We like to keep things friendly. Anyone that’s interacted with us knows that.
We don’t like to bog our little promotions down with terms, conditions, fine print, gotchas or legalese. We’d rather give the 99.999%* who are approaching them honestly and in good faith a great experience than to build them to account for the small minority of people looking to game the system. When you build promotions with the 0.001% in mind, you end up making something that requires eight pages of rules and regulations.
We like to keep our relationships less combative than that. Respect for people — our customers and everyone else — is one of the key tenets on which Ting is built and one of the major differentiators between us and just about every other mobile company out there.
Anyone that went through the process to get a coffee on us (specifically, running a savings calculation with three recent bills in order to get a $5 gift card good at Starbucks) or anyone that’s jumped in on any of the various other promos we’ve run can attest to that.
Every once in a while though, someone comes along that wants to mess with the program.
This morning, we had just such a someone. A person who shall remain nameless decided to game the system, found an exploit and took over $35,000 worth of codes. Totally not in the spirit of the promotion we’re running. We won’t even wade into discussions of fraud and theft.
Whatever the case, we closed the loopholes. We had the codes snagged through nefarious means rendered null and void and we spoke to the law so that everything is on record.
We’re posting this for two reasons: For one, we wanted to let anyone that had problems with the Ting coffee promotion this morning know why and to offer an apology. Second, after spending entirely too much time dealing with this issue, we figured we should at least get a fun blog post out of the deal.
So, if you’re wondering about the math behind the headline, here it is:
7,050 coffee codes grabbed through nefarious means = $35,250 in credit
1 Venti coffee = $2.07 and 20 fl. oz. (590ml)
$35,250 buys 17028.99 Venti coffees
17029 Venti cups = 340,580 fl. oz. of coffee
340,580 fl. oz. = 2660.8 US gallons
*Adding three decimal places to a number automatically makes it 93.235% more scientific-looking.