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Long Live Ligers
April 9, 2012 1:54 PM   Subscribe

"It fits with what we would expect as a result of the rapid change in Arctic habitat." The stuff of science fiction is becoming increasingly the stuff of science fact. And now, it seems, you can crack open a white Coke (if you can stomach the campaign) and watch it all from the comfort of your couch.

See also: recent discussion of polar bear health on MeFi Polar bear population increasing?
posted by huckhound (40 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
It makes sense but it's still a little odd to see.
posted by aplsek88 at 2:02 PM on April 9, 2012


I think putting "science" next to anything written by Delingpole cheapens the word. And "fiction" doesn't work either, because generally for a writer to be credited with writing fiction, one must first establish that he can distinguish what constitutes a fact.
posted by oneironaut at 2:08 PM on April 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


I'm not sure I understand why that blogger has so much hate for coke. He's mad that they are only giving 2 million to the cause? I'm wondering if that is more or less of a percentage of income compared to what he's donating.
posted by HuronBob at 2:13 PM on April 9, 2012


I'm not sure I understand why that blogger has so much hate for coke. He's mad that they are only giving 2 million to the cause?

I believe he's mad that The Coca-Cola Company is spending orders of magnitude more time, money, effort and resources marketing itself as pro-polar bear than it is actually doing anything to help polar bears or the environment of the planet on which they and the rest of us live

That that the 1.4 billion polar-bear white cans they're manufacturing are equivalent to one ton of aluminum per polar bear on earth might perhaps help to illustrate this point

Or maybe I'm wrong, and this will be the dawning of the age of global progress via mass consumerist symbolism
posted by crayz at 2:26 PM on April 9, 2012 [15 favorites]


As far as Coke goes:

a) They quit using the white cans several months ago because people confused them with Diet Coke.
b) That blogger apparently does not understand the concept of recycling. Nearly all of my aluminum ends up in my recycling bin.
posted by wierdo at 2:36 PM on April 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


I some how get the sense that the blogger in question is of the reflexively irate sort, and would be unlikely to be satisfied by any Coke did here, short of funneling every last dollar of their profit for the year into the Arctic.

I don't ever drink Coke, and this still turns me off.
posted by modernnomad at 2:40 PM on April 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


This whale.. was it white?
posted by Ahab at 2:42 PM on April 9, 2012 [30 favorites]


This whale.. was it white?
posted by Ahab at 10:42 PM on April 9 [+] [!]


Stop it!
posted by Jehan at 2:44 PM on April 9, 2012 [10 favorites]


That blogger apparently does not understand the concept of recycling. Nearly all of my aluminum ends up in my recycling bin.

You do understand that it still requires energy to process, right? Energy that is almost certainly from carbon-heavy source like coal or natural gas.
posted by mek at 2:44 PM on April 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


People and institutions that spend more money saying "hey look I'm giving money to X cause" then the money they are actually giving don't really give a shit about cause X.

I'm moderately surprised Coke isn't expecting Nunavut to be renamed Coca-Cola for a week for their largness.

Oh, hey exactly what % of profits is that anyways? Eh, about .005%.

wonder how much it cost for the redesigned can and ad marketing to follow it?
posted by edgeways at 2:45 PM on April 9, 2012


Not even two million dollars: two million dollars paid out over five years. $400,000 a year. Give till it hurts, guys. I mean, without your donation, the WWF might have to get by on their yearly operating budget... of over 100 million dollars.
posted by absalom at 2:49 PM on April 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


I some how get the sense that the blogger in question is of the reflexively irate sort, and would be unlikely to be satisfied by any Coke did here, short of funneling every last dollar of their profit for the year into the Arctic.

I fall in that camp as well. As a company that's actively doing stuff that is causing global warming and destroying supplies of potable water. Actually, I probably want the company to stop existing altogether, but I'll take what I can get.
posted by Jon_Evil at 2:50 PM on April 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


As the "irate blogger" rightfully points out, the total donation is less than the cost of one Superbowl ad.
posted by mek at 2:52 PM on April 9, 2012


Coca Cola Enterprises annual profit: $749 Million. Woohoo, .05%!

