers may occasionally read this site.

Re:Instead of complaining, game the system. (1, Insightful)

nacturation (646836) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210528)

Not just that but the site is unnecessarily fearmongering:

The problem doesn’t end there. Using Bing has tainted my web browser. Butterfly Photo set a three month cookie on my computer to indicate that I came from Bing. Any product I look at for the next three months may show a different price than I’d get by going there directly. Just clicking a Bing link means three months of potentially negative cashback, without me ever realizing it. I’m actually afraid to use their service even just to write this, because it may cost me money in the future.

(Emphasis mine.) It's as if he's saying his computer is totally tainted now. Why doesn't he just follow his own advice from step 4?

Step 4: Open a different web browser or clear your cookies from butterflyphoto.com in your current one. Go directly to their site and check the price. $699!

There! He knows that clearing his cookies solves the problem. Why all this bullshit about being tainted for three months and being afraid to use their service to write a bloody blog post? Does he think the "oh noes teh bing cookeez" are going to trash his blog and kill his hamster too?

Re:Instead of complaining, game the system. (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210626)

Actually.. there's good reason for the alarmism... it will discourage other people from using Bing, when they learn things are made more expensive for them.

Leaving fewer people to search for deals, once the word spreads... and perhaps better, more gamable deals for us /. users who have the extra time to do all the gaming, and know how to delete cookies and come from multiple IPs :)

Disclaimer: TFA author works for a bing competitor (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210206)

I read the article; the author works for Bountii which also directs users to places to shop for things. What the article describes is one retailer specifically inflating prices of things when a user comes from Bing. That same retailer could just as easily do the same for links from the author's own site, Bountii. They even go as far to state "At Bountii, we do our best to make sure we always show the lowest available price at a store." It just seems a bit disingenuous to me I guess.

So 'ButterflyPhoto.com' is slime; thanks, got it.

Credit Cards? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210210)

Sounds like the hidden credit card tax. Everything you buy is a few cents extra to cover credit card costs. Then you get "rewards" for using your card. Meanwhile everyone else gets 'gypped' 2 cents. Yes, it is different, but still similar.

Re:Credit Cards? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210334)

gypped? Ah, you couldn't close escrow and just use the term "jewed" ?

Re:Credit Cards? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210728)

Not really. The merchant sets his price based on the fees he pays for the cc charge. Your rewards are dependent on the card issuer, independent of the fees the merchant is charged. Different merchants get charged different fees based on volume , number of chargebacks and the way they collected your information. Your rewards are most likely paid out of the interest the issuing bank charges yourself and other cardholders.

Reminds me of Amazon (4, Informative)

gapagos (1264716) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210218)

I remember a long time ago about a story where Amazon charged more to its returning customers than new ones through a cookie like that.
Anyone has remembers this as well?

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (1)

wygit (696674) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210322)

Yes, I do remember that. I had the coolies in Firefox, and I'd check the same item in Safari with no cookies, and get a lower price in Safari.

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (4, Funny)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210436)

I'm sorry, but your typo [wikipedia.org] made me laugh.

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (1)

EsJay (879629) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210330)

Yes, I can has remembers that. I never logged onto Amazon from my work machine, and could see different prices between work and home. This was almost 10 years ago, I have not tested recently.

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (1)

breeze95 (880714) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210338)

I remember a long time ago about a story where Amazon charged more to its returning customers than new ones through a cookie like that.
Anyone has remembers this as well?

I never heard of that. Besides, why would Amazon need to rely on a browser's cookie to identify returning customers when Amazon requires customers to have an account with them and be logged in before purchases are made?

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (2, Informative)

EsJay (879629) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210398)

why would Amazon need to rely on a browser's cookie to identify returning customers? In order to display the custom pricing (or whatever else they want) before you log on.

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (1)

gapagos (1264716) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210400)

It was several years ago, maybe before you needed to log-in to make a purchase.

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (3, Informative)

Raistlin77 (754120) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210402)

I never heard of that. Besides, why would Amazon need to rely on a browser's cookie to identify returning customers when Amazon requires customers to have an account with them and be logged in before purchases are made?

Because if simply logging in or out changed the prices, you'd know right away something was amiss. If it was cookie-driven, then it would not rely on you having to login and Amazon could always show you the inflated price regardless of your login status.

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (3, Informative)

MushMouth (5650) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210440)

That wasn't exactly it, Amazon was testing different price points for items and set a cookie to make sure once your price point was set it remained. However some people noticed if they cleared their cookies they would get a lower price sometimes. The people who got a higher price didn't really have much to say about it. In the end everyone got charged the lowest price even if they thought they were paying the higher price.

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210668)

Yes, and they still do it sometimes.

Re:Reminds me of Amazon (1)

SKPhoton (683703) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210730)

I believe it was the other way around. Amazon would slowly lower the price on items they saw you monitoring over time, hoping to entice you to finally buy it. One guy was complaining because he lost his cookies and thus his discount on the product he was wanting.

