A thread at Search Engine Watch forums named PPC Blackmail....... can easily top some of the scummiest PPC stories I have heard in a while. An affiliate came on to tell us how his affiliate manager set up strict guidelines for the affiliates that they must comply with or be kicked out of the program. The guidelines include:
(1) Your bid must be set to .50 cents (or less) this applies to both Google and Overture (2) Cannot use parent domain (3) You must stay out of the top 4 positions on Overture and with Google we'll see how it goes due to CTR bidding
The affiliate also noted that the reason for guideline number three, is because the affiliate manager (the merchant) was controlling the top four PPC ads with their own domain names. That specifically is against the PPC company's Terms of Service.
This should make for an interesting forum discussion.