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Coke paints the Himalayas red.
August 19, 2002 1:25 AM   Subscribe

Coke paints the Himalayas red. Will this finally boost soft drink sales in the region?
posted by popkick (26 comments total)

 
This is a bloody outrage! Of all the tactless, irresponsible ways to market a cheap product! Why, I think that--

...Hmm. I could go for a Coke, right about now...
posted by Down10 at 2:12 AM on August 19, 2002


This is disgusting, what next?........the moon!
posted by JonnyX at 3:11 AM on August 19, 2002


While Coke & Pepsi fight to gain the market share, Thums Up reigns supreme (at least in key markets like Mumbai).
posted by riffola at 3:14 AM on August 19, 2002


I'm very impressed with the finger pointing: "It wasn't us, it was our franchise" "Gee, we didn't do it, we hired some painters and they did it!" Uh hunh. Whatever.
posted by jburka at 4:14 AM on August 19, 2002


yes, but the money still goes here

This won't shock anyone who's been to India - all available rocks by major Indian roads have been plastered with hand painted advertising for years. The best examples are Indian road safety slogans which have long kept many a traveller entertained.
posted by gravelshoes at 4:29 AM on August 19, 2002


Removing the advertisements could cause further ecological damage because it would require many litres of paint remover or thinner.

PRESS RELEASE

Himalayan Mainland Island -- August 19, 2322: Archaeologists today discovered two large artifacts near the base of HMI, nearly 3000 feet below sea level. The artifacts are being uplifted through the LOE to the L4 citybase, but a determination of their origin has already been made: The fabled Coke and Pepsi advertisements that spurred the continental Asian region into limited nuclear exchange have been found. Labeled "The Heat War", the limited nuclear exchange is what lead analysts fear brought us to the edge of annihilation when the polar ice caps melted under the pressure of significant greenhouse gas release.

Removed from the ocean floor, the large rocks were situated along what appears to be an old walking path for ancient Himalayan mountain climbers. The discovery of the rocks is credited to Kimmeth Stranger, a 10 year old student studying outlying rock formations from the Pramannath Dome. She was on a field trip with her 4th grade class when she stopped for her 5 times daily ritual, and realized that she had rolled out her plastic rug on one of the rocks.

MicroCoke MegaCorp, the rightful owner of both rocks, has declined to analyze the rocks themselves, instead handing the responsibility over to the University at L4.

About MicroCoke MegaCorp

In 2024, Microsoft Inc, a "computer software" company, purchased Coke Inc, a "soft drink" company. Nearly 30 years later, the combined assets of both companies allowed them to buy up most competition in the "soft drink" market, even with international outcry against monopolization. The advent of Nano-injection systems for all biological intake caused a severe realignment of company goals. In 2230, MicroCoke MegaCorp diversified its holdings once again, and is now the benign grandfather corporation we all know of it today.
posted by thanotopsis at 5:10 AM on August 19, 2002


In other parts of the Himalayas, reports began to emerge of the 7-Up Guy being chased by a family of Yeti...
posted by Smart Dalek at 5:35 AM on August 19, 2002


I think the soda company PR departments should just deny any knowledge and blame it on aliens bored with designing crop circles.
posted by ZachsMind at 6:42 AM on August 19, 2002


This really is kind of disgusting. In San Pedro Sula, Honduras (second largest city) you can never get lost so long as you can see the giant "Coca-Cola" sign on the side of a mountain. It's pretty much embraced like a landmark (not unlike other 'tourist destinations' such as Budweiser Brewery Plants and, oh, let's just Milhouse's Dad's Cracker Factory). This is very common in many non first-world countries.

This paragraph struck me as odd though:

"It was not done by the franchisees, but contracted out to painters and [the franchisees] deducted the money from the painters remuneration when they found out it had been done because it is not our policy," he said.

I would love to see that contract: "We will pay Ganesh's Goopy Paint Service 456,867,595,039 Rupees to advertise for us, the Coca-Cola Franchisees. Sign here X________"

Good thing they didn't go out and burn Coke logos onto the backs of babies or something. Then we'd get "Coke doesn't endorse the burning of little children for the advertisement of its product. We are withholding 10% of the payment of contract with the advertising company for not following guidelines. Too bad they still get 411,180,835,535 Rupees."
posted by Ufez Jones at 7:26 AM on August 19, 2002


Here (scroll down) is a picture (allbeit not a great one, but the only one I could find in about 5 minutes of searching) of the sign in San Pedro Sula I was talking about. Turns out there's one in Tegucigulpa also:
"Two cities in Honduras - San Pedro Sula and Tegucigalpa - have Coca-Cola signs larger than the Hollywood sign in California. "

That factoid found on this page containing many facts about Coca Cola and it's international fame.
posted by Ufez Jones at 7:41 AM on August 19, 2002


This is so, so wrong.

