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Did Pepsi Fail with Amp App?

Did Pepsi Fail with Amp App?

You may have heard that Pepsi created an iTunes app to promote its energy drink Amp. And you may have heard that the app, “Amp Up Before You Score”, was offensive to women.  The app is designed to help guys “score” with 24 types of women from Cougars to Twins to Women’s Studies Majors. It offers helpful pick up lines, type-appropriate restaurant options and other helpful tidbits. The app urges hopeful men to “change your game and raise your expectations.”

 

Based on tweets and blog comments across the Internet, not everyone is offended by the idea of typecasting women into 24 buckets and building an app to seduce those women. Some think it’s funny. But what is hard to laugh off is that the app encourages men to keep a brag list of their conquests and even share the details with their friends via social media. 

 

More recently, you may have heard that Pepsi apologized for the app. That is not quite accurate. The company sent this message via Twitter: “Our app tried to show the humorous lengths guys go 2 pick up women. We apologize if it’s in bad taste & appreciate your feedback.”

 

That is not an apology. That tweet says that if the app is in bad taste, then the company apologizes. There is no accountability in that statement. And if Pepsi truly felt an apology was in order, then it would most likely pull the app. It has not. “Amp Up Before You Score” is still available as a free download from iTunes. And while some men’s antics may be humorous, encouraging men to brag about sexual conquests with no regard for the woman involved is not.

 

At a minimum it is disappointing to see a company use poor judgment in its marketing and then fail to take accountability for it. At a maximum, it is disturbing that a Fortune 500 company is promoting the idea of men raising their expectations with regards to “scoring” with women and then bragging about it publicly.  And somewhere in between, it is surprising that a market leader could make such a bad business decision. After all, women control 85-90 percent of consumer buying power in this country. Pepsi would be better served to recognize women as purchasing decision maker than as sorority girl, bookworm or vegan.  

 

It is appropriate that Pepsi used the hashtag #pepsifail in issuing its pseudo apology. That may be the only thing the beverage company got right.

 

What do you think?

 

 

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Liz O'Donnell

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18 comments

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7:43AM PST on Jan 2, 2010

i`m so glad i don`t drink any of these beverages.if i drank pepsi, i would have stopped,most definitely after the so called apology.

5:27AM PST on Jan 2, 2010

ridiculous! thanks for the info - glad my husband and i have switched to coke!

3:40PM PST on Dec 21, 2009

I think its just plain stupid. "amp up before you score". really?

7:20AM PST on Nov 2, 2009

Any advertisement that has things to do with sexual ideas should never be on anyone's phone because you never know if young children might hear it and that is a terrible idea.
Those kind of things should be left for things for adults only not for the general population or better yet don't do it at all that is even better yet.

4:40PM PST on Nov 1, 2009

Surely there are more important, life-saving matters in the world to be concerned about beside this. As a life-long Pepsi consumer, it will not make me make a change of beverage. It does seem out of character for Pepsi, but I'm less offended by them than by any knuckle-headed men who indulge themselves in this score-keeping rot. If women are more careful about whom they associate, this type of carousing would be a thing of the past. Ladies beware!!

10:12AM PST on Nov 1, 2009

Everyone spread the word
Google Bootstraps Fisher Ron Paul 2012

9:17PM PDT on Oct 27, 2009

i think that if the genders were reversed none of those here would say a peep...but then of course it certainly wouldn't have gotten a post on care2 at all...even considering historical degredation that's quite hypocritical.

is this stupid? sure. offensive? eh not really. just ignore it. people who are using this app are bound to be douchebags anyway...i don't think a computer game will turn any nice guys into sudden womanizers.

also, it takes two to "score"...the implication is that there is only one side to the situation. how do you know each of the women these idiots fuck aren't bragging to their friends about their conquests? certainly it's not as if anyone here would pretend that women don't kiss (or score) and tell...

12:11PM PDT on Oct 21, 2009

Traditionally, Pepsi has had a good record on family benefits, etc....they should fire the idiot that dreamed this up, it doesn't fit their company image and record. How could anyone have thought it was a good idea?

11:34AM PDT on Oct 21, 2009

Something I have learned in my 52 years of life.
Just because a person is in a position of great power or wealth, does not necessarily mean they are very smart.

Its important to note however that Pepsi is so large that the promotion likely didn't go though all the important screening that it should have.

10:44AM PDT on Oct 21, 2009

I am either getting old or smarter. If this wasn't sad it would be funny.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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