Coke Controversy



Coca-Cola Super Bowl Commercial Sparks Controversy

(Image source: Coca-Cola)

If you tuned into the Super Bowl Sunday night — or at least the commercials — maybe you caught Coca-Cola's "It's Beautiful" ad.

Coca-Cola ad "America the Beautiful"

It featured the patriotic tune in a number of different languages and showed cultures from all around the world.

The ad even showed a gay family for the first time in Super Bowl commercial history. (Via NBC)

In a statement Coke's president of North American brands said, “‘It’s Beautiful’ is exactly what Coca-Cola is all about: celebrating the diversity that makes this country great and the fact that anyone can thrive here and be happy. We hope the ad gets people talking and thinking about what it means to be proud to be American.” (Via Coca-Cola)

But as TIME puts it, Coca-Cola’s “'It’s Beautiful' Super Bowl Ad Brings Out Some Ugly Americans."

And there was no shortage on Twitter. By mid-morning Monday, the trolls were still out, talking about the ad with America the Beautiful and #boycottcoke trending.

Just a few of the relatively less offensive tweets read, "@CocaColaCo Ur superbowl ad was offensive & need an apology. No need 4 other languages Only English #BoycottCoke" (Via Twitter / @WhichWhich1)

And there's this one from Miss Teen Missouri United States, "Soo I will no longer be drinking Coke products #America #speakEnglish" (Via Twitter / @MeganReneeKelly)

Oh, just a side note, English is not actually the official language of the U.S. — there isn't one. (Via

Now, it should be noted that a large amount of people did actually defend the ad. Including media outlets...

With headlines like this. (Via Deadspin)

And The Huffington Post points out, grabbing attention is the whole point of an ad — so Coke's kind of winning. "While the ad surely makes a statement about the multilingual nature of America, the end goal is, of course, publicity. Even if some of what's being said is negative, the company still achieved their objective. The whole purpose of the ad was to get people talking about Coca-Cola -- in any language."

This comes just days after a racial backlash sparked from this Cheerio's ad featuring an inter-racial family. (Via Cheerios)

This one seriously almost blew the top off the Twittersphere. An MSNBC employee was even fired over a tweet about the commercial. (Via The Wall Street Journal) Coke's minute-long ad cost an estimated $8-million dollars according to The Washington Post.


What is your opinion on the controversy?

Do you like the ad?

Can you think of any other ads that sparked controversy?  


Anonymous said…
Hy, it´s Laura´s a shame!! In my opinion it´s a beautiful advert...and this sort os things always remain me that few american people thinks that they are the world´s belly button.
Anonymous said…
Historia Graham
It's Hilde.
In my opinión it is a senseless controversy.
Lately Mercedes had had troubles by an adverment which a car kill Hitler
when hi was a child
See you
Montse said…
Hi Graham. I like the ad.
I think that the big brands use the controversy to keep on the crest of a weave.
I remember some controversial ads of "United Colors of Benneton" especially one with a AIDS sick person.
Graham said…

I agree. I think the ad is trying to show that the US is a world of people within one nation.

... and this sort of thing always reminds me that a few / some American people thinks that they are the world´s belly button.

I'm not sure that we say that in English. I'd say the centre of the universe.

Graham said…
Hi Hilde,

I've just seen the advert. I don't understand the fuss.

Historia Graham ??? Do you mean hysteria?
It's Hilde.

Mercedes recently had trouble because of an advertisement in which a car kills Hitler when he was a child.
Graham said…
Hi Montse,

I think that (the) big brands use controversy to keep on the crest of a wave.
I remember some controversial ads of "United Colors of Benneton" especially one with a person sick with / suffering from AIDS.

I think Benetton went out of their way to create as much controversy as possible.

Instead of getting upset, people should have just ignored the ads and so, starve them of the oxygen of publicity.

See you in the morning.

luciti said…

I've read and listened to this post.
I don't like coca-cola....

I think Americans need to understand the diversity of their country , but being its most sacred hymn I can understand the scandal
Graham said…

I bet you that those that called for a boycott of Coca-Cola then are still drinking it now.
Anonymous said…
Hi Graham:
I saw the video, My opinion is that the coca-cola is the most important brand of Americans, they created a brand very importat for ours Live and for the story, it is a photo that it express funny... today we had many problems whit the coca-cola's fabric... but people nevera forgot this creation
Buy, ser you tomorrow:-)
Graham said…
Hi Natalia,

I quite liked this Coca-Cola advert. For me, it's surprising how people could get upset by it.

I have watched the video. My opinion is that coca-cola is the most important, American brand. They created a brand which is very important for our lives and for history. It is an image that transmits fun...

Today we have many problems with the coca-cola factory in Spain ... but people never forget this creation. (not sure what you mean here)

Read through your comments and check for mistakes before sending it. I am sure you can avoid some mistakes that you make.