Coca-Cola Pulls Homophobic Marketing Gimmick, Apologizes
Coca-Cola's "Share A Coke" marketing ploy got social media buzzing for all the wrong reasons over the weekend, as we reported Monday.
The memes inspired by Coke's gay gaffe gimmick has lead to the international behemoth pulling the "Share A Coke" personalization software and issuing an apology.
"We are aware that the Share a Coke promotion we are running in South Africa has generated an unintended outcome. We apologise for any offence caused. The Share a Coke programme was created to allow consumers to take the iconic “Coca-Cola” script and replace it with their name on the can. In South Africa, the digital version of the Share a Coke promotion did not properly limit the customisation to individuals’ names. We’ve taken down the site and are in the process of revising the digital tool immediately...As one of the world’s most inclusive brands, we value and celebrate diversity. We have long been a strong supporter of the LGBT community and have advocated for inclusion, equality and diversity through both our policies and practices. Again we apologise for any offense this has caused."
The statement might not be enough for a astoundingly LGBT-friendly (they have a 100 percent on the HRC corporate equality index) company to pull through its next big hurdle without further fracturing its relationship with gays. As a major sponsor of the Sochi Winter Olympics, Coca Cola has been a subject of gay boycotts long before the "Share A Coke" mistake ... and will likely be one long after. Just this week, Coke was axed from receiving an LGBT award due to its involvement with the Russian Olympics.
But for now, is this apology enough to get Coca-Cola back in our good gay graces?