Thursday, March 31, 2011

Diet Coke's Sexist 'Heart Health' Campaign

On Feb. 1, Diet Coke launched a massive ad campaign supporting The Heart Truth, a national initiative to embrace better heart health for women. The soda company is splashing ads on cans, bottles, print and webbie advertising to "raise awareness and funding."

A Coke spokeswoman comments, "We are dedicated to encouraging new generations of people to be active and become advocates for heart health."

Wait, Coke: Is that people or only women?

Statistics claim that more women than men die of heart attacks each year, but even the Women's Heart Foundation admits, "Heart disease doesn't discriminate. It is the leading killer of men and women."

And yet, when rival Pepsi dedicated its latest ad campaign around the female-centric Fashion Week, it was called out as a heinous insult to the female sex.

Believe it or not, women's rights advocates and the National Eating Disorder Assn. claimed PepsiCo.'s new cans insinuate that skinny women are more beautiful and confident!

The latter organization whined that the company is thoughtless and irresponsible." Oh, brother.

PepsiCo clarified that its Skinny Can is meant to communicate the idea of “getting the skinny” or inside scoop on fashion, style and design. It has absolutely nothing to do with the shape and size of a woman's figure.

So here's how it stacks up. Coke advocating for women-only is heralded. Pepsi playfully advocating for women is chauvinist. And any ad campaign that addresses men's concerns... oh, wait, that's right. A non-factor.