back to article Microsoft search bribery machine refuses to pay up

Microsoft's search bribery machine is on the fritz. Again. Last May, in a desperate bid to catch the uncatchable Google, Redmond began bribing people to use its third-rate search engine, Live Search. If you use Live Search ads to find and buy certain stuff, Microsoft will return a portion of the purchase price. They call it …


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  1. matthew newman

    Can I google it?

    So why not just add to your google queries to get the ad impression. Google to live to cash back some day.

  2. Anonymous Coward

    eBay cashback? Not recently...

    Haven't seen eBay on the list of cashback stores in months. If someone's found a way to get cashback working again with eBay let me know. That's the only reason I can think of to use Live Search.

  3. Henry Wertz Gold badge

    These two are related

    " In some cases, users also complained that Redmond wasn't returning as much as it said it would.

    In the early days of the bribery machine, eBayers noticed they could game the system by selling $630 in cash for $714. But Microsoft says it has ways of stopping this."

    These are directly related. Microsoft's "ways of stopping this" amount to reducing the % payback on high-dollar transactions. Originally they paid back 35%, so the seller gets $84 straight off (714-630). The buyer gets 35% of 714 back, that's like $250 (so the buyer would clear $166 more or less.) Well, the simple way of stopping this was to reduce the paybacks.... they're more like 10% now, it's not so enticing to try this for a $35 apiece or so take. (There's also a clause about not allowing "sham" transactions that I'm sure is meant to cover this as well.)

    But, of course, that leads to people not looking at updated terms and conditions or whatever, and going "Microsoft isn't paying what they said they would."

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Why not...

    ..give up trying to borg the internet and try writing a decent operating system, instad of that virus ridden pile-o-shite Windoze..

  5. BioTube

    I hate to say this

    But the monkeys working on Live Search ain't the same monkeys pounding away at the keyboard and writing Hamlet, er Windows.

  6. Crossbow


    "with the remainder of impacted customers"

    The customers are wedged together at a fracture? The customers are wedged in a passage?

    Live search may be broken, and be reminiscent of a failed bowel movement, but it is still not a good choice of words :P

  7. Anonymous Coward

    MS fuck something up yet again - Non Shocker

    *sigh* Is there anything that Microsoft can do properly without fucking it up a few times first (using illegal business tactics and creating cringeworthy TV adverts aside) ...?!?

    Tux - because he doesn't have any dodgy skeletons in the closet.

  8. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Oh no !

    Microsoft, Ebay and PayPal in the same room. RUN FOR YOUR LIVES !

    Talk about a congregation of criminals.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    I got mine.

    On the flip side, I got my $2200 back from them, and my friend got his. I admit, I was surprised, it reminded me a bit of the 'paid to surf' toolbars of the dot com era.

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