When you sign up for the Plug, you agree to our terms of service. I know, I know... no one ever reads the terms of service. I don’t even read the terms of service — and I’ve worked in Trust and Safety and Legal teams for the past 8 years. That is, until I get in trouble.
Today, I want to take a moment to outline some of our terms and policies around refunds that all Plug creators agree to when singing up, and reasons we may have to withhold earnings from creators.
Our refund policy
At the Plug, our terms state that “The Plug may withhold paying out Plugcoins for any reason, including poor user quality, or any inclination that a user is not following our guidelines’. It seems like a lot of legalese to hide behind, when we are really just saying: “If you don’t follow our processes and policies, we might not pay you”. In some extreme cases, we might also close your account without a payout.
And that can seem unfair. If you drove a download, you should be paid for it. Well, this is exactly where things get interesting.
Being a good ambassador
When you sign up to the Plug, you become an ambassador for the apps and campaigns you share with your audience. In other words, it is not about driving downloads at all costs, but rather converting your followers into long-term users for the campaigns.
Can I tell you a secret? Content creators who drive good traffic on the Plug actually make more money per download than those who are looking for short-term cashout. We're even creating a program for all-star Plug creators who generate especially high quality users.
Determining good quality vs. bad
Now, you might be wondering how we know whether someone drives good or bad traffic. For this, we have a few processes in place:
- First, the Plug's Trust and Safety team works 24/7. Our team reviews ad content to make sure that each ad has been approved by our teams and that there is an ad tag.
- Secondly, we work directly with the campaigns and third parties to understand what happens after someone downloads an app from one of our links. We gather and analyze anonymized data, such as whether or not the person opens the app and uses it. This is one of the signals we use to stop incentivized ads or fake downloads.
Bigger impact of breaking our rules
When a creator breaks our rules, they might feel like it was an honest mistake, or a victimless crime. The truth is, that mistake still hurts our relationship with our advertisers. It also affects other creators’s prices and the money you can make.
So, in order to best protect the platform, we refund illegitimate traffic costs to make sure we keep a trusted relationship with our advertisers.
Cases where we refund advertisers
Here are some of the reasons why we would remove Plugcoins from a creator to refund an advertiser:
- Not submitting ads to our team
- We can’t find your traffic
- Direct buys or arbitration
In the following weeks and months, we are going to share more information with you about these processes and the policies we have in place.
You can check our blogs and read our help center for updates. We are also brainstorming new events designed to show you how to make the most out of the Plug while following our guidelines.
We're here to help
By the way, if you have any suggestions on how to get you all to learn about these things, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, because we know all too well that no one likes to read guidelines.