I see a syfy channel original movie GROLAR BEAR in the near future...
posted by nanojath at 3:09 PM on April 9, 2012


Coke even bragged in a press release that the change entails 1.4 BILLION CANS for just the four-month period of this season’s campaign. That’s about 70,000 cans for each polar bear on earth (using the current accepted low-end estimate of 20,000 polar bears with the high-end estimate being 25,000).

To put it another way, the amount of aluminum Coke will use to make those 1.4 billion cans (which weigh, I’m told, half an ounce each empty) comes out to roughly 21,000 tons. That’s ONE TON OF ALUMINUM for each and every polar bear on earth.
Holy shit.
posted by zarq at 3:09 PM on April 9, 2012


Hmm, my math differs from edgeways by a factor of ten...
posted by nanojath at 3:10 PM on April 9, 2012


Lesson learned, Coke: Stick to the ads with the attractive young people; don't give jack shit to polar bears. No one writes angry blog posts about the status quo.
posted by 0xFCAF at 3:20 PM on April 9, 2012


The important thing to realize here is that my odds of getting frisky with a mermaid are increasing substantially.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 3:26 PM on April 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Lesson learned, Coke: Stick to the ads with the attractive young people; don't give jack shit to polar bears. No one writes angry blog posts about the status quo.

Lesson learned MetaFilter: stick to threads about corporations acting like cartoon supervillans.

A rich man throwing some pennies out of his limo as his driver coasts through the red light is just too much nuance for the blue - maybe the man is speeding because his charitable penny-giving is so important to him. Far be it for us to take offense or question motives, that's just in bad taste

Let's enjoy these pennies
posted by crayz at 3:27 PM on April 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


To put it another way, the amount of aluminum Coke will use to make those 1.4 billion cans (which weigh, I’m told, half an ounce each empty) comes out to roughly 21,000 tons. That’s ONE TON OF ALUMINUM for each and every polar bear on earth.

The comparison to the cost of a single superbowl ad is what resonates with me. What is the significance of the number of cans they relabeled, or the amount of aluminum they used?

posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 3:27 PM on April 9, 2012


Forgot to close my tag.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 3:28 PM on April 9, 2012


Lesson learned, Coke: Stick to the ads with the attractive young people; don't give jack shit to polar bears. No one writes angry blog posts about the status quo.

Way back in the dark ages, I was in a focus group (demographic: anyone who would show up, mostly young beatniks/college students) where one of the very first of the Cola Bears adverts were previewed. The crowd loved it. When asked by the herder what the audience liked to see, an exuberant young man beside me bellowed: "WE WANT TO SEE MORE COMPUTER GRAPHICS!" At that time "CGI" was not yet a common word.
posted by ovvl at 4:11 PM on April 9, 2012


I think I'm confused. The link posted by nanojath says that Coke's net income in 2011 was $749 million, which is reported as a 20% increase in profits. The same site a year earlier reported that Coke's net income was $11.8 BILLION, which was reported as a 73% increase. Other seemingly reliable sources also think Coke has a history of net income in the billions.

Does anyone know how to explain the discrepancy here?

Incidentally, if Coke's profit is ~$12 billion, then $400,000 is ~0.003% of its profit. I spend more as a percentage of my income on chocolate every year.
posted by Jonathan Livengood at 4:15 PM on April 9, 2012


This reminds of how (PRODUCT)RED bought the domain “red.org” for $50K, and then couldn’t even bother to make use of it.
posted by davel at 4:21 PM on April 9, 2012


Does anyone know how to explain the discrepancy here?

Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO): $11.8 billion net income
Coca-Cola Enterprises (NYSE: CCE): $749 net income
The company operates a franchised distribution system dating from 1889 where The Coca-Cola Company only produces syrup concentrate which is then sold to various bottlers throughout the world who hold an exclusive territory. The Coca-Cola Company owns its anchor bottler in North America, Coca-Cola Refreshments.
Anyway yes, ~0.003% perhaps overestimates the true scale, given that the $11.8 billion number doesn't include all the profits made at dependent subsidiary bottlers

But, in the most positive possible light, this is like a family who has enough leftover money to add $100,000 a year to their savings account diverting about $3.30 to a polar bear fund, and then spending another $10,000 on painting their McMansion snowy white and putting out a giant 'WE SAVE POLAR BEARS' lawn sign out for a few months
posted by crayz at 4:32 PM on April 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


Coca-Cola Enterprises is a bottling and distribution company which works for, but is separate from, the Coca-Cola Company. It's apparently what is called an anchor bottler.
posted by mek at 4:35 PM on April 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Could Climate Change create deadly, mutant sharks which kill us all?

