A prize draw, seen on 28 October 2018 on the website www.zavvi.co.uk, offered entrants the opportunity to win a trip to Disneyland Paris. Text stated "Win a magical weekend with your family to celebrate 90 years of Mickey magic at Disneyland Paris with Mastercard. Start Something Priceless!". Further text stated "All you need to do is pay with Mastercard when you make a purchase on Zavvi.com between 19th September 2018 and 31st October 2018 (inclusive), enter your email address below and you'll be entered into the competition for a chance to win a trip to Disneyland Paris for Mickey's Birthday Celebrations".
The complainant, who won the prize, but was told they had responded too late, challenged whether the promotion breached the Code.
The Hut.com Ltd t/a Zavvi said the terms of the promotion stated "The winners will be contacted by email (Notification Email). The winners need to confirm that they are eligible and able to accept within the 24 hour period from when the email is sent. If a winner does not contact us within this time period, we reserve the right to choose another winner at random from all other eligible entries".
Zavvi said the notification email reiterated the need for the complainant to contact them within 24 hours, in accordance with the terms. They said although the terms stated "we may, at our sole discretion, call the winner and send them reminder emails during or following this time period in order to get a response to the Notification Email", they did not say they would definitely do so. They said the complainant did not respond within 24 hours and therefore the prize was awarded to a replacement entrant at random.
The CAP Code stated that promoters must conduct their promotions equitably, promptly and efficiently and deal fairly and honourably with participants and potential participants. It also stated that promoters must avoid causing unnecessary disappointment and should not give consumers justifiable grounds for complaint, and that promotions must communicate all applicable significant conditions or information where the omission of such conditions or information is likely to mislead.
The ASA noted that the terms and conditions of the promotion, which were linked to from the main promotion page, stated that winners needed to confirm that they were eligible and able to accept within the 24-hour period from when the confirmation email was sent, and that Zavvi had sent the complainant an email notifying them they had won and had 24 hours to respond. Because there could have been any number of reasons why participants were not able to check their emails over the period, we considered the requirement to respond within 24 hours was a significant condition that was likely to affect their understanding of the promotion and as such should have been prominently stated in the ad.
No information about when consumers would be notified appeared in the ad or the terms and conditions, only that winners were selected in a random draw after the closing date. Without that information, neither participants nor potential participants were made aware of when they would have needed to have checked their emails for that notification. We considered that was also significant information likely to affect their understanding of the promotion and should also have been prominently stated in the ad.
Therefore, because Zavvi did not prominently state when winners would be notified, or that entrants were required to respond within 24 hours of that notification, we considered that participants had not been dealt with fairly and concluded that the ad breached the Code.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules
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.
All marketing communications or other material referring to promotions must communicate all applicable significant conditions or information where the omission of such conditions or information is likely to mislead. Significant conditions or information may, depending on the circumstances, include:
(Significant conditions for promotions),
How to participate
How to participate, including significant conditions and costs, and other major factors reasonably likely to influence consumers' decision or understanding about the promotion (How to participate) and 8.28.4 8.28.4 how and when winners will be notified of results (Prize promotions).
The promotion must not be run again in its current form. We told The Hut.com Ltd t/a Zavvi to ensure that future promotions that included terms that resulted in forfeiture of a prize if the winner failed to respond within a certain time period prominently informed participants and potential participants when winners would be notified and the timeframe within which to respond.