UPDATE: After becoming the object of Internet ridicule, 1-800-Flowers has decided to change its position and not only provide the rescue group with the year’s supply of dog food, but two years’ of supply.
Here is the statement, as posted on BlogFourPaws.com:
At 1-800-FLOWERS.COM, we pride ourselves on offering creative and engaging contests for our customers. We apologize that there has been a misunderstanding about the prize fulfillment regarding our recent There’s a New Bunny In Town. We are looking into the matter immediately and we promise to follow up with the winner to ensure the prize is fulfilled appropriately.
Several months ago, the folks at 1-800-Flowers held a photo contest, wherein dog owners submitted pics of their pooches wearing bunny ears and then stumped for votes. The person who submitted the winning photo was to win, among other things, a year’s supply of dog food. But, says the winner, when 1-800-Flowers found out she’d be giving her winnings to an animal rescue, it decided she didn’t win the contest after all.
BlogFourPaws.com has the full details of the story, but here are some basics.
The woman who submitted the photo says she openly did so on behalf of the rescue organization and claims she saw nothing in the rules forbidding her from doing so.
But after she won and provided 1-800-Flowers with the rescue’s address as the destination for the dog food, she never heard back from the website, nor did the rescue receive the dog food.
She says multiple attempts to contact the company were ignored or brushed off. Until she finally got someone who told her that the contest’s prize was non-transferable and she had voided her contest win by asking for the dog food to be sent to the rescue.
Attempts to get a further response have been futile, say the rescue people.
BlogFourPaws also reached out to Wag.com, the company that was to provide the actual food for the prize and received this more hopeful response:
We’re working on getting to the bottom of the 1-800-FLOWERS, promotion, since so much has happened lately regarding this! We’ve contacted [the rescue organization] and spoken with 1-800-FLOWERS about this, but unfortunately, we aren’t able to disclose the details of what’s being discussed with them at this time. Don’t worry, though–as soon as we’re able, we will keep everyone in the loop–especially since their fans are the ones that helped [the dog owner] to win the contest in the first place!
While we could understand that 1-800-Flowers might have an issue with sending the prize to someone other than the declared winner, we don’t see how a mere request voids her victory. If the company insists on it being a non-transferable prize, than send the food to the woman who won; she can do with it as she pleases at that point.
Thanks to everyone who sent in the tip!