Indicating that CBS executives learned nothing from their decision to meddle in CNET editorial policies to prevent Dish's Hopper ad-skipping DVR from winning a CES award, CBS is now under fire for banning an ad that they falsely believed threatened business partners. CBS decided they would ban a SuperBowl ad by home carbination machine company SodaStream because it ridiculed two of CBS's biggest ad partners, Coke and Pepsi.
As Will Burns at Forbes observes, CBS could have just played objective middle man as a media outlet, but executives seem to enjoy creating scandals that blow up in their face:
quote:If CBS had simply played the “unbiased middleman” card in this case, there’s very little Coke and Pepsi could have done. They certainly would not have pulled their Super Bowl ads. Instead, Coke and Pepsi would have been forced to retrench and figure out a marketing way to solve this SodaStream problem and not a mafia way (I mean that metaphorically, of course).
SodaStream was ultimately allowed to run a second, less "controversial" ad (the original is embedded below). That's the second time in as many months that CBS has tried to ban or thwart a disruptive technology consumers might like because it didn't mesh with its executives' world view. It's also the second time the company has stupidly given an ocean of additional attention to a technology they tried to thwart.