Why Giveaways Are YOUR Responsibility
While researching for a future project (which if you’ve been reading Bonjour, Blogger! for a while, you probably can guess what it’s about!), we spotted a recent judgement upheld by the ASA which was pretty interesting from a bloggers perspective.
A blogger had been given (judging by the wording on the original post) two products, one to review, and one to give away. They had written the review, put in the Rafflecopter widget amd chosen a winner on the widget when the giveaway finished. So far, so good.
However, it seems that the blogger did not get in touch with the person who believed they were the winner, and did not send out the prize. The person who believed they had won escalated it to the ASA (as any UK based person who takes part in a UK based giveaway is entitled to do) who upheld that complaint. The ruling the ASA made was that the giveaway must not appear in the current form again – however since the blogger has not posted since September, and did not respond to the ASA, it is uncertain what will happen next.
If you are holding the giveaway yourself, you must make as much effort as possible to get in contact with the winner of a giveaway. If they are not responding within a reasonable period, then you can redraw a winner which you can make a note of in your giveaway t&c’s (e.g. “if the winner does not respond within a week, I will redraw a winner” perhaps?) If a company is providing the product, then it’s a good idea to confirm exactly what the prize is – you don’t want the winner complaining because the prize isn’t what was advertised!
We are waiting to hear back from the ASA as to who they would hold responsible in providing a prize if the company has agreed to send it out, and will update the post, but you can use the CAP advice service to double check with them before making a giveaway live.
You can read the judgement here if you want to see the full adjudication.