A competition on the Every Can Counts Facebook page stated "Christmas ExtravaCANza … HAVE A CANNY CHRISTMAS … May the canniest Christmas creation win! WINNER GETS £200 High St Voucher … TWO RUNNERS-UP GET £50 High St Voucher."
The complainant challenged whether the competition was fairly administered because he was selected as a winner and was subsequently disqualified.
Alupro said that they chose two winners and three runners-up. They said that they contacted the winners and runners-up by e-mail and then announced the five names on Facebook. They explained that, after announcing the names, they received several complaints about the legitimacy of one of the winning entries and one of the runners-up entries. They said that they had received comments or private messages from seven people saying that they believed the complainant and one of the runners-up had cheated. They explained that some people suggested that they were the same person whilst others had pointed out that the runner-up had used the complainant's photo in other competitions. They pointed out that two of the complainants that contacted them were runners-up who had received prizes.
They said that they had decided to disqualify the complainant and the runner-up under point 10 of the terms and conditions, which stated "the Promoter reserves the right to exclude any entries which it believes to be fraudulent or based on misconduct (i.e. lifted from another online source)". They provided the terms and condition of the competition, a screenshot of the comments posted on the competition wall, two screenshots of the runner-up using the complainant's photo in other competitions and a link to a Twitter competition, in which the complainant's photo was posted as an entry by the runner-up. They also provided a link to a current Facebook competition, in which the runner-up had won the competition using the complainant's photo, but had subsequently been accused of cheating in comments posted on the competition wall.
The ASA acknowledged that Alupro had provided evidence to show that other entrants of the competition were suspicious of the complainant's entry. We also noted that the terms and conditions referred to one entry per person and Alupro provided evidence to show that one of the runners-up had used the complainant's photo in other competitions. However, we considered that it was possible that the runner-up of the competition had used the complainant's photo in other competitions without his knowledge. We considered that Alupro did not have adequate evidence to demonstrate that the complainant's entry was fraudulent or based on misconduct, as set out in the terms and conditions. We also considered that Alupro did not have any evidence to suggest that the complainant had lifted the photo from an online source or that the complainant had used two different identities to enter the promotion more than once. We noted that Alupro did not conduct their own investigation into the issue or contact the complainant to ask him to prove his identity. We noted the CAP Code stated that withholding prizes was justified only if participants had not met the qualifying criteria set out clearly in the rules of the promotion. Because we considered that Alupro did not hold documentary evidence to demonstrate that the complainant had not met the qualifying conditions set out, we concluded that the promotion was unfairly administered.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 8.2 8.2 Promoters must conduct their promotions equitably, promptly and efficiently and be seen to deal fairly and honourably with participants and potential participants. Promoters must avoid causing unnecessary disappointment. (Sales Promotions), 8.14 8.14 Promoters must ensure that their promotions are conducted under proper supervision and make adequate resources available to administer them. Promoters, agencies and intermediaries should not give consumers justifiable grounds for complaint. (Administration) and 8.27 8.27 Withholding prizes (see rules 8.15.1 and 8.2 8.2 Promoters must conduct their promotions equitably, promptly and efficiently and be seen to deal fairly and honourably with participants and potential participants. Promoters must avoid causing unnecessary disappointment. .2) is justified only if participants have not met the qualifying criteria set out clearly in the rules of the promotion. (Prize Promotions).
The ad must not appear in its current form. We told Alupro to hold adequate documentary evidence that a participant had not met the qualifying conditions set out clearly in the rules of the promotion before withholding a prize.