Come on, it's obviously the store that's shady (5, Insightful)

Edgewize (262271) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210220)

This has nothing to do with Microsoft. From the article: Butterfly Photo set a three month cookie on my computer to indicate that I came from Bing.

So, a disreputable web site is setting a cookie when you click on a sales link. How is this Microsoft's fault again? What does this have to do with Bing?

A/V and photography stores are notorious for ripping off customers, both in-store and on-line. Surprise surprise, you can find these disreputable sites using search engines. Trying to blame this on Bing is like trying to blame your phone book for recommending a sketchy car mechanic.

Re:Come on, it's obviously the store that's shady (-1, Redundant)

TheSHAD0W (258774) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210252)

You are correct, sir, but I'm sure Microsoft is feeling angry at the retailer and embarrassed their attempt to find their customers the best price is going awry. Their attempt to suppress the article is even more amusing.

Re:Come on, it's obviously the store that's shady (3, Informative)

Edgewize (262271) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210298)

They aren't even suppressing this article! They suppressed a previous article where he meticulously detailed a flaw in the cashback system without giving MS a chance to fix it.

This whole thing is ridiculous and nothing but anti-Microsoft / anti-Bing bashing.

Re:Come on, it's obviously the store that's shady (1)

ysth (1368415) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210488)

Without giving MS a chance to fix it? If they had someone with half a brain making the decisions, they would never have used a tracking pixel like that - it's just plain broken by design.

And I bet the MS engineers who worked on this said so and were ignored.

Welcome to Slashdot (1)

Zixaphir (845917) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210782)

You must be new here!

The first thing that came to mind... (5, Interesting)

rcolbert (1631881) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210222)

...are the notorious 'employee discount codes' that vendors such as Dell and other have employed. A few years back I was looking to buy a new LCD and had a Dell in mind when I remembered my company had a discount code. So I dug it up, and used the instructions provided to logon to the 'discount' site (the mechanics of doing so may be different today.) To my surprise, I found that the 'discounted' price of the monitor was several hundred dollars more than just the plain ol' Dell site. WTF? How do you advertise a code and process as a discount, and then the merchandise therein is actually priced higher than your regular price from your main site? I'm glad I double checked before hitting the purchase button.

Re:The first thing that came to mind... (1)

bongey (974911) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210260)

Dell has recently fixed this , but it still isn't perfect. The will match the price now.
Funny thing is sometimes applying coupon code will cause the price to go up, because this system does combine discounts properly.

Re:The first thing that came to mind... (5, Insightful)

jesseck (942036) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210292)

I worked for a national healthcare system which offered a Dell employee purchase program. My wife wanted a pink laptop, and I quickly found out I could get a better deal on a regular "sale" from Dell than the "12% employee purchase program discount" could ever give me. They're scams, which attempt to con people into thinking they are getting a deal.

Re:The first thing that came to mind... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210522)

How do you advertise a code and process as a discount, and then the merchandise therein is actually priced higher than your regular price from your main site?

You've never heard of negative numbers? :)

No surprise ... price variations based on cookies (4, Interesting)

gordguide (307383) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210230)

No surprise ... price variations based on cookies ... is old news. I remember reading about how cookies resident on the user's machine can cause different quoted prices to appear years ago ... probably five years ago at least. I was able to test it at the time using two browsers with different cookie loads. It's definitely happening. Come to think of it, I'm pretty sure it was a /. story years ago that first mentioned it.

Re:No surprise ... price variations based on cooki (0, Redundant)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210266)

No surprise ... price variations based on cookies ... is old news.

A new patent... Anyone? Anyone? Amazon? Microsoft? Bueller?

Re:No surprise ... price variations based on cooki (1)

AK Marc (707885) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210582)

Next up:

When you go to Dell and click through as a home user vs a small business, the prices are different for the same machine!

Re:No surprise ... price variations based on cooki (2, Interesting)

armyofone (594988) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210680)

"When you go to Dell and click through as a home user vs a small business, the prices are different for the same machine!"

Yeah, and my residential phone line costs $25.00/month while my business line costs $120.00/month. There is no discernible difference in service level between the two.

WTF Verizon?

Doesn't work for me (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210238)

Bing shows higher price for butterflyphoto.com on their site, but when bing redirects, butterflyphoto is showing the lower price.

Re:Doesn't work for me (4, Insightful)

silencrasdf (531344) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210328)

Same here, I get the lower price with or without cookies. Seeing as the article was written by a Bing competitor it's a way for them to get exposure.

* Step 1: Write article saying M$ is evil
* Step 2: Submit story to /.
* Step 3: Profit!

Doesn't matter if it's true or not

soo... (5, Funny)

mnemonic_ (164550) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210270)

Did anyone else notice the story submitter's alias links to a sex toy shopping site?

Re:soo... (2, Funny)

lul_wat (1623489) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210358)

I've just placed my order! And with using Bing I got heaps of cash back!

