Outrage over that Coca-cola commercial

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Thursday, February 6, 2014


“O beutiful for spacious skies/ For amber waves of grain/ For purple mountain majesties/ Above the fruited plain/ America! America!.”
--From “America the Beautiful”

TWO THINGS that make Coca Cola's Super Bowl ad "It's Beautiful" stand out:-- It features Filipino as one of eight languages besides English in Coke's version of "America the Beautiful" (the line was "sa ibabaw ng mga prutas" [above the fruited plain]);

-- It has set off outrage on Twitter from people who say America is one nation and the multi-lingual version is divisive.

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The idea is called by some as "elegant, simple and touching," reflecting the "melting pot environment" that has made America a "diverse superpower." Remember Coke's "Buy the World a Coke," the 1971 TV jingle that morphed into the pop hit "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing"?

Same concept in "It's Beautiful": inclusion and diversity, which Atlanta TV news anchor Brenda Woods says are America's strengths. People of different races then singing the "Hilltop" ad; children now singing in different languages "America the Beautiful."

Why uproar and rage in 2014, not rejoicing and praise three decades ago? Why the quick upsurge of intolerance that shows the face of America that's ugly?

Mean, wrong

Social media enables people to form opinion without much thought and on impulse and in anonymity to hurl slime and hate.

In selling, partly by internet, loads and loads of "liquid candy" to millions of people all over the world, Coke must be aware how some users of new media can be wrong and mean.

(paseares@gmail.com)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on February 07, 2014.

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