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Coke’s diversity ad sparks online racism storm

Like many other brands, Coca-Cola has run a series of ads to promote itself during the SuperBowl.

Coke celebrated diversity and America in its TV spots titled: America the Beautiful.

Watch the video here:

Coke showed Americans of different races and ethnicities singing the song in different languages, aside from English: Tagalog, Mandarin, Spanish, Hindi, Hebrew, Arabic, Keres and Senegalese-French.

Here are a few:

In Tagalog:

In Mandarin:

In Hindi:

Unfortunately, it looks like Coke’s good intentions have pulled up a storm of racist comments.

Its official Facebook page has been flooded with comments after the screening. While some supported the ad, there were many others that expressed displeasure – saying that the ad should be sung only in English.

While Coca-Cola could not be reached by Marketing at the time of publishing, the brand also released another behind the scenes video highlighting the struggle the country has in uniting its diverse groups, subtly encouraging viewers to celebrate it.

Also, Marketing spoke to several Americans on what they thought about the ad.

Publisher Soren Beaulieu said: “Frankly, I’m not surprised. America harbors both the extremes of bigotry/xenophobia and equality/egalitarianism, and that was reflected in the reactions to the ad: some found it profoundly un-American, others thought it represents everything our country stands for.”

“I liked that Coke was trying to celebrate the diversity of the United States of America, although I’m somewhat surprised that they didn’t anticipate some Americans would try and politicise it,” said Beaulieu.

University student Adrienne Spuzzillo told Marketing: “I don’t find the ad offensive at all. The U.S. was founded by immigrants who share multiple backgrounds, languages and cultures. This ad is showing that as America is changing, Coke is there for the “old” America and the “new” America.”

On my part, I think the ad is beautifully done. Good one, Coke.

 
Elizabeth Low
Deputy Editor
Marketing Magazine Singapore

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