Re: Massively dodgy.
Yep. If you're giving a 50% discount voucher yourself, that's one thing. If you're giving it to someone who intends to profit from it's "sale" to their users, that's another entirely.
They may have larger marketing to attract customers but to do so at a loss seems ridiculous. The coupon *itself* is the marketing and if you wanted exposure, you could have paid for a full-page ad in a paper to distribute it. I'm sure that would be a lot cheaper than, say, giving a 60% discount voucher (in effect) to Groupon and it's "millions" of customers.
I've mentally blacklisted any company that does business with GroupOn without thinking first - it's just a stupid way to run a business. From cupcake shops that get flooded with thousands of orders that they could never fulfill, to hairdressers who are "forced" to give thousands of haircuts at a loss, I've yet to see a good success story for anyone other than the customer - or a company that's got a head on it's shoulders touching the site with a bargepole.
But, to be honest, I don't get why companies contract out positions to other companies that then do *EXACTLY* what the original company would have had to do AND make a profit on it, and that's quite a burgeoning business area too. Maybe I'm just thick.