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Author Topic: Why Does Gasbuddy Direct Get to Skirt the Rules? Back to Topics
bytebug

Champion Author
Orange County

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Message Posted: Apr 3, 2013 9:14:46 PM

I've gotten in trouble in the past for posting prices under the name of the convenience store instead of the gasoline brand (ie, 7-Eleven or Circle K). Locally, a local Valero station is now listed with a "Corner Store" logo, and not by the Valero brand. Is there a rule about listing by gasoline brand or not?

[Edited by: bytebug at 4/3/2013 9:17:07 PM EST]
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Don
Moderator
Message Posted: Apr 9, 2013 3:47:31 PM

"Thank you for confirming that GasBuddy sold out, and that the rules are different and special treatment afforded for those who pay you money. it certainly taints the formerly unbiased nature and puts into question just how believable is the information posted here."

"Gasbuddy has been flip-flopping on their "rules" in the past year. You may want to change your logo as well, to "Waffle House"."

GasBuddy is a free service to use by it's members, we do have to generate income in order to keep providing our service to our members.

Obviously GasBuddy has undergone some changes in the last little while, and we will continue to change as we grow as a company, but we really do our best to improve our free service for you all to use.

Obviously we expect backlash when we make changes to our services, but we are not always able to keep everyone happy, we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.
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Brindfan
Champion Author Colorado

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Message Posted: Apr 9, 2013 1:44:43 PM

I must agree with the posts below. People come here to find gas prices, not who has Red Bull on sale! There are many people who are loyal to certain fuel brands, and are looking for the lowest price on "their" brand. "Corner Store" is not a fuel brand, and I'll bet most people don't know Valero as Corner Store. Or that Diamond Shamrock, (here in Colorado), is even Valero.

I remember being corrected to post Bradley Stations as Sinclair. Well, some Bradley stations DO NOT have Sinclair signs on some of their stations. Bradley also has Sav-O-Mat stations that don't even have the Bradley or Sinclair names on their signs, but they all seem to take Sinclair credit and gift cards.

Gasbuddy has been flip-flopping on their "rules" in the past year. You may want to change your logo as well, to "Waffle House".

[Edited by: Brindfan at 4/9/2013 1:45:41 PM EST]
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SUVFan
Champion Author Columbus

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Message Posted: Apr 9, 2013 10:05:53 AM

Bytebug's 100% correct about this.

BP shows up as Duke & Dutchess around here, with a bright red logo instead of BPs green and yellow. Even knowing about it, I've gone looking to figure out who posted a BP in my fsl and, forgetting about the GB Direct deal, not found the listing.

They should be required to use their gas branding, not their convenience store branding. If the site wants to allow the latter, change the site to ColumbusBeerPrices.com!
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bytebug
Champion Author Orange County

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Message Posted: Apr 9, 2013 7:15:43 AM

>> I have been told that no money changes hands for the GBD program

We're not talking about the GB Direct program; the OpenStore program is definitely paid advertising.

>> A GB Direct posting is subject to updating by members

Even when updated, the OpenStore advertising (the special logo placed in lieu of the station's MSL name) is retained.

[Edited by: bytebug at 4/9/2013 7:16:34 AM EST]
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rumbleseat
Champion Author Winnipeg

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Message Posted: Apr 9, 2013 6:34:11 AM

A GB Direct posting is subject to updating by members, just like any other posting. If it is on the site for many hours, then members aren't updating the station, and we would have no price if GB Direct doesn't post.
If I have seen prices at a Safeway, for instance, that GB Direct has a posting for, it doesn't stop me from entering and updating prices.

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jrsva
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Apr 9, 2013 1:53:08 AM

GB Direct is an ill-conceived program which presents an aura of impropriety for GasBuddy. The GBD program, by providing preferential treatment for some stations, destroys the apparent objectivity of GB as an unbiased and generally reliable source of information on gas prices. The most meager intellect should be able to see that a price list (or map) where some entries are given special prominence is to be viewed with skepticism as to its objectivity. My personal reaction is that I would not buy from a GBD station regardless of its price. I have been told that no money changes hands for the GBD program but that does not diminish the aura of impropriety. GB provides free advertising and prominent posting for companies wanting to post their own prices. It’s stupid; let them join as regular members and operate under the same rules as everyone else.

