Coca Cola has angered gay rights activists after editing a video commercial to remove a scene featuring two men getting married.
The gay wedding is included in the same ad being shown in the UK and other countries. The ad is entitled ‘Reasons to Believe’ and contrasts negative images of anger and despair, with scenes of happiness and hope.
The message is that despite all the bad things in the world, there are millions of people determined to make things better.
The gay wedding is seen as one of the positive images in the UK ad but has been removed from the Irish version, where it’s replaced by an inter-racial wedding scene involving a black woman and a white man.
A spokesman for Coca Cola told the Irish newspaper, The Journal, that the scene had been removed from the Irish version because gay marriage is not legal in Ireland. He said: “The wedding images used in the ad for the UK and in other parts of Europe show two men getting married. The reason that this was changed for Ireland is that while civil partnership for gay people is legal, gay marriage currently is not. This will be the subject of a referendum (2015). We wanted each ad to be relevant and valid for its own market.”
However, the move has angered some gay rights activists.
Eile Magazine insisted that the scene was “entirely suitable” to be shown in Ireland. It claimed the gay ceremony used in the UK version was actually shot in Australia, which also does not have gay marriage.
The ceremony was actually a ‘same-sex union’ which is the equivalent of a civil partnership in Ireland. Eile said the scene would therefore have been appropriate to be shown in Ireland.
This is the UK version of the Coca Cola ad, featuring the gay couple.
This is the Irish version with the gay couple replaced by an inter-racial couple.