back to article 20 injured at LG phone giveaway as PR stunt turns into riot

LG has cancelled a series of publicity stunts promoting its new G2 smartphone after 20 Korean consumers were hurt as they attempted to get a free handset. The PR boffins at LG decided it would be a good idea to release 100 helium-filled balloons, each carrying a voucher entitling the recipient to claim their 950,000 won ($852. …


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  1. Charlie van Becelaere

    A Bit of a WKRP Moment, eh?

    "As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly."

    1. Don Jefe
      Thumb Up

      Re: A Bit of a WKRP Moment, eh?

      I was going to say the same thing! I was concerned no one else would get it. Glad to know I'm not alone.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Re: A Bit of a WKRP Moment, eh?

        One of the funniest episodes in TV sitcom history......

        1. Armando 123

          Re: A Bit of a WKRP Moment, eh?

          "One of the funniest episodes in TV sitcom history......"

          Can't think of a funnier one, to be honest. Just wish the music copyrights didn't make rebroadcast cost-prohibitive.

          1. Tom 35

            Just wish the music copyrights ...

            And crapped up DVDs with changed music.

    2. Armando 123
      Thumb Up

      Re: A Bit of a WKRP Moment, eh?

      Beat me to it; awesome.

      I think the whole episode (worth watching) is on hulu, but there is this:

  2. Arachnoid

    Aerial attack

    I'm surprised no one brought a quad-copter

    1. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

      Re: Aerial attack

      Right. Towing a long strip of flypaper.

      Shooting balloons doesn't appear to be an effective strategy. When they come down, odds are you won't be under them.

    2. Doug 3

      Re: Aerial attack

      might have been tested and found to shred the paper coupon inside the balloon.

  3. Steven Raith

    PR, or organisers?

    What sort of numpty thought releasing the balloons, with tokens worth nearly $1000 attached to them, at ground level, within a crowd, was a good idea? Most people would go bonkers for £50, never mind £500.

    Surely someone should have asked 'what happens if the guests/competitors/whomever decide to rush the person with the tokens and balloons'? Ideally within about ten minutes of the practicalities being ironed out....

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: PR, or organisers?

      The fact that they work in PR should be a clue

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Have LG never seen the scrum for things thrown into the crowd at gigs?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I was so close to getting a drumstick from Turisas, bounced off my fingertips, turns behind me and there was a dogpile where the stick had landed.

      Next day at Iron maiden the exact same thing happened, only the dogpile was much much bigger.

      I need to learn to catch.

      1. OvAl

        ...and it might also be interesting to learn why you are such an attractive target for heavy-metal drummers

        1. Mephistro

          "... such an attractive target for heavy-metal drummers"

          ...and dog piles.

  5. cosymart


    Good PR though as we are all discussing it...:-)

    1. Lusty

      Re: PR

      No, this is bad PR since PR stands for public relations. This is good advertising because we are talking about it, and probably bad marketing because it won't increase sales due to the bad PR.

      1. Lusty

        Re: PR

        I ought to add the following really:

        Advertising is getting people to know about you or your product.

        PR is getting them to like you or your product.

        Marketing is the study you do to find out how effective the above were.

        These are three distinct departments in sufficiently large companies, and certainly three distinct skills. Unfortunately RegTards often lump them all together because they don't know better.

        1. Intractable Potsherd

          Re: PR @ Lusty

          Two things worry me about your post:

          1. That you *care* that they may be a difference between those three things

          2. That you think anyone else cares about them

          No matter how you dress it up, anything other than respectable, trusted word-of-mouth recommendation is a form of fraud.

          1. Peter2 Silver badge

            Re: PR @ Lusty

            I wouldn't call any marketing activity a form of fraud. It doesn't trouble my morals to describe PR as PRopaganda, however.

            It's a more accurate description of the task undertaken than Public Relations.

          2. Lusty

            Re: PR @ Lusty

            "No matter how you dress it up, anything other than respectable, trusted word-of-mouth recommendation is a form of fraud."

            I'm not sure why you'd say that. Marketing is an internal exercise to determine the success or failure of a campaign, so the only fraud going on would be internal and therefore pointless, having no effect on customers other than more of the same kind of campaign.

            Advertising could be considered fraud, but if you take facebook advertising as an example, they are generally just making you aware of things you have implied an interest in - I get shown sailing holidays because I talk about boats a lot and am in the age bracket, am male, and probably several other factors. This isn't fraud, it's simply making me aware of the holiday provider whose message simply says they offer yachts in Croatia. It would only become fraud if I get there and they don't have yachts.

            As for PR, yes probably this is all propaganda usually and designed to minimise adverse affects of things a company does badly but also to maximise what they do well.

            I'm not sure why it worries you that I know the difference between these things. I don't care if other people know the difference either but it does bother me that so many commentards talk about marketing as if it's advertising which is is distinctly different from. This is due to OCD, you'll find a lot of the comments on this site are born out of OCD, and among nerds the much worse form of the affliction, CDO.

            1. Tom 35

              Re: PR @ Lusty

              "the only fraud going on would be internal and therefore pointless, having no effect on customers"

              The problem is that even in larger companies they are often overlapped or stacked.

