Lottery calls first glitch of the new year 'minor'
The new year brought another glitch to the Tennessee lottery, this time with a miscounting Web site clock.
The clock is supposed to show the number of days until the Jan. 22 grand prize drawing for the "Million $ Madness" game.
Instead, as the new year dawned, the clock began showing the wrong number of days.
It was showing 86 days when James Hawkins logged on to the Web site about 5:30 p.m. New Year's Day.
Although the clock showed 86 days, the correct date of the grand prize drawing was displayed directly under the clock.
"I sent them a courtesy e-mail to let them know there was an apparent glitch," Hawkins said.
Hawkins said he noticed the error when he checked the Web site to see whether the lottery had posted any information about lottery profits in light of the legislature's interest in how to spend the surplus.
"I think this is pretty minor," Hawkins said. "It was in place for less than 24 hours, and I don't think it caused any consumer issues."
Kym Gerlock, spokeswoman for the lottery, said when the year switched to 2008, the clock, which is a Flash animation, tried to count down to Feb. 22 instead of Jan. 22.
"The problem was corrected early this morning, so for one day, the countdown clock would have been displaying more days than there actually are until the drawing," Gerlock said.
She said the home page of the Web site is the only place the clock is featured. All other lottery materials show the correct Jan. 22 drawing date.
Million $ Madness is a raffle-style game with a limited number of tickets sold. Four winners will get $1 million each. There also will be 10 $10,000 prizes and 500 $100 prizes.
Last September, Hawkins reported a misprint on Lotto 5, Cash 3 and Cash 4 tickets that showed the Powerball jackpot as $29 million instead of $15 million.
The lottery suffered a major glitch in the summer when the random-number generating computers malfunctioned, rendering them incapable of drawing repeating digits in the Cash 3 and Cash 4 games. The problem wasn't discovered for several weeks.