Um, no. Unless they grow legs. And arms and hands with opposable thumbs. And lasers. Definitely lasers.

Otherwise... no.
posted by Splunge at 4:39 PM on April 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


This happening in the wild is beyond human control. However, Ligers (from the post title) are made exclusively from human breeding. Lions and tigers simply do not encounter one another in the wild. This creates all sorts of problems, and should not go on.
posted by MrGuilt at 5:31 PM on April 9, 2012


Thanks crayz and mek!
posted by Jonathan Livengood at 5:40 PM on April 9, 2012


Sometimes I sit here and think, "When was the last time something good happened?"
posted by tumid dahlia at 5:54 PM on April 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


Coca-Cola Enterprises is a bottling and distribution company which works for, but is separate from, the Coca-Cola Company.

The carbonated sugar water industry is fucking arcane. In other news, everyone is fat and has diabetes.
posted by nanojath at 7:30 PM on April 9, 2012


Obligatory KillerCoke link. List of crimes by country, might start with Colombia.
For every polar bear they save they kill at least 3 union activists.
posted by yoHighness at 8:12 PM on April 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


tumid dahlia: "Sometimes I sit here and think, "When was the last time something good happened?""

I don't know about you, but I had two good things happen tonight. And no, it's none of your beeswax.
posted by Splunge at 9:01 PM on April 9, 2012


Oh and:

Ligers and tigons and sharks! Oh my!
posted by Splunge at 9:01 PM on April 9, 2012


Sharks don't need legs, we need fins. The ocean is rising. It's gonna be a shark's world.
posted by Goofyy at 1:15 AM on April 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


the dawning of the age of global progress via mass consumerist symbolism

like those deformed kids on facebook getting $1 every time someone shares the gruesome image, i'm still counting the dough that rolled in from when bill gates was paying me to forward emails.
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 7:41 AM on April 10, 2012


1. Coca Cola could certainly donate more.

2. It is hard to imagine Coke donating so much money to a single good cause that wouldn't draw "but you have so much more than that!" criticisms.

3. Coke isn't a known large direct cause of polar bear extinction; at least, not much more per dollar earned than you and I are. (Hint: coca leaves don't grow up there.)

4. Google cannot* convert the prices of Superbowl ads and total aluminum can usage into polar bear lives they would save.

5. * Cannot... or will not???

6. I suspect that there are more practical ways to encourage corporations to take climate change seriously, than to browbeat Coca Cola for daring to donate money conspicuously.
posted by IAmBroom at 9:44 AM on April 10, 2012


In related news: HEY, PEPSI, DON'T YOU EVEN THINK ABOUT TAKING ANY SOCIAL STANDS! YOU'LL RISK LOSING MARKET SHARE!
posted by IAmBroom at 9:56 AM on April 10, 2012


Hmm ... I don't think people are upset that Coke is donating a small amount of money. At least, not in isolation. The upset-ness comes from the combination of (1) Coke has a huge pile of money from which they are donating a pittance and (2) Coke is spending much more than they are donating on an ad campaign patting themselves on the back for donating that pittance.

If Coke donated $400,000 per year without saying anything about it, I would say, "That's nice that they are spending some small amount of their capital on a good project." I wouldn't think it was too remarkable because the amount is very small relative to what they have, but I wouldn't be upset about it either.

If Coke donated a much larger amount -- say $40,000,000 per year -- and also spent a smaller amount -- say $1,000,000 per year -- to advertise their contribution, I also wouldn't be upset. It might make me suspect that they have an underlying profit motive. I would probably suppose that they are gaining a whole lot more that $41 million in good will and product loyalty. But I wouldn't think they were doing something wrong. (I don't have any problem with companies seeking profit.)

My objection to their action is the small donation combined with the comparatively large spending to advertise their donation as if the donation were enormous. That is, I think, textbook douchebaggery.
posted by Jonathan Livengood at 12:02 PM on April 10, 2012


I'm not sure I understand why that blogger has so much hate for [Coca-Cola Logo].

Maybe he's old enough to remember how Coke tasted before it became new and improved.
posted by Twang at 2:48 PM on April 10, 2012


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