A supposedly fun and exciting BLACKPINK meet and greet in Manila turned sour following stories that fans were allegedly “scammed” by its organizer, shopping platform Shopee.
On June 6, #ShopeeScam topped the Philippine and worldwide trends as Filipino Blinks (fans of BLACKPINK) expressed their frustration at the organizer.
Fans shared stories of how they were “robbed” of their chance to see the group and posted screenshots as proof. Some claimed that the mechanics of the contest changed a day before the event.
Shopee PH robbed FILO BLINKS
— Nikka Bondoc (@nikka_bondoc) June 6, 2019
Some Blinks claimed they received a notification from Shopee telling them that they became part of the Top 568 spenders, the pool of customers who are eligible for Black tickets.
However, they say that the push notifications disappeared from the app and was replaced by another message saying the first information was incorrect and that there had been a system error, leading to miscommunication.
They also allege that the online retailer changed the rules a day before the fan meet. Original mechanics supposedly indicate that those who completed the orders placed from May 11 to 25 and received their purchases by June 1 can have the chance to get fan meet passes. This rule was allegedly changed to signify that only those who have received and completed the orders by 11:59 PM on May 25 can join the contest.
Meanwhile, another fan claimed Shopee staff laughed at them while raising the issue surrounding the changes in the mechanics in a phone call. Some Blinks who also called the management were apparently given different answers regarding the rule modification or were told that there had been no changes at all.
“In the mid [sic] of our conversation the staffs [sic] are laughing may narinig pa ko na ‘uto uto,” an anonymous fan said in a message sent to a fellow Blink. “Uto uto” is a Filipino slang which roughly translates to “stupidly gullible.”
Photos also circulated online showing documents labelled “Influencer Tickets” and “Celebrity Tickets” which only irked the fans more.
— ᴊᴀɴᴇ ʀɪᴇɢᴏ (@janextrilles) June 6, 2019
Because of this, some fans began mentioning the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) on what they should do, to which DTI responded that complaints should be filed directly to the Fair Trade and Enforcement Bureau.
We suggest that you lodge your complaint directly to Fair Trade and Enforcement Bureau (FTEB)Email : https://t.co/ykLZFtIqAR
— DTI Philippines (@DtiPhilippines) June 6, 2019
Shopee issued an apology past midnight, June 7.
— Shopee Philippines (@ShopeePH) June 6, 2019
“We would like to sincerely apologize for the issues involving the Shopee x BLACKPINK meet-and-greet today in Manila,” Shopee said.
“Although we took immediate steps as soon as we discovered the problems to ensure the rightful winners of our contest could claim their prizes, we know that the entire process caused confusion, disappointment and upset for many.”
“We are reaching out to all those affected by this issue, and we are also taking steps to ensure that such an incident does not occur again in the future.”
Dan Gambe contributed to this article.