EXPRESSIONS OF CONCERN FROM THE HOLIDAYS — 7 UP AD

By: American Decency Staff

(Date Unknown) The following person expresses her concerns very well regarding the indecent nature of 7 UP television ads run during the holiday season. I urge you to contact 7 UP. Let’s stand with this caring mother in expressing our concern. Thanks.

Dear Bill, Thanks for all you continue to do to improve the decency of advertising and programming on our airwaves and networks. I was watching a “bowl” football game with our extended family over the holidays when a new 7-UP ad came on.  We had the sound turned down so that we could chat during commercials, but everyone’s eyes became glued to the screen when the familiar spokesman came walking toward the camera up a public street, stripping off his clothes, one piece at a time.  He turned his back to the camera and pulled down his pants, talking over his shoulder the whole time.  The crowd around him reacted positively to his naked torso and nearly naked lower half.  I thought he looked nasty standing there with his pants around his ankles. Then, while the camera stayed just out of range, he also supposedly removed his underwear, to the mixed reaction of the men and women in the crowd before him. All of us were shocked and disgusted by this commercial.  We don’t have any idea what stripping publicly has to do with 7-up!  I wrote a letter to my friends and relatives, which I excerpt below: ********************** “…I thought their most recent ad was the most offensive yet and they seem very proud of themselves for producing such a raunchy ad.  Write and tell them otherwise.  Someone is letting the filthy-minded run this product into the ground. ACTION ADDRESSES: http://www.7up.com/ The website shows how low they are willing to sink. write to: consumer_affairs@dpsu.com call:  800-696-5891 ************************ Here is the letter I sent to 7-UP: Dear 7-UP, We’ve watched with alarm as 7-UP has gotten more and more raunchy with its advertising. Your latest effort, where the man strips off his clothes as he walks down a crowded street, supposedly also removing his briefs in front of other people, is offensive to the extreme. Do you not realize that FAMILIES with young impressionable children are watching television together?  You exposed my little girls to a filthy demonstration of a man exposing himself!  Their reaction?  “Oh, GROSS!”  Then, “Why’d the man DO that? He was NASTY!” We do not think your racy advertising is funny or appealing.  We do not think “stripping” or “nice package” is appropriate for family television.  We did not like the “up yours” campaign either.  Your latest attempt to get attention is the worst yet.  In fact, we’ve made a vow to discontinue buying 7-UP and related products until further notice. Leave the raunchy advertising to the beer companies. Sex should not be used to sell soft drinks, especially not to my family. Sincerely, L.S. (address removed) ************************ Here is 7-UP’s LAME response: Thank you for contacting us about the 7 UP First Thing television commercial, which is part of our 2002 advertising campaign. We are always  interested in hearing from our consumers. We regret that you found First Thing offensive, because that certainly  was not our intent. The First Thing commercial and the rest of our 2002 campaign is a continuation of the highly successful and humor-based “Make 7 UP Yours” advertising that began in late 1999. All 7 UP commercials appearing on television have been cleared by the networks for airing and are being shown on age-appropriate programming. Your comments about First Thing will be taken into consideration when we evaluate current 7 UP advertising and when we develop future campaigns. Thank you again for sharing your views with us. Consumer Relations *************** I immediately thought of you when I saw this ad, because I knew it fit the guidelines for the sort of advertising we need to discourage as a group.  I do not know which network that bowl game was on, but I guess I should have written to them, too.  If they “approved” the advertising and suggested a time-slot to air it, they are just as culpable, right?  I sent one more comment to 7-UP after I read their LAME reply: “The advertising was aired during the DAYTIME when families were likely to be watching television together.  My kids want to be near their father and he was watching the football game when your nasty ad came on.  The man’s actions, and the reactions of those he was facing, offended us all. Save the potty humor for your website and start airing cleaner ads.  Then you won’t have to worry whether children are watching the television or not! … L.S.


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