Photo taken at John and Adelaide Streets, by Ian Simpson.
Reader Ian Simpson sent us this photograph, yesterday, of a newly installed billboard for Bud Light at John and Adelaide streets. It reads: “Torontonians aren’t cold. Not in August, anyway.” The ad, of course, is a direct response to a Coors Light billboard in British Columbia, which announced that that company’s beer was “COLDER THAN PEOPLE FROM TORONTO.”
The Coors Light ad sparked outrage. Well, outrage and the usual hand-wringing over whether or not it’s good practice to devote coverage in major news media to advertisements. And there were also plenty of people who didn’t see what the huge problem was.
But there was also definitely some outrage. Or at least a pretty good approximation of it.
On August 18, the same day the Coors billboard landed in the Star, CBC News reported that Coors had apologized, and that the company had promised to remove the offending ads, after receiving “about ten” complaints by phone and email.
Some Torontonians, it would seem, resent the perception that we, as a city, are uptight and incapable of warmth and humour. Protesting a billboard that made light of that stereotype in a (kind of) cute way was probably not the best way to go about dispelling that notion, but no matter. Complaints really do make a difference, and now we have a heavily qualified counter-slogan from a rival, equally crappy beer conglomerate to prove it.
Enjoy your free advertising, Bud, you King of Beers. You earned it.
(Meanwhile, Coors takes advantage of our temporary lapse in attention to colonize our bus shelters.)