Let's cut to the chase. What's in this for me? GeoRewards members get lots of benefits. First, you'll get extra visibility for your site for free. Then, there will be a monthly drawing for prizes, and you'll get more chances to win when you get more visits to your site. Plus, with GeoPoints, you can save up to purchase lots of great items from the GeoStore.
What's in this for GeoCities? We're already the largest and most popular collection of free personal home pages on the Web. And quite simply, we want to continue to be the place you'll want to put your site. One way for us to do that is to make GeoCities the most fun and rewarding place for you to place your personal page. Plus, by providing additional exposure for our sponsors, we can continue to fund the programs that keep GeoCities exciting and fun for everyone.
How does the sweepstakes work? Each month, there will be a sweepstakes drawing for great prizes. You'll earn one "virtual sweepstakes ticket", or GeoTicket, for each qualified visit to pages on your site that display GeoRewards banners. Each month's drawing is based only on that month's activity, so your GeoTickets are good only for that month. The grand prize winners in the December sweepstakes will get a free copy of Microsoft FrontPage 97 and a one-year subscription to MSN.
What's the difference between GeoPoints and GeoTickets? GeoRewards members get 5 GeoPoints a month. GeoPoints are the new currency of GeoCities, and are redeemable at the GeoStore. Members also get one GeoTicket for each qualified visit to pages on their site that display GeoRewards banners. GeoTickets are the "virtual sweepstakes tickets" for our monthly drawing.
This sounds like a lot to keep track of. What do I have to do? You bet it's a lot to keep track of, but GeoCities does all the work. Just create a great site and a great banner and you're ready to go. We'll be counting your totals in the background.
What's a "qualified visit"? Not that you don't have anything better to do with your time, but we don't want to encourage people to spend all day pressing the "reload" button on their browsers just to generate visits to their own sites. There are much better ways to build traffic for your site – mostly your devoted attention and creativity! So, we're going to count "qualified visits" using a similar method to that employed by Internet Profiles Corp. (I/PRO), the leading audit company on the Web. Basically, we'll count a qualified visit each time your pages that carry a banner are visited from a given IP address, so long as our logs don't show a visit to that page from the same IP address within the prior 30 minutes. (IP address is Internet-speak for the code assigned to your computer whenever you log onto the Web). So, if one person looks at each page of your GeoCities site several times within a span of 20 minutes, that's counted as one visit to each page; only after that visitor has surfed elsewhere for at least 30 minutes can he return to your page and be counted as another qualified visit. GeoCities also reserves the right to disqualify visits if they appear to represent unusually high activity in some other fashion. Homesteaders who generate disqualified visits are subject to penalties at the discretion of GeoCities, including loss of GeoPoints and GeoTickets and cancellation of GeoCities service.
How often will my banner appear on other homesteaders' pages? The number of times your banner appears will be based on two things: the qualified visits to your page and the total qualified visits to all pages in the program. You'll get a pro rata share of all homesteader banner rotations based on your traffic. We'll cap the appearances of any one banner at 2 percent of the total homesteader rotation.
How can I get the highest number of visits to my site? The work you put into your site is the best way to make it fresh and compelling enough to be of interest to others. Plus, please take a look at the GeoCities guide to getting your page listed on other search services and newsgroups.
What other types of banners will appear on my site? In addition to homesteader banners, messages from GeoCities and its sponsors will be featured.
So what, do I have to be Picasso to make my own banner? Maybe, if you want a really good one! However, if you don't feel capable, we've assembled a list of volunteers who are willing to provide assistance and, in some cases, flat out do it for you. Please take it easy on them!
What do I do with the banner when it's done? When your banner is completed, upload the file to GeoCities using your preferred ftp method. If you're not familiar with ftp, we've got a simplified process that makes it easier than ever. Then, once we've got it, go to the Submit Banner page to let us know it's there. You'll find a simple form that takes just a moment to complete. Anytime you submit a new banner, you'll need to go through this process again.
Can I change my banner once I've submitted it, or do I always have to keep the same one? You can change your banner whenever you'd like. Just be sure to submit the new one for approval, and it will take the place of your old banner in the rotation.
