Archive for the ‘’ Category

If you see PAYPAL *PERCEPTUS on your credit card bill…

Monday, July 18th, 2011

Just a quick reminder, we use PayPal to handle our credit card transactions for, our survey service,, our Ivy DSL services,  and other one-off items.  When these transactions appear on your credit card statements, they will show as PAYPAL *PERCEPTUS.  Surprisingly, out of thousands of transactions, we’ve only had one or two people not recognize a payment to us.

Anyway, this post will hopefully be picked up by search engines to help future customers more easily recognize a payment to Perceptus via PayPal.  We’ll eventually post this on our corporate website too.

The Importance of Customer Feedback Surveys!

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

We admit it.  There is room for improvement at   We still firmly believe we operate the best web based bingo card generator.  Period.  However, there always has been a long list of items on the to-do list.  In our defense, we never really expected the site to continue to grow the way that it has.  In many ways, features were put-off until the traffic justified the effort.

We decided that we were long overdue to start actively seeking  feedback from our paid  users.  So we did.  Obviously, we used our own hosted survey service,  Eventually, we’ll create a separte survey for non-Premium users of our site too.  Both will be updated and revised as we go along.

We’ve got a handful of responses so far.  While there are no clear patterns, the input is extremely valuable.  It’s a highly recommended exercise.   After all, shouldn’t all decisions be data driven, if possible? Who are you?

Friday, July 3rd, 2009

I care about email security and transparency of email content a lot.  I deal with it all the time as a contractor who produces a email newsletters for local retailers.  I’m also the guy who teaches end users (including family) to be extremely skeptical about all the email they receive because 90% of it is fake, SPAM, and scams.

So, I get peeved when larger firms do email communications wrong.

Today I received an email invite from a company claiming to do work for Fido.  I think it’s cringe-worthy.

My first step in my research was a quick glance at the Fido homepage – no mention of a new survey program, though, I didn’t really expect to find one.

Looking strictly at the email itself then, here are some tidbits:

Subject line:  Invitation to Join the Fido Listens Panel

OK so far.

From: Fido Listens Team <>

Who is I’ve certainly never heard of them.  Definitely a yellow caution flag.

The email copy talks about a survey and some prizes for participating in Fido’s latest customer feedback thing.

A lot of scams offer prizes or financial incentives.   Can you get two yellow caution flags?  Or maybe just upgrade to a larger one.

The survey link goes to

Well, hosts the survey.  Their homepage looks legitimate at least.  Funny, I was expecting to be an online MP3 store.

And a support email address of

Wait, now what is More on Fido Listens later on.

And a contact mail address of Ipsos Reid, a well respected research firm based in Vancouver.

Ah! I’ve heard of them. Actually, I know people who have worked there. Of course, anyone can write an email with someone else’s legitimate mail address.

So, let’s review. Yes, I am a Fido cellphone user.  But who is  Do I really believe that they got my email address from Fido? Who is  And is IPSOS really involved?  At least this was somewhat comforting.  The vanity domain of forwards to…, i.e. a page belonging to IPSOS and transparently hosted by them on their own domain.

In the end, I feel comfortable doing a survey that is hosted by IPSOS.  But that’s only because I know that IPSOS Reid is a legitimate firm.  A little over a year ago I ranted about another Fido survey attempt in my blog post, How to Properly Use 3rd Party Web Services, I didn’t feel comfortable with the firm conducting that survey.

If you are using a 3rd party firm for surveys or anything that is customer related, please make it easy to verify that it’s legitimate.  At Papaya Polls, we offer to host our pages under your own subdomain.  It works great and it is very confidence inspiring.  I would have zero hesitation in doing a survey which had a web address of or

Anyway, enough ranting.  Time to enjoy the sun.

A bit of downtime the over the last couple days.

Thursday, April 17th, 2008

Quick note to all who use the various Perceptus web sites, particularly our bingo card site and our hosted survey site:

Our virtual private server hardware was upgraded.  A couple hours of downtime occurred.  We’re sorry for the inconvenience.  Unfortunately, our provider did not give us much of a warning. Things seem to be up and running, but a bit slow – I think that will fix itself soon.

How to Properly Use 3rd Party Web Services

Friday, April 4th, 2008

Today I got an email marketing message from Fido, my cellphone provider.


Unfortunately, Fido used a third party email and contest manager that makes me unsure if the email is real or a scam.

The email “from” line looks good:

But it’s trivial to fake a “from” line.

The email “reply-to”: fido.communication(xxxxxx)

I removed the x’s which I suspect are unique to my email address and used for mail list management.  It doesn’t really matter.  Is this address confidence inspiring to the non-technical user? Nope.

Worse, the email is about a contest.  In the email there is a link to enter the contest:

What is  And why should I enter my phone and other info into a website that doesn’t even spell conversation properly? (That’s a joke, I realize it’s a cute mispelling used for a website name).  Sure, there are Fido logos in the email and on the web page.  But who knows?  I’ve seen fake bank websites that also look authentic.  It’s easy to copy logos and verbage.

In the end, I decided to skip this contest.  Who knows if it’s a real contest or not.  Besides, I never win prizes anyway.

What should companies do?  Use their own domain for everything because they’re much harder to use fraudulently.  If they choose to outsource bulk email, use a provider that can use “” for their messages.  For contests?  “”.  For surveys, “”.

In fact, that’s exactly what we offer with the custom survey domain feature of  We have several clients who host surveys using a subdomain of their primary domain.

It works for everyone.  The end survey respondents are confident that the survey is legitimately from our customer.  Our customers are happy that their survey respondents are confident, and thus willing to answer the survey.  And we’re happy to have paying customers.

So there you go.  A rant and an advertisment for one of our websites all rolled into one.  Not bad for a Friday afternoon.