Coca-Cola Axes Offensive Advert

Coca-Cola has admitted that it got it wrong when it used the word ‘psychos’ in an advertising campaign for a new soft drink. Complaints from ‘see me’, the Scottish mental health anti-stigma campaign and supporters of Stigma Stop Watch have resulted in the ad being withdrawn from TV, billboards and newspapers as of today, 24th July 2006.

In a statement, Coca-Cola said: “Coca-Cola GB apologises for any offence caused by our current Coca-Cola Zero advertising campaign. The insights used in the advertising build on everyday insights most people can relate to; are tongue-in-cheek and designed to be humorous and appeal to our target audience.  It was never our intention to offend people.  Mental health is a sensitive issue and we appreciate that this advertising execution may offend some people.  

 “As such, we are working to remove this execution from any future Coca-Cola Zero advertising campaign.”

 Linda Dunion, Campaign Director of ‘see me’ said: “I welcome Coca-Cola’s decision to remove the ad which we complained about.  We are pleased that they accept that it may be offensive.  Hopefully Coca-Cola will join others in advertising and the media who seek advice from ‘see me’ about the use of words and images associated with mental ill-health”.