Thinking Out Loud: Dishonest Companies

April 14, 2015

Alright guys, so today's post is going to be a little different but I just really felt the need to speak out about this, due to having dealt with it before and again fairly recently. But for the sake of professionalism and righteousness I won't be mentioning any names nor do I want this post to be considered slander in anyway.

So let me rewind to last week, I entered in this Instagram giveaway hosted by "Company X" and they said that the contest ended on April 7 and that they would announce 5 winners the next day. So I entered on April 5. I read the rules, which they had a direct link to in their Instagram bio, and which I briefly read, but I did make sure to read the deadline and the requirements in order to qualify to enter. The rules clearly stated that the contest would end April 7th and 5 winners would be announced the very next day (April 8) and that to be entered you have to repost the picture that was for the contest, use the hashtage #companyxsweeps and follow "Company X" and then a fashion blogger instagram, who is irrelevant in relation to this post.

So I did all that and then April 6 comes along and Company X posts another picture about the contest saying it ended April 6th and not the 7th. Initially I thought it was kind of strange because the other post clearly said April 7th, but then again I didn't think much of it after that either. So April 7 comes along..passes...then April 10th comes along and Company X still hasn't announced the winner to the contest, which they said they would "the day after the contest ended," but four days is obviously three too many days after they said they would announce them. The thought, "Oh, they're probably having a hard time choosing the winners," didn't even cross my mind at all, because I tracked the hashtag for the contest and only 60 people entered it. So because 60 is a easily divisible by 5, I figured it wouldn't be THAT hard to pick 5 winners. So I went on their Instagram account and commented on the contest photo asking if they were going to announce the contest winners. There was no response after fours hours, and of course I figured they're a pretty popular company so the chances of them seeing my comment were not very likely. So I commented again and two hours later still nothing, even though they just posted a picture (unrelated to the contest) within those same two hours of me commenting. And of course I thought it was kind of "shady" (for the lack of a better word) that they posted a non-related contest picture and nothing along the lines of an apology post for keeping the contestants waiting for the winners announcement. So to retaliate for this company having not posting anything related to the contest 4 days since the contest ended, I decided to consistently post comments on multiple pictures on their account asking if they were ever going to announce the winners. Then, get this, after commenting on at least 5 of their pictures, THEY BLOCKED MY INSTAGRAM ACCOUNT. Can you guys believe that? A brand name company, who is pretty well-known blocked one of their customers/followers. I believe that is seriously the definition of "UNPROFESSIONAL." I was appalled at the fact that I was merely just asking for the company to do what they promised their customers and contestants and because I was constantly asking whether or not they were going to announce the winners they decided to block me.

And of course I told my friends about what happened and they started commenting on Company X's Instagram asking about the contest as well, then other followers/contestants took notice and realized that the company was in fact using the contest as the publicity stunt. It was until two days after they had blocked me and a couple more comments about being a greedy company and using their followers for publicity that Company X finally announced contest winners.

The reason for why I'm so upset with Company X is that the contest they had was obviously a publicity stunt. It wasn't obvious at first but it shouldn't have taken 6 days and various comments about being a greedy company to announce the winners. And although I hold nothing personal against them blocking me, I feel that overall that was a very unprofessional action to take just because I was the first to speak out towards their dishonesty.

And as I mentioned earlier, this has happened to me twice. The first time this happened to me, the same thing basically happened that happened with Company X. It was an Instagram contest where the contestants had to repost pictures and tag the comapny in them. But unlike Company X they announced the winners, but never sent out the prices to the winners. Of course I spoke out against this company and emailed them a total of three times. Although more professional than Company X this company still had not sent me the prize after 3 months, 3 emails of waiting, although they said they would send me the prize I felt 3 months of waiting was ridiculous so although they apologized and promised to send the prize, I felt too prideful to even accept anything from them.

Overall the moral of the story here is that there will be dishonest companies out there but don't be afraid to speak out against them because it is unfair and unjust for companies to use loyal customers for publicity.

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