Last week we brought you news that some controversy was brewing over the Taco Bell 'Unlock the $5 Buck Box' contest, a contest claiming that every 15 minutes, someone would (supposedly) win a Vita. Problems arose when people who thought they won, later received notices that their codes were invalid. It was revealed today that hackers may be to blame for creating all this confusion.
At this point in time, many gamers have already purchased Sony's new handheld, a unit that's earning generally positive early impressions. Others who don't have the extra disposable income were hoping to win a unit from this contest. Those interested in entering had to purchase the Taco Bell's $5 Buck Box to get a code. Enter the code online and that person could win a free Vita.
A CBS news affiliate out of Sacramento posted a statement from Taco Bell revealing that those who received the 'Congratulations' message in error was caused by hackers.
"After a thorough investigation, and an additional review by the independent company administering the promotion, it was confirmed that these entrants viewed these messages as a result of others who attempted to gain illegal entry and defraud the system."
It's good to hear that Taco Bell found out why the system was sending out false wins to customers. However, what about those people – about 300 across the US – who got the message and were denied a Vita?
The company says that those who received the win screen in error will be placed in a drawing where only about two of the group will be selected to win a Vita. It's unfortunate that those who entered and thought they won, won't be receiving more after having their hopes dashed. Taco Bell could at least give them a free meal since they did spend $5 to enter the contest, although it's probably best for the entrants to not have more Taco Bell.
This contest was very similar to the Burger King Microsoft Kinect contest - Another contest that claimed that someone could win a Kinect several times an hour. Unfortunately for Sony, the Taco Bell contest didn't bring in all the positive hype that Microsoft gained from their Burger King giveaway. After spending $50 million on a marketing campaign, Sony is probably not too happy that they're not getting their money's worth.
Follow me on Twitter @Dwayne236