Islam Q&A: Is it required to specify the length of the rental period, and what is the ruling on paying per click for advertisements?

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Q: A place on a webpage is specified for advertising for other websites. Is it a must or not to specify the period of time for renting this place, by saying: “I will put the advertisement on my website for one year”? Is it permissible to take the fees according to how many persons click on the advertisement, for example 1 SR per click?.

A: There is nothing wrong with renting a space on a website for advertisements for other sites, so long as those sites do not contain anything haraam, such as websites for men and women to get to know one another, or websites for haraam music and movies and plays, or immoral audio and video links, or sites for followers of innovation, and so on. It is not permissible to advertise for these, because that is taking part with them in the haraam things that they are promoting.

..As for the length of the rental period, one of the conditions of a rental contract being valid is that the period should be known, and the rent should be known.

…It is permissible, in a rental contract, to agree on a certain amount of money every day, for example, or a certain amount of money every month, without stipulating the end of the period. Ibn Qudaamah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in al-Mughni: If a person rents a horse for the period of a campaign for one dirham every day, what is narrated from Imam Ahmad is that (this contract) is valid, because ‘Ali (may Allaah be pleased with him) hired himself out every day at a rate of one date for every bucket, and the Ansaari did likewise, and the Prophet  (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) did not denounce that. End quote. The fact that the number of potential visitors is unknown at the time when this rental contract is drawn up does not affect the validity of the contract, because this uncertainty will eventually be resolved.

Based on this, you may either stipulate in the contract a complete period of time such as a month or a year for example, or you may stipulate the rent for each day, for example, even if you do not stipulate when the rental period will end.

With regard to renting according to the number of clicks on the ad, it seems that there is nothing wrong with it, so long as there is agreement on the price per click, provided that you do not use a program to increase the number of people entering the site or hire someone to enter the site repeatedly.

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