"Given the sheer size of the investigation that we’ll be undertaking, this is going to take some time, as a lot of ISK and assets have changed hands. While some temporary action has been taken in order to keep a handle on the situation, any outcome of an investigation is still to be determined, and I can’t give any further information regarding the process while it’s ongoing."One of those actions apparently was to tell SOMERblink to stop their promotion. SOMERblink's site was updated with the following:
|As seen on SOMERblink on 18 August 2014|
18. You may not publish private communications from CCP, their agents or representatives or EVE Online volunteers without authorization.I'm pretty sure CCP did not give permission to post that, so Somerset Mahm is subject to some sort of punishment from CCP. While the contents of the email exchange are flying around the forums, I'll take the prudent course and not quote from the emails directly. I'll just characterize the exchange as Somerset was anxious to get his authorization to proceed. He became impatient with the speed with which the legal department was working and she gave her approval via email. Interestingly, that was back in April. The promotion was originally supposed to debut 1 May.
The second hyperlink is for the actual proposal for the promotion. Apparently affiliate promotions are sent to CCP's legal department for approval. Here is how CSM delegate DJ FunkyBacon described the document:
@dirkmacgirk @noizygamer proposal is a poorly worded hack job intended to confuse someone not entirely familiar with how Eve works.
— FunkyBacon (@FunkyBacon) August 19, 2014
The justification for the promotion was very interesting:
"Justification: Blink provides no extra ISK or bonus Blink credit for buying through the link. Instead, we make it easy to sell your PLEX and get your ISK quickly, no matter where you are-- no Jita alt required. This is a service, in keeping with CCP's new guidelines that ETC affiliate link rewards should be service-oriented."
|The description of the proposal given to CCP|
|PLEX sales in Jita, 9-17 August 2014|
In the proposal, Somerset stated he would give the people who purchased PLEX through his referral link the best price. But I don't think people really understood what "best price" was. To add to the confusion, he did not define how he would calculate that best price. To some, the offer of 830 million ISK for a PLEX on Sunday was the best offer. But considering that the most expensive PLEX sold for 794 million ISK in Jita on Sunday, some might consider the additional 35 million ISK "extra".
These are some of the basic facts I found yesterday. I actually intended to wait until Wednesday to write another post on the subject, but the changes on the SOMERblink website were too significant to pass up. Besides, with the new information available, I couldn't sleep until this post was finished. Hopefully, other bloggers and news sites will fill in the blanks with some more detailed analysis throughout the day as more information becomes available out of CCP headquarters in Reykjavik.