Blog: Olly WehringDr Pepper v Guns n' Roses - Welcome to the (legal) jungle

Olly Wehring | 27 November 2008

When does 'a bit of PR fun' become more hassle than it's worth? Well, you could always ask Dr Pepper Snapple Group.

The company is currently at the business end of a legal complaint from the lawyers of rock group Guns n' Roses. In March, you may recall, DPSG promised consumers in the US a can of Dr Pepper each if the rock group came good on the planned release of new album 'Chinese Democracy' this year. Recording initially began on the album in 1994.

At the time, G n' R's main man, Axl Rose, said he was “surprised and very happy to have the support of Dr Pepper”.

'Chinese Democracy' hit record shops earlier this month and, dutiful to the last, DPSG honoured its promise, even extending the window for consumers to apply for their free can by an extra 18 hours, as well as opening a toll-free number.

But, in a letter to DPSG earlier this week, lawyers for the rock band said the company had “clumsily implemented” the redemption set-up, and “'ruined' the day of 'Chinese Democracy's' release” for many fans.

What had begun as a “fun giveaway”, as a DPSG spokesperson told press this week, now looks a bit too much like hard work to me.

No publicity is bad publicity, though, I guess.


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