Cyanogen unhappy with the Ladies Only invite competition of OnePlus – UPDATE: OnePlus pull competition

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Has OnePlus One reached a new low in terms of their notorious invite system? By now, you are probably well aware of OnePlus and their flagship killer phone, the ‘One’. You are probably also aware of the terrible invite system used. If you are not then in short you simply cannot purchase the ‘One’. Instead you have to be given an invite before you can buy. Typically there are only two methods to obtaining an invite. The first is simple, receive an invite from a friend.

The second route is far more controversial and relies on potential customers to ‘win’ an invite. OnePlus have already attracted attention with their previous invite competition attempts. The worse (until now) asking users to film themselves destroying their current phone. Users who destroy their phone in the most novel way will win the invite.

Today it seems OnePlus may have gone a step too far. Literally only hours ago OnePlus launched a ‘Ladies Only‘ competition asking women to post pictures of themselves while displaying the OnePlus logo. The rules suggest the logo should be on either a piece of paper or the user’s hands or face.

oneplus_ladies_first_logo

The post rules state “no nudity please” which adds to the notion that OnePlus are well aware of where this type of competition could lead. To further add insult the competition begins with an extremely ominous intro

In true gentlemen fashion and because chivalry is not dead, we are giving the lovely ladies of OnePlus a chance to skip the invite line and introduce themselves to us

If you are interested than here are the competition rules.

Ladies (and only ladies, sorry guys, ladies first), the rules are simple:

1. Draw the OnePlus logo on a piece of paper or on your hand/face/wherever (so we know it’s really you)
2. Take a photo of yourself with the OnePlus logo clearly visible
3. Post the photo in this thread

The 50 most well-liked ladies will receive an invite and a Never Settle t-shirt. Additionally, we will be giving out another 100 invites at random to any lady who participates in the contest. The contest begins today and ends on Friday. We will announce the winners on Monday.

Ladies, no nudity please.

So is this going too far? Should companies be using such obvious tactics as a marketing tool to avoid heavy marketing costs. After all, we (and no doubt other news agencies) will all be reporting this. So although the method works should a company who prides itself on a better user experience and products, be relying so heavily on finding new ways for users to degrade and demean themselves.

Cyanogen (the providers of the operating system running on the OnePlus One) seems to think so. Judging by their twitter account it seems they are starting to feel some of the heat. Cyanogen tweeted a brief message highlighting that they “value” their users and do not “support any contest that objectifies people“.

cm_repsonse_twitter

What makes this worse is the completion is for an invite. So winners (which are judged by the number of ‘likes’ their image receives) will only win the opportunity to buy the phone. At present the competition has only been live for a few hours and already has over 67 pages of comments and entries.

What do you think? Have OnePlus gone too far? This obviously generates awareness so do the end results justify the means? Should OnePlus strive for a higher moral compass?

I guess the big question is what would you do for a OnePlus invite?

Let us know your thoughts.

UPDATE

It seems the pressure (and backlash) has become to great for Oneplus as they have now pulled the competition completely. Now when the comp link is clicked on users simply are shown an error page (as shown below). There have so far been no further explanation or announcement as of yet but it is clear this really was one step too far.

oneplus_withdraws comp

Will OnePlus recover from this? What are your thoughts?

 

John Anon
A guy who has travelled too much and seen most of the world has to offer. Now just fascinated with technology with a specific focus on Android, custom mods and personalizing devices to represent us all better. When not playing with his phone or tablet can be found in the kitchen cooking up a storm.
  • 127wexfordroad

    They got lots of free publicity from it, so their plan worked.

  • Nooji

    For the 99% of the world who are not offended for a living (like Anita Sarkeesian) or enjoy being offended as a hobby (SRS), there is no problem here. OnePlus is raising brand awareness at virtually no cost. It’s a winning strategy.