ACCC takes Panasonic to court over Nintendo Wii promotion

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is taking Panasonic to court over alleged “misleading or deceptive conduct” related to a promotion which offered consumers a free Nintendo Wii with the purchase of a plasma TV.  

From November 23 to December 24 last year, Panasonic published ads offering bonus Nintendo Wii gaming consoles by redemption to all consumers who purchased a selected Full HD Viera Plasma television.

The ACCC alleges that contrary to Panasonic’s advertising, consumers could only make a valid claim for the bonus Wii by providing Panasonic with the television’s serial number, which could only be obtained upon delivery of the product.

However, there was no guarantee a consumer would receive their television within sufficient time to identify its serial number and submit a valid claim to Panasonic.

The ACCC alleges that by publishing advertisements offering bonus Wiis and failing to adequately disclose important conditions of the promotion, Panasonic engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct in contravention of section 52 of the Trade Practices Act 1974.

The watchdog is now seeking: declarations that Panasonic contravened section 52 of the Trade Practices Act; an injunction; corrective advertising; an order that Panasonic review and revise its internal business operations; an order that Panasonic establish and maintain a compliance program; and costs.

The matter will be heard in the Federal Court on February 17.


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