LA Woman Sues Toyota for Scaring Her

A Los Angeles woman is suing Toyota for $10 million over a marketing campaign that she claims frightened her so much, she incorrectly believed she was being stalked. Filed Sept. 28 in Los Angeles Superior Court, the lawsuit states that Amber Duick had difficulty eating, sleeping and going to work during March and April of last year, after receiving e-mails for five days from a fictitious man called Sebastian Bowler, who said he was on the run from the law, knew her and where she lived, and was coming to her home to hide from the police.

The prank was actually part of a marketing effort executed by the Los Angeles division of the global marketing agency Saatchi & Saatchi. The campaign was created the campaign to promote the Toyota Matrix, a new model launched in 2008.

In a statement written on behalf of Toyota and Saatchi about the lawsuit, Toyota Spokesman Chad Harp said that Duick had voluntarily participated in the alleged prank, opting into the campaign emails before she began receiving them. Harp also said Toyota cannot discuss legal aspects of the case, but that marketing agencies like Saatchi & Saatchi are contin thinking of new and innovative ways to attract consumers for clients like Toyota.

Saatchi & Saatchi continues to work with Toyota, but this specific Matrix campaign ended last year. Courtesy of 

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