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Bud Light debuted its “Up For Whatever” campaign at the Super Bowl in 2014. But now it seems the company might have gone a step too far with the YOLO spirit with the introduction of new bottle labels, which are, shall we say, a bit on the rape-y side.
A photo of the label was tweeted by Lucy Leiderman, director of digital strategy and analytics at BBDO, the ad agency responsible for Bud Light’s creative ads. (Leiderman was quick to point out that the agency is not responsible for the beer’s packaging.)
Her tweet has since been deleted, but it read: “Oh no. Bud Light’s new tagline: “The perfect beer for removing ‘no’ from your vocabulary for the night,” with the photo below.
Although some speculated that the Bud Light label was a hoax, Leiderman confirmed in a follow-up comment on the tweet thread that the label was not Photoshopped.
Lisa Weser, senior director of U.S. marketing communications for Anheuser-Busch, Bud Light’s parent company, finally responded to critics on Tuesday afternoon via Twitter.
Considering that rape culture is at the forefront of the cultural conversation, especially on college campuses where Bud Light is constantly flowing, the slogan seems like a particularly egregious misstep on Anheuser Busch’s part. It’s especially offensive in light of Budweiser’s recent ad campaigns, which focus on the need to drink responsibly.
Photo via Tricia/Flickr (CC 2.0)
Marisa Kabas is a lifestyle reporter and activist. Her work has been published by Fusion, Fast Company, and Today. She’s also served as an editorial campaigns director for Purpose PBC, a social movement incubator.