Festival organisers fined for unsolicited texts

9th December 2014
60013931 - close-up view of young woman filling online customer service satisfaction survey.

The company behind Manchester’s annual festival, the Parklife Weekender has been fined £70,000 after sending unsolicited marketing text messages. As the message was sent to nearly 70,000 people the fine has cost them more than £1.00 per recipient!

The main issue was that the organisers tried to be ‘quirky’ and sent the SMS with the senders name as ‘Mum’. Whilst the marketing team may have thought this creative, they did not take into account the PECR regulations, which states that the ‘identity of the person on whose behalf the communication has be sent must NOT be disguised or concealed.

The SMS was therefore deemed to have been unsolicited.

The organisers received many complaints, as did the ICO directly, and the largest reason for their complaints was that they sent the SMS from ‘Mum’, and many of the recipients had mothers who had passed away.

The organisation also did themselves and their customers a disservice by belittling the complaints with tweets such as:-

”So this is what it feels like to be a jar of Marmite #LoveItOrHateIt”.

read full ICO judgement | read BBC article

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