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bytebug
Champion Author Orange County

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Message Posted: Apr 8, 2013 10:44:27 PM

>> I wouldn't say it's more of "skirting the rules" as it is a contractual agreement of how
>> the companies using the service wish to have their locations branded.

Thank you for confirming that GasBuddy sold out, and that the rules are different and special treatment afforded for those who pay you money. it certainly taints the formerly unbiased nature and puts into question just how believable is the information posted here.
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Don
Moderator
Message Posted: Apr 8, 2013 3:56:55 PM

Some convenience store brands are clientele of a sister company called OpenStore, essentially a new media solution for gas stations and convenience store brands.

One of the perks of being an OpenStore client is that the convenience store brands participating in OpenStore have the ability to display their logo with current promotional offers in the GasBuddy price lists, along with hyperlinks to a store's individual company info page.

If you check through the MSL, you should find that the Valero stations are listed accordingly, but will appear under the "OpenStore alias" as it were, of Corner Store.

I wouldn't say it's more of "skirting the rules" as it is a contractual agreement of how the companies using the service wish to have their locations branded.

GB_Direct is the same price feed used by other sources that are not associated with OpenStore.

I hope this explanation helps.

-Don
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Brindfan
Champion Author Colorado

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Message Posted: Apr 6, 2013 5:28:07 PM

"Personally, I think it should always be the main gas brand. Here in Oklahoma, there's a 7-Eleven that sells Conoco gas. Which should be posted?"

Conoco, with 7-Eleven as the Alternate station name.

Here in CO, 7-Elevens sell unbranded, Conoco, Phillips 66, and Shell.
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ziyulu
Champion Author Austin

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Message Posted: Apr 6, 2013 3:03:17 PM

Personally, I think it should always be the main gas brand. Here in Oklahoma, there's a 7-Eleven that sells Conoco gas. Which should be posted?
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bytebug
Champion Author Orange County

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Message Posted: Apr 6, 2013 5:35:10 AM

My main complaint is that Gasbuddy has sold out, allowing a stations advertising to override the rules. I've never seen any signage about "Corner Store", and there is only one Valero station in Orange County so listed.
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rumbleseat
Champion Author Winnipeg

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Message Posted: Apr 6, 2013 12:56:28 AM

Ages back, I was told to list a Flying J as Shell, because Flying J in Canada sells Shell fuel, and the pumps are all marked as such. I replied the major signs are Flying J, the station is listed on the Flying J station locator, and is NOT listed on the Shell station locator. Problem solved, it is in the MSL and prices are posted as, Flying J, and nobody argues about it. The MSL is commented on Shell being the brand sold.
Our 7-Eleven stores with gasoline were listed, after some discussion with the moderators, as Esso, or Petro-Can, whatever brand was on the pumps and the pylon (or 7-Eleven, which some stores had on the pumps).

[Edited by: rumbleseat at 4/6/2013 1:00:42 AM EST]
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Brindfan
Champion Author Colorado

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Message Posted: Apr 5, 2013 11:25:30 PM

The Valero stations here in Colorado are named "Diamond Shamrock". They were bought by Valero at least a decade ago, but all still have "Diamond Shamrock" signs. Yet they posted under the "Valero" name, and as of three days ago, they are posting under the name "Corner Store". For people who may not know that Valero owns Diamond Shamrock, this can be confusing.
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scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

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Message Posted: Apr 4, 2013 6:36:07 AM

We had a similar problem in my area and the moderators fixed it so the brand (BP, Exxon, etc.) was how the station was posted but it still contained the convenience store (Easy Trip, 7-Eleven, etc.) logo where applicable.

Here's what is states in the Pittsburgh Posting Standards topic

"Posting Station Names:

Please list stations by the name they are known locally. Alternative station names can be included in the Comments field when reporting prices, but this is not required.

We ask that stations be listed by their most recognizable name. For example, when someone sees the station for the first time, what is the name they will be looking for?

For example, if there is a station in your area known as "Bob's Auto" that happens to sell CITGO fuel, but the station doesn't prominently display the brand of fuel, just list the station name as "Bob's Auto".

Also, we ask that station names not be "personalized", as in "Love's Store # 234" or "Dave's Sunoco". In these cases, please just use "Love's" and "Sunoco", respectively."

Seems to fly in the face of what you use to get in trouble for bytebug.

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