I’m not buying into all this outrage over the free money affair in Auckland at the weekend.
In case you’re not up to speed on this, essentially, a firm promoted a stunt in Aotea Square, saying there’d be free money falling out of the sky.
$100,000 of free money, and social media was used to encourage people to come and grab a share.
So people piled into their cars and made a beeline.
There’s a whiff of irony that a safety company should do something like this, when you think of the potential for something very unsafe. We don’t even have lolly scrambles at Santa parades any more – but let’s stick to the point.
Now the firm says there was real money and it was thrown into the crowd.
Whether there actually was $100,000 or not, I don’t know, but apparently most of what was sprayed around was actually vouchers, printed up to look a bit like $5 notes.
And the crowd went wild. Big scramble. People squashed in the melee. And then, fury when they realise they’ve come all that way for a voucher.
You’ve perhaps heard some of the reaction – totally over the top – people claiming they were exploited. It’s an insult to the poor. There are online petitions, demands for a police prosecution and on and on it goes.
I heard one woman moaning she’d spent 20 bucks on gas and money for parking and she wanted it back. You what?
Has anyone stopped, just for a minute, to think about this?
Say there really was $100,000 in cash. And say the crowd was, I dunno, a thousand?
So at the best, you might have been able to grab $100.
What person in their right mind – honestly – what person thinks they’re gonna come out of stunt like this, and go straight into Smith & Caughey’s for a spend-up?
Next thing we’ll have protests from everyone who bought a Lotto ticket this weekend, and isn’t a millionaire.
Do me a favour.
• Tim Dower is a broadcaster and radio show host, notably on Newstalk ZB.
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