A UK radio station has fallen foul of the authorities after running a competition last May in which they gave away 100 prizes ‘to go to Athens and watch the Champions League final’.
What BRMB, who are based in England’s midlands, failed to mention was that the ‘Athens’ in question was a Greek restaurant in Birmingham rather than the city where the match was taking place.
This led to complaints from three of the winners who felt they were unfairly misled. Ofcom ruled that the competition had breached rules on fairness and had been executed “in a manner designed to obscure the true nature of the prize”.
BRMB’s owners, GCap Radio, claim that they had given clues to listeners to indicate that the prize was not a trip to Greece.
“The fact the radio station advised people to arrive at BRMB for 1500 BST on the day of the match (taking into account the time difference and flight time to Greece from the UK) should have alerted participants to the fact something was amiss.”
However, the first of these ‘clues’ was not given until a full week after listeners had been encouraged to enter the competition.
The watchdog said it would not take action against the station as it was the first breach recorded against them. The cost of entry to the competition – ran by SMS – was refunded to the complainants.
The competition was broadcast on the station’s Drivetime show.