On Wednesday, August 8, a post showing a Dr. Pepper advertisement that appeared to be targeting members of the LGBTQ community went viral on Twitter.
Many in the community are NOT happy about it.
The picture from Twitter user @BarmyArny shows what appears to be a magazine ad with pictures of a Dr. Pepper can from various angles.
The picture from above is labeled "top," from below is labeled "bottom," and from the side is labeled "vers"—referencing a slang term in LGBTQ communities. Vers is short for "versatile" and refers to a person willing to be either a top or a bottom during sex.
The ad concludes by describing Dr. Pepper as "a queer drink for diverse drinkers."
@BarmyArny Is that a real ad?! https://t.co/w4mDJGgJ5Z— Christopher Aukerman (@Christopher Aukerman) 1533733915.0
The LGBTQ community was more than a little annoyed at the advertisement.
@BarmyArny i like the idea that being top/bottom/vers constitutes diversity. where is the drink for the frot/vore-only queens— Tyron (@Tyron) 1533713958.0
@BarmyArny @WarrenIsDead https://t.co/p4S7JiLf49— Lola 🌜 (@Lola 🌜) 1533769747.0
Some LGBTQ individuals began to debate whether or not the ad was problematic or not, with one Reddit user saying:
"I think appearance in adverts actually aids in normalisation, at least a little bit."
Another user responded:
"Except their goal isn't to normalize anything, they don't give a shit about us as long as we give them our money."
@BarmyArny second of all, if you wanna ally fr, why not make the ad show something more tasteful like oh idk Captai… https://t.co/haOynt4VYs— King Gay. Rool (@King Gay. Rool) 1533736865.0
But some people questioned the ad's authenticity. The original poster, "ah no" or @BarmyArny claimed to have found it in a Swedish LGBTQ magazine even though the ad is entirely in English.
@itsjackc A Swedish gay mag— ah no (@ah no) 1533743306.0
Dr. Pepper, which is represented by Keurig in North America, said they are unable to comment on advertising done by other company divisions overseas.
@BarmyArny https://t.co/XqDMoCmN0p— Miss Wobble (@Miss Wobble) 1533762879.0
It is, as of yet, unclear whether the new Swedish Dr. Pepper ad exists or has attracted flocks of LGBTQ consumers.
But after the negative response on English language social media, the company should probably taper off their expectations if they ever decide to do something similar outside of Sweden.
@linalovesit @BarmyArny But I would love to know where other drinks fall in the "top/bottom/vers" scale. Sierra Mis… https://t.co/b6hxrE5SoT— Scott Dobbin (@Scott Dobbin) 1533756449.0
@BarmyArny @simonefiasco https://t.co/oIHzcktZaW— ℙ𝕣𝕚𝕟𝕔𝕖𝕤𝕤💖💛💙𝕁𝕖𝕝𝕝𝕪𝕗𝕚𝕤𝕙 (@ℙ𝕣𝕚𝕟𝕔𝕖𝕤𝕤💖💛💙𝕁𝕖𝕝𝕝𝕪𝕗𝕚𝕤𝕙) 1533749965.0
#DrPepper ad referenced gay sex-culture norms in order to sell the LGBTQ community more unhealthy soda — but then q… https://t.co/rwH0uCxStS— CounterCorp (@CounterCorp) 1534021812.0
The LGBTQ community doesn't need @drpepper (or any other product) to be "gay". Stop with this nonsense. https://t.co/e73q42w2HU— Daniel (@Daniel) 1533919188.0
Mr. Pibb used to have 29-sided cans to represent the full LGBTQ+ spectrum, and this was back before Lawrence v Texa… https://t.co/Mn805LTWAJ— Brandon 🚷 (@Brandon 🚷) 1533770402.0