Background: I had entered an online contest from a well-known Canadian video card company last year (or quite a while back). Well apparently a few weeks ago I received an e-mail stating I had won something and needed to sign a affidavit of eligibility. It did not state what I won though. Basically the affidavit signs away any liability to them and lets them publish my name or whatever in connection as a winner of the contest.
Well this 3 page legalese filled document wanted to know my Soc Sec #, a witness signature, and be stamped by a Notary Public, in addition to my personal info. It also makes you requires a response within 2 weeks to be eligible.
I responded with an e-mail of why the heck they needed my SSN. "11" days later I get a response that a SSN was needed to clear customs! Of course, now I only had 4 days to respond and still be eligible.
Important: none of this info was stated as required in the original contest rules, which I looked up. The original rules only said you had to sign up with a vaild e-mail address and "sign" an affidavit of eligibility.
So I signed the affidavit and left everything like the SSN (wrote "NUNYA"), notary public blank, witness, etc. I also states, according to the original published contest rules, I only had to sign an affidavit (which I did) and send it back by e-mail within the 15 days (again which I did).
To sum up matters: I told them that their excuse (customs) for requiring a SSN was BS (especially for what could be a $2 t-shirt) and if they wanted public notary sigs and stuff, it would be at their expense. Also if they persisted in not following their own published contest requirements, I would ensure that alot of their customers heard about it. I probably wouldn't have done crap (it's not like it costed me anything), but I was mad at the time.
I received this today:
This is to inform you that your release form will be accepted and your prize will be shipped.
VICTORY!!! I probably got a stupid t-shirt (hopefully got a Video card), but all they got was my name and address.