LUU should stop giving out Amazon vouchers as prizes

Passed: March 2021 (18th)

What do you want? / Why do you want it?

LUU often offers Amazon vouchers as prizes for answering surveys or otherwise engaging with LUU. There are many ethical issues with Amazon as a company, including its offences in terms of workers rights and environmental impact. Perhaps most notably the Ethical Consumer has called for a general, global boycott of Amazon because of its extensive tax-avoidance. The fact that LUU essentially gives 'Amazon money' to students who engage with them through surveys is disappointing and suggests LUU supports its unethical practices. There should be a blanket ban on offering Amazon vouchers and other vouchers should be offered instead.

Expires: March 2024 (18th)

Submitted By: Holly Fiddes

Officer: Union Affairs

Area of Work: Campaigns

Updates

September 2021: In the last survey that the Marketing Team ran, they gave students the option to choose the incentive they wanted. The option for 'Amazon or Love2Shop Vouchers' was the overwhelming winner with 56.71% of the vote. This indicated that while Amazon vouchers appear to still be a good incentive to students, alternatives can be offered. Marketing will continue to survey student opinion on what option they would like.

May 2021: Since the policy passed, we have started – but not concluded – our process of gathering sentiment and mapping out the alternative ways we can incentivise student participation (in surveys and similar). We’re happy to share the information we have so far from one data collection and we are planning more research in this area:

  • Sample: 882 respondents

  • Data collection period: From the 31st March to the 10th April.

  • What is your opinion on Amazon as a company? On a scale where 0 is 'negative', 5 is 'neither negative nor positive' and 10 is 'positive', students gave an average rating of 5.9.

  • For future surveys, would you prefer an alternative prize to an Amazon voucher (of the same value)? Yes (53.15%) and No (46.85%)

We are still committed to working towards the policy but using Amazon vouchers has been highly effective in incentivising engagement with our surveys. Our addition of Love2Shop reflects our commitment to the policy but until we’ve thoroughly identified alternatives that create the same level of engagement, we won’t be able to move away yet. For example, the Sustainability Survey – which didn’t use Amazon vouchers – had lower levels of engagement than our regular surveys which did. That may be specific to that topic but it underlines we need to do more testing and gather more opinion before we can change completely.

March 2021: New Policy