Hi partners!


We just returned from our site visit to Houston! I had a great time working with 30+ team members who help lead our strategy and logistics to make WPC a fresh, modern experience for you to conduct business-building and hear about what the leadership at Microsoft has to say about where we’re heading.
During our visit, we had the opportunity to meet with IAMCP members from Houston, leaders from the Houston Technology Center, and the Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau. All of these groups gave us insight into how we can make your experience at WPC a memorable and valuable one. I’ll be highlighting and sharing with you more about the Houston Technology Center soon, because they are doing great work for Houston and have partnerships and resources that I think could benefit you at WPC.
One of the primary reasons we chose Houston for WPC 2013 is the diverse districts and eclectic culture that will appeal to all of our partners attending. Our site visit only confirms that there really is something for everyone. What struck me, too, was how much this matches our partner ecosystem. In Toronto, we had 16,000 attendees from more than 153 countries represented. You can’t get much more diverse than that! And it leaves me with the question, where are you coming from?
That’s exactly what we’d like to hear from you about. We’re expecting partners from at least 160 countries to be at WPC 2013, which means that potentially thousands of towns situated across the globe could be represented, too.
Beginning November 12, we’ll be launching a twitter sweepstakes for partners! So, tell us about your town—and you could win a prize! To enter, between November 12 and November 30, post to Twitter what is special about your town, attach a photo to your tweet that represents your town, and include the hashtag #WPC13. We’ll be giving away three portable USB power sticks and two MPN padfolios. Please see sweepstakes official rules below.
I’m really looking forward to seeing all the unique places our partners represent. It’ll be a wonderful testament to the depth of our partner community —and solutions—that make up the Microsoft Partner Network. And remember, the deadline is November 30, so tweet your entry beginning Monday, November 12th!
PLEASE NOTE:  It is your sole responsibility to review and understand your employer’s policies regarding your eligibility to participate in trade promotions.  If you are participating in violation of your employer’s policies, you may be disqualified from entering or receiving prizes. Microsoft disclaims any and all liability or responsibility for disputes arising between an employee and their employer related to this matter, and prizes will only be awarded in compliance with the employer’s policies.
GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES: Microsoft is committed to complying with government gift and ethics rules and therefore government employees are not eligible.
This Sweepstakes is hosted in the United States, and entry information is collected on computers in the United States. This Sweepstakes will be governed by the laws of the State of Washington, and you consent to the exclusive jurisdiction and venue of the courts of the State of Washington for any disputes arising out of this Sweepstakes. If you do not agree with this provision and these Official Rules, please do not enter this Sweepstakes.
These are the official rules that govern how the Microsoft WPC My Town Twitter sweepstakes promotion will operate.  This promotion will be simply referred to as the “Sweepstakes” throughout the rest of these rules. In these rules, “we,” “our,” and “us” refer to Microsoft Corporation, the sponsor of the Sweepstakes. “You” refers to an eligible Sweepstakes entrant. 
This Sweepstakes starts at 12:01 a.m. Pacific Time (PT) on Monday, November 12, 2012, and ends at 11:59 p.m. PT on Friday, November 30, 2012 (“Entry Period”).  Entries must be received during the Entry Period to be eligible. 
You are eligible to enter this Sweepstakes if you meet the following requirements at time of entry:
  • You are an authorized representative of a company actively enrolled in the Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) and you are 18 years of age or older; and
  • If you are 18 of age or older, but are considered a minor in your place of residence, you should ask your parent’s or legal guardian’s permission prior to submitting an entry into this Sweepstakes; and
  • You are NOT a resident of any of the following countries: Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria.
  • PLEASE NOTE: U.S. export regulations prohibit the export of goods and services to Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria. Therefore residents of these countries / regions are not eligible to participate.
  • You are NOT an employee of Microsoft Corporation or an employee of a Microsoft subsidiary; and
  • You are NOT involved in any part of the administration and execution of this Sweepstakes; and
  • You are NOT an immediate family (parent, sibling, spouse, child) or household member of a Microsoft employee, an employee of a Microsoft subsidiary, or a person involved in any part of the administration and execution of this Sweepstakes.
This Sweepstakes is void outside of the geographic area described above and wherever else prohibited by law.
You can enter by signing into your twitter account, posting a message about why you love your town, include a picture that represents “your town”, and reference hashtag #WPC13 during the sweepstakes start and end dates listed above.   Your tweet should match the following format:
The picture included in your tweet must be your own original work. It must also meet the following:
  • You must have obtained any and all consents, approvals, or licenses required for you to submit the photo; and
  • Your entry may not include any third party trademarks (logos, names) or copyrighted materials (music, images, video, recognizable people) unless you have obtained permission o use the materials.
Entries may NOT contain, as determined by us, in our sole and absolute discretion, any content that:
  • is sexually explicit, unnecessarily violent or derogatory of any ethnic, racial, gender, religious, professional or age group; profane or pornographic;
  • promotes alcohol, illegal drugs, tobacco, firearms/weapons (or the use of any of the foregoing) or a particular political agenda;
  • is obscene or offensive;
  • defames, misrepresents or contains disparaging remarks about other people or companies;
  • contains trademarks, logos, or trade dress (such as distinctive packaging or building exteriors/interiors) owned by others;
  • contains copyrighted materials owned by others (including photographs, sculptures, paintings, and other works of art or images published on or in websites, television, movies or other media);
  • contains materials embodying the names, likenesses, voices, or other indicia identifying any person, (other than the member of your family or community for you have received consent) including, without limitation, celebrities and/or other public or private figures, living or dead;
  • contains look-alikes of celebrities or other public or private figures, living or dead;
  • communicates messages or images inconsistent with the positive images and/or good will to which we wish to associate; and/or violates any law;
  • We reserve the right to reject any entry, in our sole and absolute discretion, that we determine does not meet the above criteria.
Only one (1) entry into the Sweepstakes will be permitted per twitter handle.

