Groupon Pulls Controversial Ads, Apologizes Again

    February 11, 2011
    Chris Crum

On Super Bowl Sunday, Groupon began running some ads that that some people found offensive. After the widespread outcries, Groupon CEO Andrew Mason posted an apology/explanation on the company’s blog. 

Still, talk of the ads has hardly died down. Conan O’Brien has been ripping into them all week long. 

Mason posted a follow-up post about the ads, saying that they are pulling them, and will go with something less controversial. 

"We hate that we offended people, and we’re very sorry that we did – it’s the last thing we wanted," said Mason. "We’ve listened to your feedback, and since we don’t see the point in continuing to anger people, we’re pulling the ads (a few may run again tomorrow – pulling ads immediately is sometimes impossible). We will run something less polarizing instead. We thought we were poking fun at ourselves, but clearly the execution was off and the joke didn’t come through. I personally take responsibility; although we worked with a professional ad agency, in the end, it was my decision to run the ads."

"To those who were offended, I feel terrible that we made you feel bad," he added. "While we’ve always been a little quirky, we certainly aren’t trying to be the kind of company that builds its brand on creating controversy – we think the quality of our product is a much stronger message."

Mason also thanked the charities and others who have spoken up on Groupon’s behalf for their support. It is important to note, that Groupon has had a lot of supporters through this whole thing, and the company has a history deeply rooted in charitable activity.

Did you find Groupon’s ads offensive? Let us know


Chris Crum
Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.