'You're On' Coke Ads Dropped
Some suspected not-too-subtle cocaine reference
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted May 9, 2014 4:31 AM CDT
Coca-Cola hasn't contained actual cocaine since 1903.   (AP Photo/The Abilene Reporter-News, Ronald W. Erdrich)

(Newser) – Coca-Cola has dropped its "You're on" slogan for Diet Coke after being widely mocked for ads that appeared to say "You're on coke," thanks to the positioning of the logo. The ads, some of which portrayed the drink as a quick pick-me-up, looked like a pretty unsubtle cocaine reference to some bloggers and the lampooned campaign was ditched after just three months, reports the New York Times. The slogan has been replaced by "Just for the taste of it," returning for at least the third time since it was used to launch Diet Coke in 1983.

"It's not likely that the reference was intentional," especially since the company's products used to actually contain cocaine, according to CBS, but David Gianatasio at AdWeek disagrees. "The campaign's wording is so obvious, I'd bet client and agency went this route on purpose," he writes. "The ads are certainly getting extra attention, and it's not so offensive as to cause the brand harm. Plus, there's plausible deniability." Coca-Cola says it "in no way endorses or supports the use of any illegal substance," and the slogan change was simply meant to provide "a different way to talk about the brand." (The company also recently agreed to remove a flame retardant from its Powerade drinks.)

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Showing 3 of 14 comments
May 10, 2014 2:55 AM CDT
Diet drinks in general taste awful. I think it takes one person to over react and send everyone over the edge. It's a soda, people walk around wearing worse things on T-shirts. I more upset about people glorifying the use of POT. I'm sick of people thinking its a cool thing to do. It's a drug, Illegal drug in most states and no drugs are cool for any recreational use. IMO.
May 9, 2014 11:00 PM CDT
I never could stand the taste of diet Coke. I like the real thing.
Crazy Horse
May 9, 2014 8:28 PM CDT
Having made a living in the advertising industry, I'm surprised this made it from the desk of the art director, past the creative director, past the copywriter, past the copy editor, past the VP of creative, past the senior account executive, past the product manager and finally approved by the client without someone noticing that perhaps is looks a little like is says "you're on Coke."