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Coca-Cola Runs Into Issues With Its Make-Your-Own Label

Though the company says it has an explanation
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 24, 2021 2:11 AM CDT

(Newser) – "Black Lives Matter" is not allowed but "White Lives Matter" or "Blue Lives Matter" is? No "Hitler" or "Nazi," but "I am Hitler" or "I am a Nazi" is fine? "Gay Pride" is a no-go but "White Pride" is acceptable? You can't write "transgender" but "QAnon" is A-OK? That's what it seemed like for users who experimented with Coca-Cola's make-your-own-label promotion, though the company says all is not what it seems. Coca-Cola blocked certain offensive words, celebrity names, and trademarks, CNN explains, but users were able to slip certain offensive statements through, like the ones mentioned above. Newsweek reports that "Palestine" was blocked while "Israel" was not, and one user pointed out that "Mohammed," one of the most popular names in the world, was apparently blocked.

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However, Coca-Cola says just because certain phrases appeared to be allowed does not mean they were actually printed on a label. "We're continuously refining and improving our Share A Coke personalization tool to ensure it is used only for its intended purpose," a rep says. "Words or phrases that have appeared in the preview mode of the tool may not necessarily be approved, but rather are words we have not previously assessed. Actual bottles are not made with words that are inconsistent with the program's intent. We have clarified in the tool's preview mode that proposed language may require further review." (Read more Coca-Cola stories.)

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