Samsung spin on washing machine recall given a Shonky Award

Consumer advocacy group CHOICE has bestowed an infamous Shonky Award on Samsung for its failure to advertise the mass recall of over 144,000 of its dodgy top loader washing machines on TV.

Samsung’ s Shonky follows new research from CHOICE which found 47% of consumers expect to see information about product safety recalls in TV advertisements – same as the proportion who expect to see this information on manufacturers’ websites.1

“These faulty top loader washing machines have caused more than 224 incidents, including 76 fires, and there are still around 58,000 potential fire hazards in homes across Australia,”says CHOICE Chief Executive Alan Kirkland.


“Samsung said they did not need to advertise on TV to alert consumers to the danger – we disagree. We think it is time for Samsung to end the spin cycle and advertise on television to make sure they reach as many households as possible.”

Earlier this year, CHOICE dramatically crushed two Samsung washing machines to propel the potential hazard on to the nation’s TV screens. New data shows 60% of Australians expect to see product safety recall information on TV news.

“In the month following the crushing for the TV cameras, 11,481 machines were remedied – a figure four times the previous monthly average,” says Mr Kirkland.

In Samsung’s latest statement to CHOICE they have again refused to advertise on TV,instead claiming:

Samsung’s efforts have been focused on the most effective means of raising customer awareness. In our experience, targeted and coordinated advertising efforts have generated a greater response from customers affected by the recall than mass media advertising.

“We think Samsung should be using every available platform and avenue to raise awareness of the 58,000 faulty machines that remain in Australian homes,” Mr Kirkland says.

“That’s why today we’re providing a television advertisement to the national TV news stations to give Samsung a helping hand in warning consumers about the fire risk their washing machines present.

“All Australians can get behind the campaign to at, with money raised going to buy media to promote the warning this multi-billion dollar company doesn’twant you to see on your TV screens.

“We think the business responsible for putting the dodgy products on the market should be doing all it can to protect the public following their failure. Recalls should not be about notices that look more like polished marketing collateral than a serious public warning.

“We believe the risks to consumers should be put well above the risks to a company’s reputation or bottom line.”

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