Pepsi ads wink at music downloading

A new sort of Pepsi Generation will get air time on the Super Bowl: music downloaders. Some 20 teens sued by the Recording Industry Association of America, which accuses them of unauthorized downloads, will appear in a Pepsi-Cola (PEP) ad that kicks off a two-month offer of up to 100 million free — and legal — downloads from Apple's iTunes, the leading online music seller. The sassy ad, to be seen by Super Bowl's 88 million viewers on Feb 1, is a wink at the download hot button. Pepsi hopes the promotion will connect its flagship cola, as well as Sierra Mist and Diet Pepsi, with teens who've shown more affinity for bottled water, energy drinks and the Internet.

The ad identifies the teens as a "few of the kids sued for downloading music free off the Internet." RIAA has filed 914 lawsuits since it began cracking down in September, including 532 this week. Annie Leith, a 14-year-old from Staten Island, appears with other downloaders in the ad, which features music by Green Day. The band cut a special version of the 1966 Bobby Fuller Four hit I Fought the Law for the ad, by BBDO, New York. In the ad, Leith holds a Pepsi and proclaims: "We are still going to download music for free off the Internet." Then the announcer says how: "Announcing the Pepsi iTunes Giveaway."

News source: USA Today

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