Nick Richardson believes Pizza Hut took a stealth snapshot of him eating in one of their restaurant locations and used his likeness on takeout boxes.
The 39-year-old father from Redditch, Worcestershire, began receiving alerts from friends and family members about a month ago asking why his mug was being distributed on the chain's takeout boxes. He was wondering the same thing.
Richardson's friend sent a photo of the man on the pizza box, who was referred to as "Richard from London."
The friend said in the message "what are you doing on my Pizza box?" and I thought he was just winding me up. I didn't think much of it.
It wasn't just a coincidence.
Then I got another message from another friend - they didn't know each other - saying the same thing.
Eat your face out.(b/60/YouTube)
When his family was convinced that dad was secretly marauding around endorsing a random pizza joint, he confronted the shady Hut on their Facebook page. He was instructed to call them but it wasn't until an online post was discovered by the local press, that things heated up.
Richardson and the great pizza caper.(b/60/YouTube)
A Pizza Hut Delivery spokesperson claimed that the image was one of their own team members.
All the artwork imagery on our Pizza Hut boxes, including this picture, feature employees from our creative agency and all of them provided consent for their photos to be used.
We have not used any members of the public in this campaign and we can confirm that this photograph is not of Mr Richardson.
Richardson was not convinced by the half-baked assertion. The picture closely resembled his hair, beard, jewelry and clothing.
I think it's me, my mum thinks it's me, my friends think it's me and my brother thinks it's me. I can't see how it's not me.
Even the outline of the stubble is the same. It would be an enormous coincidence if it wasn't me.
I think it is me and it just makes me feel very weird. I was just out for dinner with my little boy, and the next thing I see this box. It's all very weird.
The restaurant refused to send Richardson the original image of "Richard from London," even though they initially offered to do so, "because it would be illegal due to copyright."
I don't see how that works because they have put it on pizza boxes. It all sounds a bit suspect to me.
We may all have our dopplegangers out there—in this case at a restaurant, but Richardson's not biting.
The Internet, however, doesn't see a likeness at all, based on the online photos of him.
There's usually an ulterior motive for persistence.