Vistaprint Continues to Face Backlash After Hateful Pamphlets Sent to Same-sex Couple

Vistaprint remains in the spotlight this week as reports from two weeks ago emerged that the company provided a same-sex couple hateful pamphlets in their wedding order. The company is a printing company that many users utilize for their wedding and invitation materials, but the company also offers marketing materials, signs, posters, digital marketing, business cards and design services.

The company is working to compete with companies that offer advanced video material to their consumers, including video business cards and video mailers. But recent complaints may cause the company to focus on their reputation in the industry.

Vistaprint is being sued by the couple that claims they received hate pamphlets instead of the wedding programs they ordered. Vistaprint neither denied nor verified the claim, but instead said: “how incredibly saddened we are to hear this story.”

The lengthy statement was willed with promises to investigate the incident.

The male couple claims that they ordered 100 wedding programs that they opened the night before their wedding. What they found inside of the package was 80 copies of “Understanding Temptation: Fight the good fight of the faith.”

The pamphlets all contained anti-gay messages and assert that the couple’s relationship is Satan’s temptation.

Lawyers for the couple claim that the pamphlets also contain a threat to attack the couple.

The couple was supposed to receive wedding programs which contained the lyrics to the song “Treasure.”

Vistaprint has been forced to do severe damage control following the incident, with the company’s CEOs posting a response online, too. The statement claims that the executives are sorry they let their customer down and also claims the company never discriminates and celebrates diversity.

“We have begun a complete investigation to determine how and why the couple received these materials. What we have learned to date is that materials that were intended to be printed for one customer were incorrectly sent to this couple by a 3rd party fulfiller. We, and our partner, are committed to understanding how and why this happened. If we determine that any individual played a deliberate role in this mix up, we will take strong action,” writes CEO Trynka Shineman and Robert Keane.

Vistaprint is part of Cimpress N.V. (CMPR), a company that employs 10,000 people and has over $2 billion in revenue annually.

Cimpress’ stock didn’t suffer from the incident, instead rising 19% on Thursday as the company’s earnings report was released. The company’s revenue rose to $762 million, beating expectations of $692.4 million.

Vistaprint is also undergoing a restructuring program which will include the introduction of new products. The restructuring charge was far less than expected, at $11.5 million. The reorganization is expected to save the company $20 million to $22 million this year.

There are no reports that the restructuring was behind the hateful pamphlets being sent to the couple. The company’s restructuring includes the reduction of workers and the streamlining of functions inside of the company. Vistaprint wanted to increase their speed of execution within the company, which may be why a third-party was used for the printing process.

Melissa Thompson
Melissa Thompson writes about a wide range of topics, revealing interesting things we didn't know before. She is a freelance USA Today producer, and a Technorati contributor.