We are not responsible for entries that we do not receive for any reason, or for entries that we receive but are not decipherable for any reason.
We will automatically disqualify:
  • Any incomplete or illegible entry; and
  • Any entries that we receive from you that are in excess of the entry limit described above.
Other than what is set forth below, we are not claiming any ownership rights to your entry. However, by submitting your entry, you:
  • are granting us an irrevocable, royalty-free, worldwide right and license to: (i) use, review, assess, test and otherwise analyze your entry and all its content in connection with this Contest; and (ii) feature your entry and all content in connection with the marketing, sale, or promotion of this Contest or WPC 2013 (including but not limited to internal and external sales meetings, conference presentations, tradeshows, and screen shots of the Contest entry in press releases) in all media (now known or later developed) OPTIONAL: for the period of one (1) year from the date final winners are announced publicly. 
  • agree to sign any necessary documentation that may be required for us and our designees to make use of the rights you granted above;
  • understand and acknowledge that the Sponsor(s) may have developed or commissioned materials similar or identical to your submission and you waive any claims you may have resulting from any similarities to your entry;
  • understand that we cannot control the incoming information you will disclose to our representatives in the course of entering, or what our representatives will remember about your entry. You also understand that we will not restrict work assignments of representatives who have had access to your entry. By entering this Contest, you agree that use of information in our representatives’ unaided memories in the development or deployment of our products or services does not create liability for us under this agreement or copyright or trade secret law;
  • understand that you will not receive any compensation or credit for use of your entry, other than what is described in these Official Rules
  • Please note that following the end of this Contest your entry may be posted on a website selected by us for viewing by visitors to that website. We are not responsible for any unauthorized use of your entry by visitors to this website. While we reserve these rights, we are not obligated to use your entry for any purpose, even if it has been selected as a winning entry.

On or around the close of the Entry Period, we will randomly select winners of the prizes designated below. 
A total of five (5) prizes will be awarded randomly. Three (3) USB powered portable power sticks and two (2) Microsoft logo’d padfolios will be given. The value of each of these prizes does not exceed US$100.00.
We will only award one (1) prize per person during the Entry Period. Only three (3) alternate drawings will be held after which the applicable prize will remain un-awarded.
If you are a potential winner, we will notify you first through Twitter, in order to secure additional contact information from you, and then by sending a message to the e-mail address, the phone number, or mailing address (if any) provided at time of entry within seven (7) days following the random drawing.  If the notification that we send is returned as undeliverable, or you are otherwise unreachable for any reason, we may award the prize to an alternate, randomly selected winner. 
If there is a dispute as to who is the potential winner, we will consider the potential winner to be the authorized account holder of the e-mail address used to enter the Sweepstakes. If you are a potential winner, we may require you to sign an Affidavit of Eligibility, Liability/Publicity Release and a W-9 tax form or W-8 BEN tax form within 10 days of notification. If you are a potential winner and you are 18 or older, but are considered a minor in your place of legal residence, we may require your parent or legal guardian to sign all required forms on your behalf.  If you do not complete the required forms as instructed and/or return the required forms within the time period listed on the winner notification message, we may disqualify you and select an alternate, randomly selected winner.
If you are confirmed as a winner of this Sweepstakes:
  • You may not exchange your prize for cash or any other merchandise or services.  However, if for any reason an advertised prize is unavailable, we reserve the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value; and
  • You may not designate someone else as the winner.  If you are unable or unwilling to accept your prize, we will award it to an alternate potential winner; and
  •  If you accept a prize, you will be solely responsible for all applicable taxes related to accepting the prize; and
  •  If you are otherwise eligible for this Sweepstakes, but are considered a minor in your place of residence, we may award the prize to your parent/legal guardian on your behalf; and
  •  Unless otherwise noted, all prizes are subject to their manufacturer’s warranty and / or terms and conditions. 
Your odds of winning this Sweepstakes depend on the number of eligible entries we receive.
By entering this Sweepstakes you agree:
  • To abide by these Official Rules; and
  • To release and hold harmless Microsoft, and its respective parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, employees and agents from any and all liability or any injury, loss or damage of any kind arising from or in connection with this Sweepstakes or any prize won; and
  • That Microsoft’s decisions will be final and binding on all matters related to this Sweepstakes; and
  • That by accepting a prize, Microsoft may use of your proper name and state of residence online and in print, or in any other media, in connection with this Sweepstakes, without payment or compensation to you, except where prohibited by law.
This Sweepstakes will be governed by the laws of the State of Washington, and you consent to the exclusive jurisdiction and venue of the courts of the State of Washington for any disputes arising out of this Sweepstakes.  
If cheating, a virus, bug, catastrophic event, or any other unforeseen or unexpected event that cannot be reasonably anticipated or controlled, (also referred to as force majeure) affects the fairness and / or integrity of this Sweepstakes, we reserve the right to cancel, change or suspend this Sweepstakes.  This right is reserved whether the event is due to human or technical error. If a solution cannot be found to restore the integrity of the Sweepstakes, we reserve the right randomly to select winners from among all eligible entries received before we had to cancel, change or suspend the Sweepstakes.
If you attempt to compromise the integrity or the legitimate operation of this Sweepstakes by hacking or by cheating or committing fraud in ANY way, we may seek damages from you to the fullest extent permitted by law.  Further, we may ban you from participating in any of our future Sweepstakes, so please play fairly.
We will post the names of winners who received a prize worth $25.00 or more online at http://www.digitalwpc.com. This list will remain posted until December 14, 2012.
Microsoft Corporation
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Redmond, WA 98052