The Expat Sweepstakes Exclusion

Every so often, such as today, I get an email or read an advertisement which states that US citizens can enter a Sweepstakes and possibly win, asking me to sign up and participate with no purchase necessary.  This used to sound cool until I read the small print which excludes American citizens working abroad:

Do not enter this Sweepstakes if you are not, at the time of entry (i) a legal U.S. resident located in the U.S.

Well, I’m a legal US resident and a legal US citizen, I guess, but I’m not “in” the US.  Why should I be?  I could be on the moon too, or even Mars!  I suppose that any American representative could explain that one in a jiffy, but I can’t seem to find a single one willing to do so since my address is not “in” the US.

The Sweepstakes “welcoming” letter writes:

You signed up to receive updates and offers about products, services and promotions that may be of interest to you.

Well, if one figures that this might be of interest to me, then is the exclusion necessary?  I doubt that one has to be a rocket scientist to figure that US citizens buy US products and services even when they don’t live in the US.  Is that a crime?


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