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Berliners get Coke to return their sunshine

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Photo: Facebook
16:44 CET+01:00
Residents in a Berlin apartment block have managed to get Coca Cola to remove an enormous advert which had been hung over the building blocking out their light. A short, sharp campaign on social media did the trick.

The huge mesh poster advertising Diet Coke with the tagline 2we aren't sorry" was hung on the side of the building on February 1st, Berlin newspaper Tagesspiegel reported on Wednesday.

It kept those living there awake at night as it was lit up - but blocked out so much light during the day that they had to put lights on if they wanted to do anything.

For 31-year-old Fernando Rossi, who lives in the building, this was unacceptable. He took to Facebook and the petition website Change.org to drum up a little support for those trapped behind the fizzy facade.

Rossi set up the “We are living in our own private Coke advert” Facebook group on Sunday night and by Wednesday it had 250 likes, despite it being written entirely in English. On Change.org, more than 2,600 people had signed the petition.

“I also want to clarify that I don't blame Coca-Cola for this,” said Rossi on the Facebook page. “I'm appealing to them because I believe they are a serious, global brand with a reputation and probably have no idea a landlord would be doing something like this without consulting the tenants' will,” he added.

Coca-Cola soon got in touch and said that they would remove the mesh poster from the scaffolding, which covers the whole building while it is being renovated.

Because the road was too busy to take the mesh sheet down in the daytime, Coca-Cola initially added a poster which changed the sign to read “We're sorry”.

An apology from the company hangs in the lobby, reading “the front of your house is, without restrictions, for rental by companies wanting to advertise. Your landlord stressed that you had all been informed about this.”

But Rossi was, he told the Tagesspiegel never informed about the poster, which was supposed to stay until the end of February.

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In the email Rossi sent out to those who signed the petition, he thanked everyone for their support and said he hoped the action showed "what every single person can do when they just have the courage."

The Local/jcw

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