• Germany edition
 
Berliners get Coke to return their sunshine
Photo: Facebook

Berliners get Coke to return their sunshine

Published: 07 Feb 2013 16:44 GMT+01:00
Updated: 07 Feb 2013 16:44 GMT+01:00

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.

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

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

17:28 February 7, 2013 by nandorocker
Thanks for the article! I'm the guy who started the campaign.

I have a question... where did you get that last quote from? I don't recall saying/writing anything of the sort.

Although I am proud to speak up, that sounds a tad arrogant and not my type of thing. I'd like to thank those 3559 people who put their names on the list, and say THEY were courageous and helpful to strangers. I'd also like to thank Change.org for their awesome work.

Either way, thanks again for the feature. I love your site because until I get better at German, it's the only way I get news here :)
18:53 February 7, 2013 by lucksi
¦quot;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.¦quot;

Informing people is not the same as asking them if it's ok to blot out the sunlight.
05:01 February 8, 2013 by wood artist
That's the nice part about freedom of speech. The landlord is free to say whatever he/she wishes...and apparently that includes selling the ad space. Of course, he/she is also free to enjoy the results of said speech, and in this case I think he's learned a new lesson about where his rights intersect with the rights and feelings of others.

wa
09:27 February 8, 2013 by The Local Germany
Dear Nando, we got an email from Change.org thanking everyone for their support of the campaign, which included the following and was signed by you! "Es hat mir und hoffentlich auf Ihnen vor Augen geführt, was jeder Einzelne erreichen kann, wenn er sich nur traut."

The Local Team
09:29 February 8, 2013 by Berlin fuer alles
Obviously the landlord cares little or nothing about the welbeing of his/her tenants. To block out the sunlight in such a fashion is also an infringement on human rights in my opinion. Also a bad marketing move for Coca Cola to do such a thing. I hope you all switch to PEPSI.
11:45 February 8, 2013 by jg.
In the UK, advertising hoardings like this require planning permission and it is during this process that tenants and neighbours would be able to present their objections. Is this not also the case in Germany?
13:04 February 8, 2013 by ichbines
I wonder if the landlord shared any of the profits from this ad with his tenants.
Today's headlines
German Muslims rally against extremism
Muslims pray in Kreuzberg, Berlin, on Friday outside a mosque which was damaged in an arson attack. Photo: DPA

German Muslims rally against extremism

Muslims across Germany held a day of prayers and rallies on Friday to condemn both Islamic extremism and a backlash against their faith that has seen arson attacks on mosques. READ  

German military flight to Iraq starts with a hiccup
The trainers on the air strip in Hohn, Schleswig-Holstein. Photo: Bundeswehr.

German military flight to Iraq starts with a hiccup

Military trainers flew to northern Iraq from Germany on Friday, ahead of a huge delivery of weapons from the German military, but things didn’t initially go as planned. READ  

Munich gets four Euro 2020 matches
Photo: DPA

Munich gets four Euro 2020 matches

UPDATE: Munich will play host to four Euro 2020 games, European football’s governing body Uefa announced in Geneva on Friday, but London was the real winner. READ  

Driver, 18, ploughs into school pupils
The scene by the bus stop outside the school in Diepholz. Photo: DPA

Driver, 18, ploughs into school pupils

An 18-year-old drove into a group of students outside a school in western Germany on Friday morning, injuring several. READ  

View from Germany
'In a globalized world we don't need more loners'
'No' campaign supporters celebrate in Edinburgh after the results were announced. Photo: DPA

'In a globalized world we don't need more loners'

UPDATE: The German government welcomed the result of the Scottish independence referendum on Friday, with Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier calling it the "right decision". READ  

Oktoberfest 2014
Your guide to Munich Oktoberfest's beer
Photo: DPA

Your guide to Munich Oktoberfest's beer

The Local's Oktoberfest guide chugs some of the Bavarian tipple fueling this whole shindig. READ  

Berlin squat ripped apart by fire
Kreuzberg's Cuvrybrache. Photo: DPA

Berlin squat ripped apart by fire

UPDATE: One of Berlin’s biggest squats was torn apart by a fire on Thursday night following an argument. READ  

Sterilized woman gets pregnant, sues doctors
Photo: DPA

Sterilized woman gets pregnant, sues doctors

A woman who gave birth after becoming sterilized has tried and failed to sue the hospital which carried out the operation. READ  

Thousands queue for Apple's iPhone 6
Queues outside the Apple Store in Dresden. Photo: DPA

Thousands queue for Apple's iPhone 6

UPDATE: Apple’s new iPhone 6 went on sale on Friday morning, leading to long queues outside stores across Germany. Berlin's Apple Store sold out of the iPhone 6 Plus in an hour. READ  

Blitzmarathon
Pupils catch teacher and mum speeding
A camouflaged speed camera in Schleswig-Holstein on Thursday. Photo: DPA

Pupils catch teacher and mum speeding

UPDATE: A nationwide operation against speeding drivers ended on Friday morning, with police hailing their "Blitzmarathon" as a success. One child in Düsseldorf caught his own mother driving too fast, while another driver hit 238 km/h. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: DPA
Culture
Your guide to Munich Oktoberfest's tents
Photo: DPA
Hamburg
Drunk teachers ruin school trip to Hamburg
Marks & Spencer
Sponsored Article
Fashion Ladies of the Local: Win a New Autumn Look
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Oktoberfest 2014: The best and worst in dirndl fashion
Photo: Shutterstock
Gallery
Ten German words you'll never want to hear again
Photo: DPA
Education
German universities tumble in global rankings
Photo: Shutterstock
Business & Money
The three types of firms hiring foreigners
Photo: DPA
Berlin
Frisky couple shock Berlin commuters
Sponsored Article
Bilingual education from nursery to graduation at Phorms
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,376
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd