...The first 90 seconds of the spot were fantastic. As a viewer, I learned some of the steps the nation’s leading beverage company is taking to provide us with healthier drinking options. It has more than 180 low- and no-calorie options, many of which have replaced higher-calorie offerings in school vending machines. It has created smaller, portion-controlled sizes as well as boldly stated the calorie count of each drink on its cans. It supports initiatives like the Boys & Girls Clubs that encourage kids and young adults to get active. These efforts have helped reduce the average calories per serving across the soda industry’s products in the United States by about 22 percent.
That’s a fantastic story, if it stopped there. If Coca-Cola had admitted that overconsumption of its higher-calorie beverages has led to greater numbers of obese individuals while emphasizing its efforts to offer healthier beverage options, portion control and transparency in calorie counts, I’d applaud it (though would wonder why its message warranted a 90-second spot). But it didn’t admit the truth, and the ad didn’t stop there.
At about the 90-second mark, Coca-Cola’s storytelling machine went off the rails. Instead of coming clean and admitting that it’s a source of the problem, it proclaimed that “all calories count, no matter where they come from.” The line was made intentionally vague because it implies something that is not true. While it’s true that all calories count, it’s untrue that they’re created equal, and that’s indisputable....
Via Jeff Domansky