Re:soo... (2, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210432)

Did anyone else notice the story submitter's alias links to a sex toy shopping site?

If that's what makes him happy.
Maybe he doesn't know that all subby links are tagged rel="nofollow"

Re:soo... (4, Funny)

Anachragnome (1008495) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210478)

Nice catch. Most interesting.

You deserve a cookie.

Name change required, and all will be fine (3, Funny)

syousef (465911) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210280)

My top suggestions are:

Badda-BING

and

Kerr-Ching

Re:Name change required, and all will be fine (1)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210412)

I always think "Chandler Bing". He was a loser, too.

Re:Name change required, and all will be fine (1)

bertoelcon (1557907) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210510)

What about "Chanandlar Bong"?

Is Microsoft Inflating Bing's Numbers? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210310)

I just had occasion to visit a Microsoft developer's website earlier today. Very rare event, believe me.

After browsing, I always clear out my cookies.

I went nowhere near the Bing "decision engine." But lo and behold, there was a cookie for "bing.com" in my cookie cache before I cleared it.

So, is Microsoft inflating Bing's numbers? Visit any Microsoft site, and you get a Bing cookie counted as a search on Bing? What gives?

Re:Is Microsoft Inflating Bing's Numbers? (4, Interesting)

Mia'cova (691309) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210424)

MSDN's search is powered by bing. So... no surprise?

Re:Is Microsoft Inflating Bing's Numbers? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210536)

Original poster here.

Here's the thing - I didn't use the search function on MSDN.

I knew the exact site I was going to, and did zero search.

So now what is the explanation?

Re:Is Microsoft Inflating Bing's Numbers? (2, Interesting)

TrancePhreak (576593) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210686)

Just because you didn't do a search doesn't mean search was unavailable on the site you were on.

Re:Is Microsoft Inflating Bing's Numbers? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210702)

Why set the cookie?

Re:Is Microsoft Inflating Bing's Numbers? (1)

linumax (910946) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210428)

So, is Microsoft inflating Bing's numbers? [We report, You Decide]

I wonder how you reached that conclusion. The ranking websites which announce results periodically, do not use cookies AFAIK.

I went nowhere near the Bing "decision engine." But lo and behold, there was a cookie for "bing.com" in my cookie cache before I cleared it.

Could it be Microsoft uses Bing embedded as frame or whatever inside Microsoft owned websites for search functions?

Re:Is Microsoft Inflating Bing's Numbers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210636)

But I didn't do a search.

That's why I use "Private Browsing" from work (1)

EsJay (879629) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210340)

No, seriously, boss. I was, ummmm, ummmm, simply using the Bing search engine. Seriously. Really. Please believe me!

Taxes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210360)

Could one price be with Tax seem as Bing/Butterfly Photo has placed a cookie on your system identifying possibly your location, and the other price be the price before any taxes are added?

I think I speak for us all when I say... (0, Redundant)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210406)

...F Microsoft.

Re:I think I speak for us all when I say... (0, Offtopic)

recoiledsnake (879048) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210514)

I think you speak for all the modpoint-milking karma whores...

So basically it's that old "I'm taking 10% off"? (2, Insightful)

NotSoHeavyD3 (1400425) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210408)

You know, where a retailer jacks up the price a bit and then claims that he's taking off say 10% because he likes you or some nonsense. The last time I had that happen was fairly recently with a cell phone carrier. (Which shall remain nameless.) This sounds like the same deal. I went on their web site and looked up how much a battery for my phone was and it listed a price. When I went to the local store they at first quoted a higher price and then said how they were giving me some money off. Surprise surprise it turned out to be the amount quoted on the web page.

Re:So basically it's that old "I'm taking 10% off" (1)

rrohbeck (944847) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210720)

I'm pretty sure this will remain SOP as long as people are dazzled by "SALE!!! Umpteen percent off!!1!"
That is, forever.

isn't this a problem with the retailers websites? (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210498)

sounds like a retailer screw up

looks more like a fail to me (1)

digmediaguy (1002918) | more than 4 years ago | (#30210642)

While certainly not a good thing for MS, it doesn't look to me like something they're doing to intentionally screw people over. At least if anyone's trying to screw anyone over, it's not MS - maybe the camera store, as another poster pointed out, which I would agree with, based on my own past experience in such establishments. That said, I don't want to specifically implicate anyone of wrongdoing without having complete evidence of such, so for all anyone really knows it could have just been one big unfortunate f---up.

What this does look like is some team within MS that handles some aspect of Bing and/or Bing cashback might not have thought through this whole scenario enough. It looks, though, based on the update provided on the site, that somebody at MS has taken notice of the issue. Whether they take action to prevent future incidences of this, and how quickly and thoroughly they do remains to be seen. Hopefully the folks over at Bing can demonstrate some agility here.

Kudos to the finder for bringing this up.

Dummy reply to negate moderation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30210694)

NTSH, MO...

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