Notice

‘Without Prejudice’

FINAL UPDATE: EXPLANATION OF THE DELAY
There are various reasons why we have delayed the announcement pending the outcome of the investigations.
We have now received replies from Clickatell and from CELL C (via Clickatell) but they have not been favourable.
All our requests to CELL C below have been sent via Clickatell to CELL C.

Please make sure you’ve read the full article before commenting.

Relationship between the parties involved in the competition:
myMOSTbeautiful.com works through a third party service provider, Clickatell, who works with the Mobile Network Providers (MTN, Vodacom, CELL C etc). Clickatell provides a voting line in exchange for purchased credits. We do not have direct relationships with the networks and in this case with CELL C (where the ‘technical glitch’ occurred) and as a result we work through Clickatell to communicate with all Mobile Network Operators.

What happened and why the announcement was delayed
This year’s myMOSTbeautiful.com BABY competition was unfortunately affected by a major ‘technical glitch’ on the CELL C network (23rd May 2017).
This was discovered after the TOP 100 babies were announced, and as a result we had to immediately postpone the announcement of the winner.
CELL C acknowledged this ‘technical glitch’ on the 6 July 2017.
As a result of this and unbeknown to us all votes cast on the CELL C network on the 34056 SMS shortcode number (the R30 shortcode/voting number) after the 23rd May 2017 were for free for the remainder of the competition.

This led to a highly skewed vote count as some voters took advantage of this ‘glitch’. It also resulted in 97 babies making the TOP 100 in error as a result of the CELL C ‘technical glitch’.

This resulted in tremendous damage to our brand and our reputation as you would have seen and read.

In our efforts to resolve this matter, we had to correspond with CELL C via Clickatell. Despite our numerous communications, there have been unnecessary delays, including CELL C not meeting their own deadlines.

DUE TO THIS ‘GLITCH’, THE FOLLOWING WAS REQUESTED FROM CELL C THROUGH CLICKATELL:

#1
We requested that CELL C fully refund all paid votes on all CELL C shortcodes as CELL C voters had an unfair disadvantage of making it to the TOP 100 due to the ‘technical glitch’. All three SMS Shortcodes for the myMOSTbeautiful.com BABY contest worked from 24th April 2017 to 23rd May 2017 and the two SMS Shortcode brackets 36001 and 38002 worked for the entire duration of the contest BUT all votes sent to SMS Shortcode 34056 after 23 May 2017 were not charged for and therefor counts as zero votes towards the contest.
myMOSTbeautiful.com will not accept our percentage of revenue of ALL and ANY CELL C votes as we feel we cannot take this when clearly CELL C voters were unfairly disadvantaged.
OUTCOME OF THIS REQUEST: CELL C has declined our request submitted through Clickatell to refund all CELL C paid votes.

#2
We requested that CELL C contribute to the 25 charities who now as a result of this ‘technical glitch’ will no longer receive the full pledged amount of donations we had communicated to them. However, we remain committed to donating to all 25 charities.
OUTCOME OF THIS REQUEST: CELL C has declined our request submitted through Clickatell to contribute to the above charity donations.

#3
We requested that CELL C refund myMOSTbeautiful.com all revenues lost as a result of the ‘technical glitch’ which we have incurred and suffered as a result of this.
OUTCOME OF THIS REQUEST: CELL C has offered Clickatell a small portion of the total lost revenue incurred by ourselves. We in turn have declined this from Clickatell for the same reason stated in point 1 above: myMOSTbeautiful.com have decided that we will not accept our percentage revenue share of ALL and ANY CELL C votes on the network as we feel we cannot take this revenue when clearly CELL C voters were disadvantaged.

#4
We requested that in lieu of our significant brand damage that CELL C sponsor the next 2 competitions in the spirit of goodwill.
OUTCOME OF THIS REQUEST: CELL C has declined our request submitted through Clickatell

#5
We requested that CELL C pay for a PR campaign to assist with our brand damage.
OUTCOME OF THIS REQUEST: CELL C has declined our request submitted through Clickatell

#6
myMOSTbeautiful.com paid Clickatell for each and every vote including free votes through credits purchased on their platform. We have requested a refund of the cost spent on the Clickatell platform for credits spent on free votes.
OUTCOME OF THIS REQUEST: CELL C has declined our request submitted through Clickatell

So as one can see from the above, CELL C has not accepted responsibility as they have continuously referred to their agreement with Clickatell. Furthermore they believe that they have no obligation to their network subscribers.

We can only apologise again for these unfortunate circumstances which were beyond our control.
We have declined all revenue (on Monday, 31 July 2017 at 17h34) in respect of the paid votes on the CELL C network during the contest in order for them to refund you in full.
As our request to CELL C for a refund for all unfairly disadvantaged voters has been declined, we suggest that you contact CELL C directly for any queries.
CELL C customer service: 084 140  OR CELL C Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CellC.SouthAfrica

NEXT STEPS TOWARDS WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT:
Taking all of this into consideration, and having only received CELL C’s response via Clickatell on Friday, 28 July 2017 at 6.24pm, we can now confirm our next steps with announcing the TOP 10 and the winner of the myMOSTbeautiful.com 2017 BABY competition.

We have conducted a recount of all votes from 24 April 2017 to 19 June 2017. CELL C votes cast to the 34056 shortcode/voting line after the CELL C ‘technical glitch’, i.e. from 23 May 2017, will be counted as zero (0) votes as it was at a cost of zero Rand. It is stated clearly in our T’s and C’s that no free SMSes will be eligible in our contest.

We have already verified the new TOP 100 votes and will announce them today – Monday, 31 July 2017.
The new TOP 100 will receive a R500 Takealot voucher, if they haven’t received one already.
We require certain documentation from the TOP 50 babies to verify their entry.
Please note that there will be NO VOTING towards the new TOP 50 babies.
We will use vote count from 11am 24 April 2017 to noon 19 June 2017, including the judges’ 20% input vote to determine the TOP 10 and the winning baby.
The winners will be announced at noon on Thursday, 3 August 2017.