              How else can you have a company in denial like Microsoft trying to tell us that everyone LOVES not-Metro and it's selling great, and if it's not selling it's because the other guys made the wrong type of computers... It's just a bunch of yes men in a circle jerk.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: PR & Marketing (The Bane of Humanity)

          Next to Marketing, PR and Advertising are the least effective or beneficial entities within a company.

          Sales, Engineering, Production/Manufacturing, Administration are all necessary to running a business. Any one of these departments can provide the majority of the functions of the above

          Did you notice what other category is missing? As long as people are willing to take personal responsibility for their actions and perform the very best they can, management is not a requirement.

          Think about that the next time you get a memo from your pointy haired management or marketing droid.

  6. Vociferous


    Imagine the body count if they had done this in the USA. Like a medieval battlefield, but with assault rifles.

    1. Armando 123

      Re: Amateurs.

      The LG event seems like a tame Tuesday morning in Detroit during an ice storm.

      However, here in the US people have a sense of security/lawsuit and I cannot imagine bb guns and knives on sticks being allowed in.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Stupidly, I watched the entire video

    There wasn't a single injured person on the video. Just a bunch of people jumping at balloons. Not sure what the article had to do with the video. I'm betting the injuries were things like "stepped on foot", "twisted ankle after jumping", "poked a finger in my eye".

    Probably get more real injuries at your average middle school soccer game.

    1. Tom 35

      Re: Stupidly, I watched the entire video

      Maybe they were all soccer players, and decided to take a dive.

  8. Anonymous Coward

    EXTREME marketing!!!

    It's not EXTREME marketing unless the possibility of death is involved!!!

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    >"People aren’t stupid."

    I think that whether you take the events described as evidence for or against that proposition is likely to be a matter of personal outlook!

    1. MacGyver

      Re: >"People aren’t stupid."

      The people that didn't show up weren't stupid. Only stupid people don't know that crowds are for stupid people.

  10. CmdrX3

    And on display today...

    ...we have human greed in all it's finery.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Looks like it worked perfectly to me. Didnt have to give away heaps of phones because of the other launches, got in to the media straight up! And someone got a sore foot, and some compensation. Im sure it'll pay back to LG just fine.

  12. paulc

    "This Video Is Private"

    is what it's coming up with now... :(

    1. james 68

      Re: "This Video Is Private"

      makes a change from "this content is unavailable in your country" which is the usual reg fair

      (last i checked Northern Ireland is still part of the UK and the UK is where theregister is based but whatever)

      i dont even try watching the vids on this site anymore

      1. Vociferous

        Re: "This Video Is Private"

        Install _Media Hint_ in your browser.

        Works for most regionally locked content except buying MP3:s, which are still far easier to pirate than buy due to record industry blocking sales across borders even within the EU.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Try this:

    Skip to about 45 seconds in.

  14. Al fazed Bronze badge

    Durr !

    What is the point in posting a video which begins with the words "This video is private", which then stops ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Durr !

      Try the one posted immediately above your comment.

      Durr ! ;)

  15. James 36


    A person isn't stupid, people often are

    1. lglethal Silver badge

      Re: blah

      "The intelligence of that creature known as a crowd is the square root of the number of people in it."

      -- Terry Pratchett

      1. Disintegrationnotallowed

        Re: blah

        As much as I like Pratchett this figure seems somewhat optimistic. It suggests that the bigger the crowd the more intelligent it is. I would suggest (1/n)*10 or some such inverse relationship

        1. lglethal Silver badge

          Re: blah

          Hmmm just thought about it a bit and I think your right. Maybe it should be just 1/sqrt(N).

          I think I need a univeristy grant to study this and determine the formula to determine the exact intelligence of a crowd... ;)

  16. squigbobble

    Jägermeister outdid this not so long ago-

    Take one pit and introduce something that will displace air, add drunk swimmers

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wouldn't lower myself. I'm worth more than a poxy phone FFS!

  18. Captain Scarlet Silver badge

    Knives, bb guns

    What no crossbows?

    I think if I saw members of the public with that sort of stuff I would think, something I can sell on ebay plus missing body parts (If I ever caught the thing) or yeah I think I'll leave.

  19. Lallabalalla


    YEAH - those stupid Apple-loving idiots putting themselves through ANYTHING to get their hands on... oh, wait.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well now we know... to make the next PARIS or LOHAN mission more exciting. Announce the launch point ahead of time, put a voucher in the balloon and invite responsible BB gun and crossbow owning Regbois to get a free Reg T-Shirt.

    Yes, that's right. I said it. Regbois.

  21. hi_robb


    It sounds like it was a popular event.

    /gets coat

  22. PaulR79


    "People aren’t stupid.


    BB guns, knives on sticks, and other tools."

    Are you sure about the first statement?

  23. ma1010

    For their next contest, perhaps they’ll select the winners the same way the BOFH selects telecommunications vendors. Put a half brick under each chair. Leave the room. Come back a few minutes later, and the last 10 standing get a free phone.

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