When I try to submit my banner, it shows up in the preview, but then when I click "Apply", it says it can't find my banner. What's up? You need to make sure that you've capitalized the appropriate letters in your neighborhood name. Make sure you've typed TimesSquare instead of timessquare, Heartland instead of heartland, etc. This will solve the problem.
Do I have to be Einstein to create a slot for banners atop my home page? No, not at all. Once you're registration is complete, we'll notify you with an e-mail that has a simple code you can cut and paste to your page coding, and an even simpler process that allows you to turn the banner rotation on and off. We know the HTML coding looks simple, but that's all it takes -- the GeoCities servers take care of the rest. Neat, huh?
How quickly will my page be able to accept banners, and how quickly will my banner get into the rotation? As soon as you turn the banner rotation process on for all the pages on which you've created a banner slot, the banners will begin to appear.
When I put the coding for banners in my page I lose my background and my text colors. What happened? You need to make sure you put the html coding we gave you after the body background tag. That will give you your background back.
Are there guidelines for where the GeoRewards banners must appear on my site, or how my banner looks? Yes. All GeoRewards banners must be at the top of any page on which they appear. You can include banners on as many of your HTML pages as you like. The same content guidelines that apply to homesteader pages also apply to banners; however, our standards for banners are higher, since they will be showing up on other homesteaders' pages. Other than that, all you need to know is that the banner you create to promote your site must be exactly 468 x 60 pixels, smaller than 8KB, and in either a GIF or JPG format. It can even be an animated GIF, as long as it's under 8KB. (And yes, we are quite strict about the 8KB limit.)
I've sat there reloading the page for an hour looking for my banner, and I can't find it. Where is it? Your banner will show up in rotation as long as you're getting seven qualified visits a day. Keep in mind that there are hundreds of homesteader banners in the rotation -- the odds of seeing your own are pretty slim.
Can I participate in GeoRewards without creating an ad banner for my page? Certainly. You can participate in the sweepstakes and earn GeoPoints just as long as you register and create a spot atop your home page where GeoCities can serve other banners. Give us your banner whenever you wish, or not at all. If you think it'll take you some time to build a banner, but want to join GeoRewards, sign up right away and start earning GeoPoints; then, get us your banner whenever you can. Remember: having a banner for your site will help you draw crowds!
Tell me more about GeoPoints. How do I earn them? Each homesteader earns five GeoPoints per month just for being in the program. If your site is in the Featured Home Page program, you can earn even more GeoPoints. Plus, you'll be able to earn up to 20 GeoPoints monthly for participating in GeoCities community activities such as Community Leader or volunteering to create homesteader banners for GeoRewards.
Am I going to grow old before my GeoPoints are worth anything? No, they're redeemable almost immediately. For example, with 130 GeoPoints you can purchase one of our collectible t-shirts bearing the GeoCities logo. You can also now redeem 150 GeoPoints for 500 American Airlines AAdvantage miles at the GeoStore.
How can I see how many GeoPoints and GeoTickets I have? I was admitted a week ago, so why aren't there any GeoPoints or GeoTickets in my account? You can see your GeoPoint and GeoTicket totals in the Personal Profile Editor. We're updating the totals twice a month (like a paycheck), so check back after the beginning or middle of the month for up-to-date totals. Plus, we'll also send you an e-mail twice a month to let you know how many GeoPoints and GeoTickets you've accumulated.
How long will my GeoPoints remain valid? GeoPoints remain valid for three years after they're earned, if you've remained a GeoCities homesteader for the entire time. You'll lose your GeoPoints if you cancel your account or move your pages to another provider.
Why does my site need to draw a minimum number of visits to qualify? Because we're such a large site with so many homesteaders, there are significant expenses involved in providing this type of service to homesteaders. To make GeoRewards as widely available as possible, we set the minimum of seven visits per day. Even if your site does not meet the minimum, you can still earn GeoPoints by opening a slot atop your home page to accept GeoRewards banners.
GeoRewards, GeoTicket, GeoPoints and GeoStore: Are you guys getting GeoCarriedAway? Hey, we're GeoCities!