Effective Date: September 12, 2013 | Last Updated: October 7, 2015
The Bazaarvoice Authenticity Policy ("Policy") lays out the requirements for a client's content (e.g. ratings, reviews, questions, answers, and stories) to be considered Authentic. "Authentic Content" means content that, to the best of Bazaarvoice's knowledge, meets the requirements of the Policy the purpose of which is to provide content that is transparent and free from any fabrication, modification, or fraudulent activities ("Purpose"). The Policy applies to all content submission formats to Bazaarvoice's platform ("Platform") (including, without limitation: content submitted for subsequent publishing to Bazaarvoice client websites; content remaining in the Bazaarvoice database and not to be published to client websites; Third Party Content (as defined, below); content collected via alternative mediums and subsequently submitted for display by Bazaarvoice such as paper surveys; Interested Content by Interested Submitters (both as further defined, below); content used for advertising purposes; or any other means by which submitted content may be utilized). All clients must comply with the Policy unless they have received written agreement from Bazaarvoice to the contrary; in such case the exempted client will not be eligible for any Bazaarvoice authenticity badges or seals. As further laid out in Section 6, below, failure to comply with the Policy may lead to negative consequences including removal of any authenticity seals or badges and client termination. In order for content to be considered Authentic Content it must meet the following requirements:
Submission of content
1. Pass through risk-based filtering systems to limit fraudulent content and spam from being posted on clients' websites (Bazaarvoice Authenticity Strategy Management System).
a. Bazaarvoice will use reasonable commercial efforts to detect and prevent submission of inauthentic content including the following:
i. Content submitted to a client website by a direct competitor of said client
ii. Attempts by clients to self-promote products or services through content submissions that are not fully disclosed (through a badging system) as having originated from client;
iii. Attempts by clients to degrade or otherwise alter the aggregate rating; and/or sentiment of content submitted on other client websites; and,
iv. Bazaarvoice will obstruct attempts by users seeking to disrupt client site functionality through mass advertising campaigns, trolling, and attempts at automated content submission
2. Otherwise appropriate and relevant negative content will not be hidden, suppressed, edited, or deleted; additionally, spelling and grammatical errors in content will post "as is", and not undergo any editing or correcting process.
a. Bazaarvoice will moderate all content submitted to the Bazaarvoice Platform. Clients will not have the ability to self-moderate their content.
b. Clients are prohibited from rejecting content solely on the basis of star rating or review sentiment.
c. Content containing typos, misspellings, and grammatical errors will be approved, unless the errors materially interfere with other users' ability to read and interpret the content.
d. Neither Bazaarvoice nor client may edit the content in any way.
e. Clients may reject content only if the content violates agreed-upon moderation guidelines between Bazaarvoice and Client.
3. Content originating from any individual or entity with a known financial interest in the product or service upon which the content is submitted, (including, but not limited to: employees of the client; industry experts acting in an official capacity; manufacturers; agents; retailers; and, any individual that requested, encouraged, or otherwise allowed to submit content in exchange for monetary payment or other valuable remuneration (free samples, coupons, discounts, loyalty rewards, contests, sweepstakes etc.) (respectively, "Endorsements" and "Endorsers")) must be disclosed as Endorsements by Endorsers.
a. Clients must notify Bazaarvoice of any and all known Endorsements and Endorsers. Endorsements must contain a full, easily-identifiable disclosure via text within the content or a badge indicating that Endorser's relationship with the client.
b. All Endorsements must comply with all applicable laws, rules, regulations and regulatory guidance.
c. Endorsements must reflect the honest opinions, findings, beliefs, or experience of the Endorser.
d. An Endorsement may not convey any express or implied representation that would be deceptive if made directly by the client.
e. The Endorser must have been a bona fide user of the product, service, etc., for which s/he is submitting an Endorsement.
f. If there is a representation that an Endorser is an industry expert then the Endorser's qualifications must in fact give the Endorser the expertise that s/he is represented as possessing with respect to the Endorsement.
g. All incentivized submissions must be badged or otherwise identified as such. Under no circumstances may incentivized programs base the incentive, either directly or indirectly, on the sentiment of the submitted content. Clients may not display content where the submitter was asked, coached, or coerced into submitting content that has a particular sentiment. This applies to both a disingenuous star rating and/or the text entered into a free text field.
4. Any "legacy" content integrated from a client must contain the original submission date and must be listed in chronological order on the client's website.
a. To the extent that a client integrates legacy content (i.e., content collected prior to their contractual relationship with Bazaarvoice) onto the Platform, client agrees to provide and pass to Bazaarvoice certain data elements for the content, including but not limited to the original submission date of the content, the IP address and other pre-defined fields identified by Bazaarvoice's Authenticity Department.
Third party content
5. Content may be integrated from a third-party site ("Third Party Content") onto the Platform provided the following:
a. The Third Party Content is fully disclosed as having been submitted indirectly into the Bazaarvoice Platform. Disclosure may be done through a badging process.
b. Certain specified required data fields are included as part of the Third Party Content submission process.
c. All Third-Party Content has passed through the Bazaarvoice Authenticity Strategy Management System prior to being displayed by Bazaarvoice.
d. Submitted content that does not comply with the requirements of this section or which fails the authenticity analysis through the Bazaarvoice Authenticity Strategy Management System will not enter the Bazaarvoice Platform.
Violations of the policy
6. Violations of the policy
a. All Bazaarvoice clients and their third parties must comply with this policy.
b. Bazaarvoice may, at its sole discretion, audit content that client has rejected to confirm compliance with the Policy.
c. In the event a client fails to comply with the provisions of the Policy, then the parties will follow the Escalation Process. The Escalation Process is as follows: (1) For initial violations of the Authenticity Policy, Bazaarvoice's Client Success team will notify Client's day-to-day business contact to discuss the particular violation and provide any assistance needed to ensure such violations do not recur; (2) For recurring violations, Bazaarvoice will escalate internally to the EVP of Client Services, who will speak directly with the individual counterpart having a substantially similar function to that of the EVP of Client Services. If the violations persist, then Bazaarvoice may, in its sole discretion, remove badging and/or content from the Bazaarvoice-controlled portions of the affected websites, including any sites the content may syndicate to, or terminate the Agreement and refund any prepaid amounts for Services not yet rendered after the date of termination.
d. Violations of this Policy include, but are not limited to:
i. Suppression or deletion of content solely on the basis of star rating or review sentiment (e.g. rejecting all "one star" ratings);
ii. Not revealing or disclosing the existence of Endorsements; and
iii. Failing to badge incentivized submissions.
Changes to the policy
7. Changes to the policy
a. Bazaarvoice may, in its sole reasonable discretion, update the Policy from time-to-time as it reasonably believes necessary to further the Purpose of the Policy.