Pepsi Pulls Widely Mocked Kendall Jenner Ad

NEW YORK (CBS SF/AP) — Pepsi is pulling an ad that has been widely criticized for appearing to trivialize protests for social justice causes.

“Pepsi was trying to project a global message of unity, peace and understanding,” the company said Wednesday in a news release. “Clearly we missed the mark, and we apologize.”

It said it was “removing the content and halting any further rollout.”

The ad shows Kendall Jenner, a member of the Keeping Up With the Kardashians reality TV family, stepping away from a modeling shoot to join a crowd of young protesters. The protesters cheer after Jenner hands a can of Pepsi to a police officer, who takes a sip.

PepsiCo Inc. had previously said the ad would “be seen globally across TV and digital” platforms, and had stood by the ad late Tuesday. In its statement Wednesday, PepsiCo apologized to Jenner for putting her “in this position.”

Critics say the image of Jenner handing the officer a Pepsi evoked a photo of Black Lives Matter protester Ieshia Evans approaching an officer at a demonstration in Baton Rouge last year.

Bernice King, daughter of slain civil rights leader,
Martin Luther King Jr. tweeted:

TM and © Copyright 2017 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

 

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