As Ufez and others who have traveled in Latin America can attest, Coke and Pepsi signs are everywhere, particularly in small towns where I suspect (anyone know?) that they provide signs for stores in exchange for half of it blaring COKE or PEPSI.

On a side note, one of many great things about traveling in Cuba is the utter absence of any of this crap. Fidel and Che billboards, sure, but no soft drink or sneaker or junk food brands...yet.
posted by gottabefunky at 8:24 AM on August 19, 2002


Wow, gotta love Cuba. Hooray for Cuba, they are so wise and progressive.

If the shopkeeper wants to make some extra coin selling part of his real estate as signage, who are you to tell him he is wrong?
posted by insomnyuk at 8:56 AM on August 19, 2002


When traveling through Mexico, every single one of the little "towns" (read: store and surrounding shacks) I went through had numerous Coca-Cola signs everywhere. It just seemed so wrong that the destitute people who lived in the area, who barely had enough resources to live, had to be constantly reminded to drink this carbonated sugar water that offers no benefits whatsoever.

Coke is evil - no matter where you live.

(But, oh do I love the stuff... Must. Break. Addiction.)
posted by MsVader at 9:06 AM on August 19, 2002


insomnyuk: I am someone who has to live in the same city and put up with the blight. It's part of the deal you make for living next to other people: you tone down your freedom to be obnoxious in exchange for my agreement to do the same.

If I want to make some extra cash playing concerts in my living room at midnight, who are you, in the apartment next door, to tell me I'm wrong?
posted by Mars Saxman at 9:51 AM on August 19, 2002


Well, it all depends if you have some sort of binding agreement with the guy next door, doesn't it mars?
posted by insomnyuk at 9:57 AM on August 19, 2002


insomnnyuk: Cuba is not necessarily wise nor progressive, just aesthetically fortunate not to have corporate logos everywhere, like so many other developing countries - at least until the U.S. travel ban is lifted.

Now painting logos in the Himalayan foothills and then denying it, well, that crosses a line...

[cracks open lunchtime Coke]
posted by gottabefunky at 10:00 AM on August 19, 2002


This is disgusting, what next?........the moon!

The moon?! C'mon man, that's crazy talk what you're talkin' there.
posted by crumbly at 10:27 AM on August 19, 2002


. . . the moon!

crumbly: you beat me to the (sugar-water, loaded with caffeine, artificially colored, artificially fruit-flavored) punch by posting that Pizza Hut pdf. Here's more information about advertising in space.
posted by LeLiLo at 11:34 AM on August 19, 2002


riffola: Sadly, Coke bought Thums Up (along with everybody else in the world) some time ago. Do you like the stuff? It reminds me of Tab.

Terrific press release, Thanotopsis.
posted by DenOfSizer at 1:07 PM on August 19, 2002


Thums Up is not at all like Tab, you must be confusing it with Campa Cola. Thums Up is a very fizzy, less sweeter than Coke, it's almost got a metallic taste to it, it's superb. I know Coke bought Thums Up, but it still tastes the same. I am glad the Indian grocery stores here in NYC import it.
posted by riffola at 6:04 PM on August 19, 2002


I am glad the Indian grocery stores here in NYC import it.

They import Thums Up? Holy crud! Do they sell Limca too? Man, I could go for some of that stuff now, especially with Massachusetts summers feeling so much like Bombay these days...
posted by ramakrishna at 12:05 AM on August 20, 2002


Yup you get Thums Up, Limca, Fanta (orange), Mangola, Frooti, all the various Maazas at stores like Patel Brothers or Apna Bazaar in Jackson Heights, Main Street in Flushing, and even in Hicksville (Long Island).
posted by riffola at 6:58 PM on August 20, 2002


I forgot to mention except for Frooti, which comes in a TetraPak form, the rest are all in glass bottles with a metal cap, classic soft drinks.
posted by riffola at 7:00 PM on August 20, 2002


Aw, man! I've gotta get myself to NYC one of these days... Dunno how I'd get the stuff back home to Mass though. Can only carry so much on my back, and I wouldn't wanna drive in New York even if I had a car... But still.

Mmm. Limca.
posted by ramakrishna at 10:32 PM on August 20, 2002


And now some very dubious advertising by Cadbury's India ...
posted by BobsterLobster at 5:08 AM on August 21, 2002


Darn it! I've been beaten to it by a front page post.
posted by BobsterLobster at 5:14 AM on August 21, 2002


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