Medium: Digital C Print on Fujicolour Crystal Archive Pearl Paper, signed by the artist
Good To Know: Artwork is shipped directly from the artist's studio
Arty-Fact: Beyoncé’s “Me, Myself and I” from her Dangerously In Love album was released on iTunes in 2004. It was part of Apple’s and Pepsi’s campaign to download 100 million free songs.
In 2004, the US recording industry pivoted from litigation against teenagers downloading music illegally to engaging with them by partnering with Apple and Pepsi to promote 100 million free download codes on the newly launched iTunes service.
The winning codes were randomly seeded in 20 ounce and 1 litre bottles of Pepsi, Diet Pepsi and Sierra Mist, and redeemable for a free song from the iTunes Music Store.
The objective was simple. Get more people to use iTunes and shift user behaviour into downloading music off the internet legally.
To kick-start the campaign, Pepsi released a television ad during the 2004 Super Bowl. The ad was set to Green Day's cover of 'I Fought the Law’ and featured close-ups of kids who had been prosecuted in real life for illegal file-sharing.
Unfortunately, the campaign flopped. Pepsi dropped the ball when the yellow-capped bottles with the Apple song codes were late in reaching key markets.
In addition to supply chain issues, there was a big design flaw in the caps of the Pepsi bottles. By simply walking into a store, grabbing a bottle from the fridge cabinet, and angling it against the light, one could read the code without having to buy the bottle, and download the music for free. This trick became common knowledge and word quickly spread, ironically over the internet.
When iTunes and Pepsi discovered that people did not need to buy Pepsi bottles to get their free music, and even then only around 5 million songs were downloaded against the projected figure of 100 million, they decided to abandon the campaign.
Regardless of the unsuccessful campaign, the shots taken of Beyoncé by Markus are retro chic and iconic.
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