Smoking Gun Discovered in Budweiser Super Bowl Commercial Ripoff Scandal

Guess it takes a little pilfer to make a little pilsener over at Budweiser. We spoke to Zach from the Whitest Kids U’ Know about what is shaping up to be one of the most arrogant intellectual property thefts in recent advertising history:

“A while back, like in June or so, Budweiser contacted us through WMA [William Morris, their agent] and asked if we were interested in doing a regular show for them on what is I suppose called BudTV. We didn’t respond because we were already working with FUSE but DVDs were sent out anyways.”
There’s your smoking gun, nonbelievers and anti-civil rights activists–The Whitest Kids’ reel in a bow on Bud’s doorstep. That factoid coupled with the general ubiquity of the Kids’ video is enough evidence in the court of public opinion for us to make a ruling. Budweiser = Probably Guilty.

The main point of this is that just because we’re living in the YouTube age, intellectual property is not up for grabs. Attached after the jump is an official press release sent out late yesterday by the Whitest Kids on the whole situation.

PRESS RELEASE

New York, NY (February 6, 2007) — Despite the increase of viewer-created ads during this year’s Super Bowl, a local New York sketch comedy troupe isn’t laughing about a very familiar sketch during the recent Colts/Bears game.

The Whitest Kids U’Know, who star in the upcoming self-titled television series on the Fuse Network, are seeking legal counsel regarding the similarity of one of their well-known sketches to the commercial, “The Bud Light Slap Fight,” which aired during the Super Bowl on Sunday, February 4th. The troupe’s sketch, “The New Thing,” which is featured on both the group’s website and the network’s website, is set to air on the debut of group’s new show, “The Whitest Kids U’Know.” Given that Budweiser representatives recently requested materials from the Whitest Kids for its Bud TV campaign, its members view this as more than a coincidence. Judge for yourself…

Whitest Kids U’Know: “The New Thing” (takes a minute to load)

Bud Light commercial (scroll down to “Bud Light Slap Fight”):

The group feels that “Comedians of our generation are struggling to get their work out there, and sites like You Tube and College Humor have become a huge help with that, so it is devastating to think that big corporations and ad agencies would come in and just take that work and use it for their own purposes, without any compensation or, more importantly, credit to the creators.”

The Whitest Kids U’ Know, formed as college students, have amassed a loyal grassroots following from their performances at New York comedy clubs. They created a sensation at the 2006 Aspen Comedy Festival, winning the Jury Award for Best Sketch Group, and received several offers from networks. The troupe was given the rare opportunity to skip the pilot process and went straight to series with an order from the Fuse Network, which will debut “The Whitest Kids U’ Know” series on March 20th. The group is also writing a feature film for Paramount, which they will produce and direct and in which they will star. The Whitest Kids U’ Know are Sam Brown, Zach Cregger, Trevor Moore, Darren Trumeter and Timmy Williams.

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