At the same time, the FTC chooses to turn a blind eye to certain blatantly illegal lotteries, such as the latest promotion by America West Airlines.
America West promised customers that they would receive a discount between 5% and 50% of the published ticket price, with the amount to be determined only after the ticket was purchased. According to information presented on the America West web site, this is at least the third time they have run this promotion. The current promotion ends February 20, 2000. (A previous promotion ran for the one week period ending November 28, 1999.)
Calls to America West were met with assurances that the attorneys in their legal affairs office had reviewed the promotion, while the clerks answering the FTC phones were slow to recognize why America West's promotion would fit the definition of a lottery if they were providing the discounts as promised.
Here's a simple review of the elements required for a lottery: