Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

No Harrier Jet for Pepsi Points

Hemos posted more than 15 years ago | from the so-the-a10-is-out dept.

It's funny.  Laugh. 494

XDG writes "The guy who sued Pepsi for failing to deliver a Harrier jump jet after he raised money the buy the requisite amount of Pepsi points has just lost the first round of his court case. According to the judge, "no objective person could reasonably have concluded that the commercial actually offered consumers a Harrier jet." More details are at CNN. " The worse part is that Rob and I had already booked it for the flight out to LWCE.

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

something doesn't add up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761380)

Anyone else notice that the guy raised $700 000 so he could buy pepsi points at 10 cents each, to get a jet for 7 000 000 points? I didn't see the television commercial, but it sounds like someone screwed up somewhere.

Since when? (1)

Nygard (3896) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761384)

Since when is reasonability required in the law? I see unreasonable things upheld by the courts all the time.

thats screwed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761387)

Okay thats like totally screwed. Oh Sure a normal person really has no need for e jet.. but don't OFFER it if yer not gonna follow your promise. This dude has every right to sue and get his jet..

screwed up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761392)

Err... sorry... not thinking. 10 cents, not 10 dollars. I haven't had my morning caffiene fix yet. :P

Sad (1)

CountZer0 (60549) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761395)

This is one of the many reasons I do not subject myself to the idiocy that is television. I find it very disturbing that someone who is capable of coming up with $700,000 would also be stupid enough to think that Pepsi was really giving away a harrier jet. Of course, I still think Pepsi could be sued for violating some sort of truth in advertising law. But that is not the point. I just find it hard to believe that this is an actual event, and not some joke news item. Are people really this stupid? I need to contact this guy, I have some great ideas for other things he could do with that $700,000.

Swamp land, Moon acreage, SPAM in space, or a big lot of virtual acreage in CyberYuga. I wonder if he would go for any of these things?

-CZ

what a retard. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761397)

Did he really believe that pepsi would give him a harrier jet? This person needs to use some common sense. Commericals promise lots of things. Drink this beer and have sex with hot women. Wears these shoes and play in the NBA. Or, how in commericals, barbi walks around and has conversations. Can I sue if my G.I Joe gun doesnt fire real bullets? -nick 0 mistertang@hotmail.com

what a retard. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761399)

Did he really believe that pepsi would give him a harrier jet? This person needs to use some common sense. Commericals promise lots of things. Drink this beer and have sex with hot women. Wears these shoes and play in the NBA. Or, how other in commericals, barbi walks around and has conversations. Can I sue if my G.I Joe gun doesnt fire real bullets? -nick 0 mistertang@hotmail.com

what? (1)

radius (35278) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761401)

no reasonable person would like they could get the jet. maybe he isn't a reasonable man, hell, who is reasonable these days... i hope he appeals on the grounds the judge was irrational.

Thwak, OW! (1)

styopa (58097) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761500)

If this guy seriously thought Pepsi was offering a Harrier Jet and was willing to spend $700,000 dollars to get it he should probably be removed from the gene-pool before he does anymore damage. I mean, seriously, Pepsi isn't going to be able to get ahold of a Harrier jet fighter, and even if they were the wouldn't just give it away like that.
Well, now he gets to get $700,000 worth of Pepsi crap, serves him right for being such a dumb ?uc?!

Ya now know pepsi points are worthless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761503)

Hey I live in NY and I don't drink Pepsi.. Between their lame pepsi points and that annoying little girl, I hate their stuff.. GIVE ME MANHATTAN SPECIAL!!! In case you don't know what that is, it's an Italian expresso soda bottled in NY.. Much better than any Coke or Pepsi products..

Re:thats screwed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761508)

You must not have seen the commercial? No normal person would have assumed that they were really offering a jet for 7,000,000 pepsi points. It wasn't even offered in the same manner as the other prizes. That guy is just a greedy moron! Too many people in this world are just like him, they think they will just get a lawyer and sue if something doesn't go their way

More details (1)

kramer (19951) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761511)

From what I remember about the case at the time, the kid actually raised the money by getting investors. Not only did he raise money for the points, but also raised money for suing Pepsi since he knew they wouldn't give the plane to him. He figured the shot at the possible payoff of a 20-30 million dollar jet would attract enough investors for him to fund the venture. Expect an appeal on this one. It's all about money.

No, people are that stupid... (1)

AtomicJoshua (56908) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761517)

"no objective person could reasonably have concluded that the commercial actually offered consumers a Harrier jet." Um sorry, but most people are just plain stupid enough to believe that. Look how many people think the Blair Witch Project is not fiction. As far as the judges other point: "Since each jet normally sells for $23 million, Wood said the possibility it could be bought for $700,000 was the first clue that the deal was 'too good to be true.'" Uh huh, so the average reasonable person is expected to know how much a military jets costs. I say he should get the jet. There wasn't an * or anything else to indicate that it was a joke.

It should have gone for 240 million points... (2)

Octorian (14086) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761521)

I think the Harrier jet at the end of the commerical was really cool, however it shouldn't have said 7 million points on the screen. Pepsi should have written an amount of points that exceeded the retail price of the jet, like all the other Pepsi stuff. So, say they make it 240 million points. That way, either no one tries to call their bluff, or they can actually deliver on it with no complaints.

However, the number would seem a bit extreme for a commercial :)

He would not be able to fly it anyway (1)

Zachary Kessin (1372) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761525)

The thing is that the Harrier is classified as a
"Powered Lift" aircraft not an airplane. And at the molment there are effectivly no civilian powered life aircraft. So untill he could find a Flying instructor (CFI) Rated by the FAA to instruct him on how to fly it he could not legally fly it. Also it unlikley that the FAA would issue a civilian registration to a Harrier. Making it a very expensive lawn orimnet.

Oh and expect several hundred bucks an hour to keep it in the air if you could get past those hurdles. Jets drink fuel like their is no tomorrow.

Caffeine kick ... (1)

LizardKing (5245) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761526)

I had to give up the caffeine thing after I passed out at work. The doctor asked me if I took stimulants (I think he was subtly asking if I did speed or cocaine), to which I answered in the negative. He was lost in deep thought for about a minute, and then asked how much coffee I drank a day. I told him, and he promptly told me to switch to decaf.

I sleep better at night now, but I miss that lightheaded buzz from drinking vast amounts of good coffee ...


Chris Wareham

The point of all this BS (2)

TheMeld (13880) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761530)

As other people have pointed out, if this guy can raise $700,000 from private investors for something this ludicrous, he can't be that stupid. So that rules out the possiblity that he is a childish little brat that doesn't get it that he can't get the jet. The other possiblity is that he knew all along (or at least pretty much all along) that you couldn't get the jet, and that it was just a joke.

In that case, the whole thing is basically a scam. What do you think he has done with that 700 grand? There's a good possibility that he is making a pretty penny off the interest. As far as him suing Pepsi, he's trying to make a point and/or an ass of himself. I think he made his point when he filed the lawsuit in the first place. I doubt Pepsi or Marlboro or any other company that does the points thing will make such a mistake again. The only reason for continuing the suit is to try and make some more money by making an ass out of yourself.

I'll bet you that when he went to those investors, he didn't say "I'm gonna make a 100 to 1 profit on this by selling the jet and you'll be even richer than you already are!" He probably went to them and said something along the lines of, "We can sue Pepsi for lots of money for this, so I need you to at least pretend to pony up that 700 grand, and to pay my legal fees, and we'll split the settlement and all be even richer, and who cares if we make ourselves look like noxious smelling assholes in the process!"

Making a living by suing other people is one of the most unrespectable employments possible. More so if you're filing ludicrous lawsuits, and even more so if you're not a friggin' lawyer.

Or maybe... (1)

farrellj (563) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761534)

it is a publicity stunt...Think on it...The Pepsi Points contest is long gone, but a few stories for the cost of their lawyers and the guys' lawyers, mere pittance to Pepsi, can get them international coverage.

ttyl
Farrell

Re:Sad (1)

Hard_Code (49548) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761549)

Umm, I don't see how it is that unreasonable. Companies ostensibly give away multi-million dollar cars, boats, property, trips, etc. in these stupid things that nobody wins of course. This guy was just calling their bluff. They should pay up. If they're going to market to the lowest common denominator, they have to expect to uphold their stupid offers. Give the man his damn Harrier.

Not even possible if judge went other way (1)

Status Quo (27191) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761553)

The Harrier is used in modern US military avaition, though not as extensively as the F-14, F-15, F-16, F-18, and F-117. There are laws on the books that require that all of a series of planes be completely decommissioned from military use before that variant is permitted to be sold for civilian usage. Pepsi would likely not have been permitted to obtain one as a result of these restrictions. The US government could have blocked obtaining the aircraft, even though it is of British manufacture.

Re:Capitalist Fatcats (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761555)

I want your pinko commie dick in my ass!

Re:what a retard. (2)

Jburkholder (28127) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761562)

>Did he really believe that pepsi would give him a harrier jet?

God, I hope not. I find it a little easier to beleive that he just wants to play games with Pepsi and see if he can get some kind of settlement. It's easier to imagine that this guy is independently (sp?) wealthy, has a spare $700 K and some 'lawyer friends' who have nothing better to do than mess with a huge conglomerate than to beleive some twit who is stupid enough to think that a $23 million military jet could be had by collecting Pepsi points and that this moron could actually raise 700,000.

I remember when I first saw that ad and I got the 'joke' but I also reacted that it was kind of stupid to show a kid taking off from his lawn in a harrier, show a point value, and not have a disclaimer. I remember thinking, "I bet some idiot sues because they saw this ad and think its real". This guy might have thought the same thing and decided to go rattle someone's cage over at Pepsi hoping to get some stupid settlement.

Re:what a retard. (1)

mayonaise (29272) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761566)

I don't think this person saw the commercial and immediately thought to himself, "Wow, Pepsi's really giving away a Harrier Jet?!?!? I gotta get me one before they're all out!" I'm assuming (and yes, we all know what happens when one assumes, but i would hope this is the correct assumption) that he knew Pepsi was "joking", but saw that there was no disclaimer, so attempted to show Pepsi up (using the truth in advertising thing) and make them give him what they promised. (i think pepsi could have avoided this with a simple (albeit annoying) disclaimer, which they happened to put into the commercial as soon as this guy popped up with his points.)

Hire that man! (1)

CaseyB (1105) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761568)

OK, so maybe the idea wasn't all that great, but look at what the guy did accomplish -- he managed to raise $700,000 from various sources to buy Pepsi points. This guy is every startup company's dream.

Moon Acreage (off topic) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761572)

One little side notice. I don't think $700,000 is enough to hire a spaceship to claim some land on the moon. As far as I know, no one has any claim on any land on the moon. There are some nice International laws regarding claims that makes any claims NASA might have made during the moon voyages null worth. (Sorry for the off topic, but I could not resist)

Re:Sad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761574)

it is an investment at Pepsi's expense. If he can get a Harrier Jet for $700,000 then he can turn around and resell it for at least a couple million. Not many investments will give that kind of payback in so short a time... unless you buy Microsoft stock.

Re:Thwak, OW! (1)

Hard_Code (49548) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761576)

Why is this guy being criminalized? If Pepsi offered the damn thing they should hold up their part of the bargain. When the hell does a company decide what "reasonable" means? Perhaps Microsoft should say, "oh, well, no REASONABLE person would believe our advertising, and expect that software is bug-free", and not make any bug fixes. It's stupid to blame this guy. Blame Pepsi for not expecting there to be people to call their bluff. They deserve it.

Re:No, people are that stupid... (1)

Nagash (6945) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761578)

You are correct. People really are that stupid. However, it would be erroneous to reward that behaviour by giving him the jet. That would encourage people to actually believe the crap that is on television.

I'm glad the judge is essentially saying, "You're an idiot. Quit wasting my time"

Harriers going for a song (1)

LizardKing (5245) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761588)

I forget the name of the place, but there's a huge US government installation where they store surplus military aircraft. I remember seeing a magazine article about it a while back.

They mothball slightly older military hardware in the event that it's needed in a major military operation. As it happens the planes just gather dust until consigned to the scrapyard. The program showed a fleet of B-52's being chopped up in line with a US-Russia treaty on nuclear bomber destruction.

I noticed that they had a whole flock of Harrier jumpjets from the US Marine Air Corp in storage. I'm sure Pepsi could get one of these on the cheap to give to the sucker.


Chris Wareham

Re:No, people are that stupid... (1)

Hard_Code (49548) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761592)

Give the man his damn Harrier.

Re:thats screwed (2)

Wah (30840) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761596)

B.S. Pepsi should have said specifically "this is a joke". They didn't. After I saw that commercial there was definitely some question as to whether or not it was real (No I am not an idiot, just saying "reasonable doubt", were it to apply to this case, exists). Advertisers take too many liberties in establishing their hooks, Pepsi should cough up the prize or it's cash equivelent, just for being so stupid. Expecting "Joe" to know how much a jump jet costs is ludicrous. My guess is that Pepsi has much better lawyers.

Re:Thwak, OW! (1)

hadron (139) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761600)

Pepsi shouldn't have offered the plane then.

Re:He would not be able to fly it anyway (1)

Hard_Code (49548) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761604)

Doesn't matter. Remember a while ago that guy bought a nuclear reactor and the government had to buy it back from him? Same thing. It's Pepsi's fault. Give the man his aircraft.

Bghrghgrrp! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761608)

The guy is obviously unreasonable to have drinken 7,000,000 cans of Coke. Mt. Dew I can see, but Coke????!!! Methinks that Cokeocola was thinking anyone who could drink that much Coke would just die and be unable to collect the Jet, and if he survived he would be WAY to fat to get it off of the ground.

Re:No, people are that stupid... (1)

Hard_Code (49548) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761610)

NO it would ENCOURAGE companies to STOP making STUPID MINDLESS false advertising commercials!

Don't punish the person for calling their bluff!
Punish the company for bluffing.

Unreasonable? What about PowerBall? (1)

Dredd13 (14750) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761612)

a 33:1 return on investment ($700K for $23M) is FAR more reasonable a contest investment->return ratio than is something like the state-sanctioned PowerBall or other "Super" lottos (didn't someone just win something like $115M from a single $1.00 ticket?)

The point of entering a contest like this is to get something for much less than its value. Happens all the time in charity raffles, lotteries, etc. Why is it so hard for the judge to accept that?

This comes down to a simple matter of Pepsi's advertising department having a mouth that was writing checks their ass couldn't cash, and now they're going to get big lawyers and make it even more costly for him to actually collect on something they're legally obligated to do.

bad advertising (2)

Trepidity (597) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761615)

If Pepsi intended this as a joke, they should either have had an asterisk and an explicit disclaimer announcing this fact, or have made the number of pepsi points be something equivalent to the cost of a jet. If they had said "get a Harrier for only 250 million pepsi points" rather than a mere 7 million, they wouldn't have had this problem.

Re:The point of all this BS (1)

Hard_Code (49548) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761617)

Yes, and I think making noxious smelling commercials is also one of the most unrespectable employments. When Pepsi and everybody else is busy trying to entice us with smoke and mirrors, their trick should actually be called.

Before:
"Oh yeah, here's a bazillion dollars if you buy our product!"

After:
"Oh, did you REALLY think you'd get a bazillion dollars from us! how UNREASONABLE laff laff Sorry stupid consumer! HARDEHAR"

Re:thats screwed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761628)

Actually, as I recall, the commercial showed a kid walking through school doing stuff and as he would use something, the announcer would say the item and the count. For example, he took his coat out of the locker and the voiceover said "Pepsi Jacket - 1500 points".
After a number of these, he walked out in the schoolyard to catch his ride home - a Harrier jet. The voiceover ("Harrier Jump Jet - 7M points") was just as matter-of-fact, with no indication it was a joke other than the obvious absurdity.

It seems to me that at the very least, an Federal Trade Commission judgement should be levied against Pepsi. Most joke ads that I've seen have some blurb at the end, and in fact Pepsi put a subtitle on airings of the commerical after this guy came forward, IIRC.

Simpsons (1)

davedavedave (27890) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761633)

Does this remind anyone of the Simpsons episode where Bart picks the elephant as his prize? Well, he got the elephant, maybe this bloke will get the jet! :-) I want my elephant I want my Harrier

Lies and the unreasonable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761636)

So corporations can lie all they want if any "reasonable" person would recognize it is a lie? Does this mean that Ford can advertise that their trucks get 65mpg since no "reasonable" person would believe it? Does this mean that Del can advertise that their $1,000 computers outperform the highest performance SGI?

That's it, I'm never reading comments again! (1)

disturb (32054) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761641)

Coca Cola has *nothing* to do with this!
Learn to read!

harrier for points (1)

Mykul (41817) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761642)

I think he should win.

If pepsi is stupid enough to offer it, they should be willing to own up to their responsibilities.

Pepsi was counting on people being so stupid that they would never have thought about actually trying for the jet.

Advertising is one thing, but playing on the 'moo-ish' people out there is just ignorant.

Smart/creative people should be rewarded, not punished.

Just MHO.

Re:Bghrghgrrp! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761647)

What a troll!

Read the friggin article! It wasn't Coca-cola. It was Pepsi. Keep it straight.
Besides, everyone knows Coke is better than Pepsi ;-)

Don't give him a real jet (1)

Rob Parkhill (1444) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761649)

When this lawsuit first came up, some friends and I discused what Pepsi should have done rather than fight this out in court: give him the jet.

No, not a real Harrier Jump Jet, but the model of a Harrier Jump Jet that was used in the filming of the commercial. You think they used a -real- Harrier? Not likely. At most, it was a $30,000 scale model built for the commercial.

Pepsi should have offered to give him that model for his $700,000. No lawsuit, as he is getting exactly what was in the commercial for 7 million points.


He oughta get the jet... (2)

John Campbell (559) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761652)

I don't see what's so unreasonable about it... sure, jets are expensive, but the guy had to get seven million points for it. Anyone that dedicated deserves the thing. If Pepsi didn't want to give away a Harrier, they shouldn't have offered one. If I was them, I'd get him the jet and write it off as an advertising expense... I know if they did, I'd be buying all the Pepsi I could get my hands on next time they offered to give away a Harrier... I really want a Harrier. They rock.

How much does a Harrier cost, anyway? And what's Pepsi's annual net?

Comprimise (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761655)

Pepsi should offer a comprimise. How about offering the guy a real cool car like a Toyota Camry. Hey, they could fill up the Camry trunk with cans of Pepsi One just for fun.

Aw man! (1)

GnrcMan (53534) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761656)

I was really rooting for that guy. stupid judge.

(0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761668)

So what if it's just a lawn ornament? It would make a cool lawn ornament damit! One guy lives in a 727. He bought it but isn't licensed to fly it. So why couldn't he buy a Harryer jet just to, like, look at it? And there's no "l" in "moment" neither.

Re:harrier for points (1)

Hard_Code (49548) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761670)

Yeah...BTW, while everybody is castigating this poor guy for being so "stupid" and laffing their arses off...explain to me how such a "stupid" lummox could have raised $700,000 and convinced investors to fund his legal case?

I would think that Slashdot of all places, would be the place where people blamed the media for trying to pull a fast one, instead of the person for calling them on it.

Re:Not even possible if judge went other way (1)

Single GNU Theory (8597) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761675)

Hawker-Sidley constructed the original Harrier (and the model before it as well), but the USMC's AV-8 version was built by McDonnell-Douglas.

Re:something doesn't add up (1)

GnrcMan (53534) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761677)

Yes, the week after that commercial aired, Pepsi realized they screwed up. They pulled the commercial and changed it to something outragious like 7,000,000,000,000,000,000 points.

Re:Bghrghgrrp! (1)

quonsar (61695) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761679)

The guy is obviously unreasonable to have drinken 7,000,000 cans of Coke. Mt. Dew I can see, but Coke????!!! Methinks that Cokeocola was thinking anyone who could drink that much Coke would just die and be unable to collect the Jet, and if he survived he would be WAY to fat to get it off of the ground.

drinken? Cokeocola?
Methinks?!?!?!?!

No, you don't. Don't read much either by the looks of things...

Truth In Advertising (1)

Goody (23843) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761681)

If Pepsi advertised that drinking Pepsi would prevent heart attacks, cancer, AIDS, and improve health in general while also being a perfect fuel to heat your home and power your car, would this be deceptive advertising or are we to assume that any resonable person would know this is obviously false ?

This decision clearly shows that corporate America can make any offer or claim without having to be responsible for the validity of it.

Re:Moon Acreage (off topic) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761684)

There are some nice International laws regarding claims that makes any claims NASA might have made during the moon voyages null worth.

There is the Moon Treaty, which names the Moon as the "joint heritage of mankind" or some such, -- but the US is not a signatory!

This means (to make up an example) that if a US corporation began mining moon rocks for Helium-3 or somesuch, there is no treaty obligating the US government to seize the profits from the company and share them with the UN.

This would be a good thing, because it wouldn't stifle commericial expansion onto the Moon, if there were any resources on the Moon worth extracting, which there are't and never will be, so it's a bit of a moot point. Just thought I'd share some useless trivia. :)

Oh come on! (1)

clump (60191) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761685)

I saw that commercial years ago and am shocked that people on Slashdot would actually side with the kid. Some arguments were "Pepsi didn't say it was a joke" or "Its the kids right".

Whether Pepsi was wrong or not, the kid should not have a military-grade weapon. Pepsi probably couldn't even get a Harrier. Any right-thinking individual would know it was a joke. Anyone that would think otherwise is too impressionable to be watching television.

To say the kid should get a jet is saying "Lets have the Government decide what constitutes our sense of humor."
-Clump

Man...the government really blew it here... (1)

Dr Drew (15165) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761688)

The clear move to me, would have been for the government to hit pepsi up for about 5,000 harriers. at this bargain basement price of $700,000. Think about it, it would cut the hell out of military spending, and the courts would put it through...Maybe they could even sell them off to foreign nations and make something on it...

Re:Since when? (1)

Stonehand (71085) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761689)

It's a false-advertising issue. If it's not "reasonable" to believe it, it's not really a true obligation (e.g. you couldn't have sued over the "Joe Isuzu" ads for their not letting you pay with shells, nor could one claim that a commercial actually led them to believe drinking a particular brand of beer conjures up bikini-clad babes and sue because that failed to happen. They're allowed to exaggerate, stretch things, and so forth -- as long as it's obvious to a "reasonable" person.)

Re:what a retard. (1)

Mykul (41817) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761698)

Where does it say in a beer comercial that you will have sex if you drink this beer??

It implies that, but it doesn't say that.

Re:Simpsons (1)

GnrcMan (53534) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761702)

I'm willing to bet that episode was inspired by this. IIRC the time frame is about right.

Re:Bghrghgrrp! (2)

Stephen Williams (23750) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761704)

drinken? Cokeocola?
Methinks?!?!?!?!

No, you don't. Don't read much either by the looks of things...

I believe the word "methinks" appears in a play by William Shakespeare! Though I don't think the Bard ever used "drinken" or "Cokeocola".

Please somebody shoot this bloke. (1)

The_Jazzman (45650) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761705)

Hey all,

I personally havn't seen the advert, but going by the CNN description the bloke must be pretty stupid to do it in which cash he should be forgiven. However in recent years the stupidity of people is getting, ironically, stupid.

For example, do we really need to be told that food cooked in the microwave is going to be hot... doesn't the definitipon of cooking imply that ?

Warning : Do not use hairdryer in shower.

Warning : Do not insert fingers into blender.

How more times do we have to put up with these phrases ? Whilst I do not consider myself to be of a superior intelligence I can figure out the odd maths question and write essays... averaged school stuff you might say.

However lets assume that this man is not of the stupid variety. Instead he has maken a bit of money and thinks that he has seen a golden oppertunity to make more. How ? Sue Pepsi for non-delivery of an advertised product. Mmm it could work, couln'd it ? And it would certainly help out with the bank loan.

So perhaps the question should change from "Why do we have to put up with stupid people (that sounds nasty... sorry ;)" to "Why should the greedy, money-grabbing man make life worse for us"

Warning : Do not use hairdryer in shower, because we know if you do then you will sue us (or maybe your family... *doh*) for lots and lots of money and we won't have a leg to stand on.

I read a while back about a man who had drunk so much at a bar that he fell of his stool and broke his pelvis, also severing the bottom part of his spinal column. He was left paralysed from the waist down. However, he took the nasty, evil, money making bar landlord to court because it certainly wasn't his own fault that he had drunk too much. Oh no, the barman has in fact *forced* him to keep drinking. He tried to go but couldn't.
Ok I'm attempting to drip a little sarcasm in, but the paralysed man won the case.

What kind of a world does this mean we live in ?

Re:He oughta get the jet... (2)

Jburkholder (28127) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761708)

>How much does a Harrier cost, anyway?


$23 million


>And what's Pepsi's annual net?


You really want to know? 1998 operating profit was about $2.5 billion.


pepsico annual report for 1998 [pepsico.com]


With numbers like this, I think this guy is just yanking their chain looking for a tidy little settlement to drop down.

I am not an idiot. (1)

FascDot Killed My Pr (24021) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761710)

But when I saw this commercial I did think for a split-second "I can win a jet?" The reason I thought this was that 7 million points seemed like an awful lot--I figured that if someone was actually able to get that many, maybe Pepsi had something up their sleeve.

As someone else has noted, when did reasonability become the criterion for legality? In a world where people can win lawsuits against peanut packaging firms because there is no warning about eating the shells, a company that says "you can win a jet" with a straight face has to be taken seriously. This is particularly the case with a well-heeled company like Pepsi that concievably really give a jet to the winner.
---
Put Hemos through English 101!
"An armed society is a polite society" -- Robert Heinlein

Re:No, people are that stupid... (1)

MarkKomus (71304) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761713)

Have you ever heard of sarcasim? Loosing at least lets people know that the justice system won't let lame ass suits like this go through. Ever wonder why people (in Canada at least) laugh whenever we hear about American lawsuits?

Ummm false advertising? (1)

smkndrkn (3654) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761716)

Last I checked making false claimes in advertising is called "FALSE ADVERTISING". There is a reason for some laws ( No I don't agree with all of them ). It is to protect the average person from whatever/whoevever. There is regulation on false advertising to protect joe blow from Megacorp...If you have to give away junk to get people to drink your soda thats fine...but don't lie to people. And if you DO then suffer...and pay out 23 M for the jump jet shut your piehole and don't offer a damn jet again.

That's not the point. (1)

Lord Kano (13027) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761718)

He may have planned to re-sell the jet. Imagine an auction with a Harrier starting at $1,000,000US.

There'd be people from all over the globe trying to jump in on that one.

Also, who says that he wasn't planning to rent it out? "Pay me $10,000US per day and you buy your own fuel, and provide your own pilot and you get to use a Harrier in your move like in 'True lies'."

Pepsi advertised it without any Caveats. No little *"Harrier not actually offered."

Those clearinghouse joints that offer prizes of 10 MILLION dollars would be in deep doodoo if they were to sand someone a notice saying "You have just won 1 QUADRILLION DOLLARS, but it will be paid in $10 per year increments for the next 100 trillion years.

This is bullshit, if there is no disclaimer, they should have to pay!

LK

stooopid. (2)

Signal 11 (7608) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761719)

Sigh. Another reason you should not watch TV. False advertising. I think Pepsi should lose this one. There are disclaimers on *everything* these days. If Pepsi was too lazy to put one in their contest rules, they should be held liable. They made a contract with this person - now they're trying to get out? The moral of this story is left as an exercise for the reader.

--

Give the man his SET :-) (1)

cpuffer_hammer (31542) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761728)

Since the first time I read this years a go I thought that PEPSI should give the man the MOCKUP they used for the ad. It is what thay showed with the sigh saying 700,000 points.

Of course it may be that he is being payed by PEPSI to keep the story and PEPSI's name in the public eye.

Have Fun

Official Jet of the Millennium (2)

coyote-san (38515) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761730)

On the one hand, I agree that no reasonable person could expect delivery of the jet since it's restricted military hardware.

On the other hand, I'm getting very tired of the hyperbole in current ads. It seems that the current cycle of hyperbole started with the Pepsi ad promising a Harrier jet.

I also think that the fact that the prize was a Harrier jet has muddled the judge's thinking. To draw an analogy, consider a Taco Bell ad that promised 10 tacos for $5, 100 tacos for $30, and 100,000 tacos for $1000. No reasonable person would ever buy 100k tacos, right? Wrong; it could be used as a promotion on large college campuses. (Free tacos for everyone if you come by our kiosk for information on time-share long distance calling!)

So, while I think the first guy was a bit opportunistic, I hope that he wins the cash equivalence just so the ad agencies will be more careful about making "just possible" claims. As countless other people have pointed out, Pepsi could have chosen a different point value of the jet -- and in fact later ads did show a much higher point value.

Re:Simpsons (1)

nerox (56326) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761733)

Stampy was the elephant :)

Re:Sad (1)

Stonehand (71085) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761735)

It's not reasonable. High-school students are rarely remotely qualified to fly a VTOL military aircraft, and civillian students almost certainly not. For a fellow to believe an ad like that is about as ludicrous as the woman who tried to sue the PA Lotto because she played for years and never won (true. thrown out, 'tho), or about anybody who looks at Nike ads and thinks that the shoes will turn him into the next Jordan clone, or people who buy magazines to increase their odds of winning the Publisher's Clearinghouse stuff (IIRC, it'd be illegal to tie odds in any way to purchases).

Sweepstakes that *don't* pay out *are* illegal, fwiw; there's probably an obligation actually to print the odds of winning and such.

Polo--you missed this one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761738)

In a move way DUMBER than the Harrier ruling, yesterday a judge ruled that Polo Magazine (devoted to the sport of polo) would have 90 days to change the name of their magazine because a shithead named Ralph Lauren owns the trademark on the word ``polo''. Un-fucking-believable! It should be noted that Ralph Lauren's gay ``polo shirt'' took its name from the sport of polo and that the logo is the image of a man on a horse playing polo. Common use of the word ``polo'' predates any shirt designed by Ralph Lauren.

Re:Lies and the unreasonable (1)

quonsar (61695) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761741)

So corporations can lie all they want if any "reasonable" person would recognize it is a lie? Does this mean that Ford can advertise that their trucks get 65mpg since no "reasonable" person would believe it? Does this mean that Del can advertise that their $1,000 computers outperform the highest performance SGI?

Sure! Just like Microsoft can advertise that their software [kevino.com] belongs in the data center!

Re:Harriers going off to die (1)

Nehemiah S. (69069) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761744)

You are probably thinking about (http://www.dm.af.mil/dmhist.htm) Davis-Monthan AFB, Az. Old Air Force planes go there when they are no longer usable, to be processed and destroyed. Valuable metals and components containing potentially environmentally hazardous chemicals are removed from the aircraft, which are then left to rust in the desert. For an aero type, this is the single most depressing place on earth; hundreds of huge, decaying hulks of once beautiful aircraft now abused by the wind and the sun...

The movies "Marlboro man"??? and "terminal velocity"??? (I am not sure about these names) both climax in the airplane graveyard.

Anyway, a harrier would not be sent there unless it was unflyable. In a stripped-down condition, it would barely be worth $700,000--though it would make a very nice lawn ornament... 'specially here in tennessee...

It is possible . . .maybe (1)

Beached (52204) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761745)

I am an ex-caffeen adict and before I quit (I drank diet-coke) I was upto 10L a day. That is equivilant to about 28cans. Now take me and a small town, city of about 100,000 people. In one day thats 2.8 million cans. Therefore it would take just under 3 days. Now take a large city with say 10million people and book a large stadium for 4 days. say it holds 70,000 people. if you fill it, say get a band or two. All of them buy pepsi. You could get 7,000,000 points with ease. just a theory :)

Re:That's it, I'm never reading comments again! (1)

quantumfire (71073) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761747)

Hey, it's a cultural thing. Here in the Land of Dixie, *everything* is Coke.

"Hey, I'm going to the gas station. Want anything to drink?"
"Sure, grab me a Coke, will you?"
"Okay, what kind?"

It sounds confusing, but somehow it's not...go figure.

Disclaimers (1)

pong (18266) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761748)

Howcome americans insist on putting disclaimers on
everything? Oh, that's right, your legal system sucks! ;-) In most other contries people don't even attempt these kinds of lawsuits because the jugde will laugh them out of the courtroom.

I wonder how ordinary americans perceive these things?

Are million dollar law suits a Good Thing for "real" cases?

Do you people really think it's reasonable that companies should people who hurt themselves because the act stupid? McDonalds and the coffee woman comes to mind!

Also, I've heard that the instruction manual to cars include driving instructions, so the company wont get sued because some jerk drives his car into a wall and sues the shit of them, because he really thought the car could do that

Re:Don't give him a real jet (1)

smkndrkn (3654) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761750)

Yeah and give him a model of the Jacket they were giving away too right? If you offer the jet you should give the Jet a REAL jet... what if they used a model of a car when doing car promotions...they should give you the model instead of the promised REAL car?

Re:It should have gone for 240 million points... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761753)

I suspect that there was a discussion along those very lines at Pepsi - whether to offer the Jet for a "real" price and put a huge number in the ad, or to put a "joke" price in the ad and hope no one asks for it.

The real issue is, I think, were *all* the items in the ads really unavailable, or was the jet the only item that was unavailable? If everything else was available, then an appeal may be able to convince a judge/jury(?) that it was not an *obvious* joke.

I think he should get the plane, or a big cash prize, and I say that only because Pepsi made a stupid choice by putting that plane and that price in so many ads...

screw Pepsi (2)

RoLlEr_CoAsTeR (39353) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761765)

I don't drink Pepsi. In truth, I don't drink any carbonated drink. (Of course, that's not really an important point for you to know as part of my rant).

However, I'd like to reiterate what I've read in other comments:

  1. If you can't legally, logistically, or realistically offer something, don't
  2. Honesty should be a part of advertising. (I realize it isn't, but it should be... those scammers)
  3. If you do offer something, be aware that there is probably going to be at least _one_ person who's going to take you up on that offer. I mean, there should be. To call your bluff, if nothing else.
  4. If you do offer something wierd, whacky, or unrealistic, and you cater the thought that someone might take you up on it, make the qualifications for obtaining that something very difficult, to make it worth your while offering it, and/or to discourage people from actually taking you up on it.


IMHO, I think the guy should be able to get his jet. I realize the ridiculous nature of the instance that he own the thing, but I also realize that, they did advertise it, and if he has met the qualifications, he should get it. It'll teach Pepsi to stop being so foolish, and hopefully other corporations will learn too. If he is restricted from obtaining such a vehicle/item, I think that some sort of prize/compensation be awarded him (although, seemingly contrary to the thought carried by this comment, I don't think he needs to be award the $73M [yes, I realize that, if he gets the jet, he'll have it anyway], b/c I don't think anyone needs $73M [yes, I also realize that many in this world have much more than $73M])

Clarifications (1)

GnrcMan (53534) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761766)

It seems like there are some people who haven't seen the commercial and don't know the circumstances, or are just plain confused.

The comercial aired. A week later, Pepsi realized they screwed up and pulled the comercial.

This guy had a tape of the commercial, talked with his lawyers, and found investors. His plan, ostensibly, was to book rides on the thing. The 700,000 wasn't to buy lots of cans of Pepsi, they actually sold points for 10 cents a piece.

IMHO, this guy is not stupid. Pepsi (before this guy had his 700,000 dollars) realized they'd fucked up and pulled the commercial.

Pepsi should pay (1)

deno (814) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761768)

I feel that too many of you out there responded with "he is a stupid kid" type reactions.

The question is not "is this kid responsible?", it is also not a "what would he do with a military jet?", nor "could anyoune really believe that particular commercial?"

The real question is: SHOULD A COMPANY STAND BEHIND THEIR COMERCIALS, OR CAN THEY JUST CLAIM ANYTHING AND WE HAVE TO LIVE WITH IT ???

If one lets the Pepsi go with this one, that may be a precedence for other cases where company sets a claim in their advertisements with absolutely no intention to stand behind it. So, now we have: "Do this and you will get a military jet" claim, finishing in "just a joke". What's next?

This car can stand a 100km/h hit with no scratches (just a joke - post mortem)

You can safely glue your dogs chain to the house with this glue (just a joke - tell it to the postmans testacles)

This rope is strong enough to hold a tytanic (just a joke, and your $$$ jacht is gone)

When I think of it, quite a lot of the advertisments are obvious fakes - anti cellulyte "wonders" beeing advertised by 19-years old girls, detergents miraculously washing everything at -20 C, while your angora pully does not show any signs of wearing off after 10000 washing cycles, "head&shoulders" shampoos (hey, I should know!)... These guys should pay for it oneday - the sooner the better.

As for the joke - I don't think it is funny.

Or a McLaren F1 (1)

??? (35971) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761770)

The guy did spend $700,000 getting all the needed "points." The McLaren F1 road driving version is worth about $866,000 (Wired 7.05 - 50 Ways to Spend a Lot of Money). That's a more reasonable return on investment than the $23 mil Harrier.

Re:He oughta get the jet... (1)

Smack (977) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761772)

He's not dedicated, you can buy the points for $0.10 each. So he just had to put up $700,000, which was apparently provided by someone else. It's just Pepsi's dumb ass fault for picking 7 million points, instead of the correct amount.

Pepsi should pay (1)

deno (814) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761774)

I feel that too many of you out there responded with "he is a stupid kid" type reactions.

The question is not "is this kid responsible?", it is also not a "what would he do with a military jet?", nor "could anyoune really believe that particular commercial?"

The real question is: SHOULD A COMPANY STAND BEHIND THEIR COMERCIALS, OR CAN THEY JUST CLAIM ANY SHIT AND WE HAVE TO LIVE WITH IT ???

If one lets the Pepsi go with this one, that may be a precedence for other cases where company sets a claim in their advertisements with absolutely no intention to stand behind it. So, now we have: "Do this and you will get a military jet" claim, finishing in "just a joke". What's next?

This car can stand a 100km/h hit with no scratches (just a joke - post mortem)

You can safely glue your dogs chain to the house with this glue (just a joke - tell it to the postmans testacles)

This rope is strong enough to hold a titanic (just a joke, and your $$$ yacht is gone)

When I think of it, quite a lot of the advertisments are obvious fakes - anti cellulyte "wonders" beeing advertised by 19-years old girls, detergents miraculously washing everything at -20 C, while your angora pully does not show any signs of wearing off after 10000 washing cycles, "head&shoulders" shampoos (hey, I should know!)... These guys should pay for it oneday - the sooner the better.

As for the joke - I don't think it is funny.

Re:He oughta get the jet... (1)

zmooc (33175) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761777)

Looks like you used HTML in your comment and submitted it in "Plain Old Text"-mode (since your linebreaks consist of 3 HTML-tags) :)

hmmm (2)

drwiii (434) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761778)

And this is why companies are such tight-asses about advertising these days. It's why you see an asterik by everything even remotely intended to be amusing in advertisements. Because stupid people will sue them.

Take Nintendo for example. I was looking at the box for the game Pokémon Snap [pokemon.com] . As you can see, the box features the lens of the camera with various game characters around it. If you look at the back of the box, you'll see a disclaimer: "This is a game pak, not a camera".

Well, DUH.

Re:Official Jet of the Millennium (1)

smkndrkn (3654) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761780)

Here Here

Make that several *thousand* dollars an hour. (1)

Kartoffel (30238) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761783)

Right. Even if this guy was allowed to fly it, just the cost of fuel alone would be several thousand dollars an hour. Add to that the cost of routine maintenance: the tools and equipment, the facilities, the people, training, etc. Plus you've got to buy or lease a hangar somewhere to store the darn thing, and register it with 10e6 different agencies, file flight plans, keep meticulous maintenance reports..... the cost of *owning* a fancy airplane usually makes the cost of buying one seem like a relative bargain. And even if such a financial feat was actualy possible, the FAA forbids all civilian flights from exceeding M1.0. What fun is that?

Re:Comprimise (1)

Dr Drew (15165) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761794)

I just want to know when the Camry became a "real cool car".

Re:thats screwed (1)

Pascal Q. Porcupine (4467) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761796)

WARNING: THIS IS A JOKE

Why did the chicken cross the road? To get to the other side!


---
"'Is not a quine' is not a quine" is a quine.

Re:Lies and the unreasonable (1)

??? (35971) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761799)

That's why Microsoft gets away with calling NT an Secure, Stable, Scalable Enterprise Solution. I understand now.

Re:Sad (1)

Scutter (18425) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761801)

Being qualified to fly a jet should be irrelevant. I'm not qualified to drive a speedboat, yet I enter the boat giveaway at the boat show every year. Should I be denied?

Just because it's a military aircraft is meaningless as well. It's already possible and legal for a civilian to own and fly a stripped-down F-14 Tomcat purchased from military surplus. Last time I checked, one of those could be had for around $300K.

Lastly, I don't think this guy actually thought they were giving away a jet. I'm of the opinion that he just wanted to call Pepsi's bluff. Wouldn't you?

Re:Bghrghgrrp! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761803)

Shakespeare was very creative with words and even their spelling. He never even signed his name with the same spelling. "Methinks" is not proper English grammar, Shakespeare or not. In his time, people were not so uptight about spelling and grammar. Had those silly rules been in place at the time, we would not have been gifted with such creative and interesting works such as that of Shakespeare.

Actually, you are. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#1761805)

You see, the inability to determine what could and could not be plausible is the definition of "idiot".

First 100 callers to 1-900-IMA-SUKR get $1000000 ! (1)

Keith McClary (14340) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761806)

Just kidding of course. No reasonable objective
person would believe that.
But I get to keep the 1-900 charges if any
SUKRs call, right?

What if it only said $10000 or $100 ?
How unbelieveable does it have to be?

If this sets a legal precedent it opens
a world of opportunity for scam artists.

Re:Disclaimers (2)

Jburkholder (28127) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761809)

I don't disagree, just wanted to point out the flaw in your McDonalds coffee example. IIRC, the McDonalds in question got repeated complaints that the coffee they served was so hot that it was melting through the styrofoam cups, and they did nothing. This woman did not spill coffee on herself because she was stupid. The coffee melted through her cup and caused 3rd degree burns on her legs. Little bit different from the "woman burns self with hot coffee, McD pays $$million" sound bite that ended up on the nightly news.

It's time for truth in Advertisments! (1)

Quack1701 (26159) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761810)

What gives here? Pepsi said they would come up with a Harrier if the guy bought enough pepsi. He held up his side of the agreement. Pepsi backing out is paramount to Fraud.

If Pepsi can claim, what reasonable person would have believed we could actually deliever what we advertise, then what is to stop Intel from selling a PIII 1 Ghz that can only run at 233 Mhz? They could come back and say, who really believes a computer can go 1 Ghz.

I don't like marketers who fluff. It is not always possible to tell what is fluff and what is real. Everytime a marketer makes a claim or a promise they can not hold up to, they should lose money, or even thier job.

But that is only my thought. Yours is probably different.

Quack

Re:Unreasonable? What about PowerBall? (1)

Stonehand (71085) | more than 15 years ago | (#1761813)

Because you don't automatically win with a lottery ticket; the percentage favors the house, obviously. Or did that slip your mind? The point of a lottery is to raise money for the state, by exploiting the concept of infrequent rewards: the customer is getting something (a very low monetary expectation) that's worth less than he's paid, if you just compare fiscal values.

Now, if the ad stated something like "pay 7 million points for a 1 in 30,000 chance of getting a Harrier -- or else, nothing", *AND* Harriers were civillian commodities, *then* it might be reasonable.

It comes down to a bozo who probably hoped he could scam the courts.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?