Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/09/14/starbucks_lawsuit/

Starbucks hit with big bucks lawsuit

Woman demands $114m over cancelled free drink promo

By Lester Haines

Posted in Media, 14th September 2006 13:25 GMT

A US Starbucks customer has hit the company with a $114m lawsuit because the company refused to redeem a free drinks voucher, the BBC reports.

The litigious New York woman tried to take advantage of an email offer the coffee monolith had made to employees in the south-east of the US of A, in which the company rather foolishly invited recipients to "forward it to family and friends". Pretty quickly, the email reached around one million Americans and, when Starbucks "realised how many people were coming in for their free drink, it rescinded the offer".

As is the local custom, the scorned customer quickly contacted a lawyer who came up with the figure of $114m which apparently "equals the cost of drinks for all those turned away when the company decided to cancel its offer".

Starbuck's, meanwhile, has countered that the cancellation was because the offer "had been redistributed beyond its original intent". Legal experts agree, saying the suit has little chance of succeeding. ®

Bootnote

Yes, we know: Starbucks should bear in mind the legendary McDonald's hot coffee judgment, as the Beeb rightly points out. Does anyone know what happened to the poodle/microwave case where the owner of said dog sued the manufacturer because the instructions did not contain the phrase: "Do not use this oven to dry poodles"?