Coca-Cola blurs out sponsors on its new CokeTV YouTube channel

Coke has launched its own YouTube channel in the UK but has confused a few viewers by blurring out other brands that pop up organically within its videos.

Coca-Cola: the soft drinks firm is hoping to appeal to the YouTube youth
Coca-Cola: the soft drinks firm is hoping to appeal to the YouTube youth

Called CokeTV, the new channel is fronted by Emmanuel "Manny" Brown and Dodie Clark and is intended to appeal to a youth audience.

Brown is known on his own YouTube channel for playing football online and in real life, while Clark vlogs about her life and music.

The pair will host weekly episodes on gaming, sport and music in a magazine show-style format that Coke claims will "reflect the passions and interests of young people" in the UK.

In one episode, called Manny's PES showdown, Brown takes on a guest at a game of Pro Evolution Soccer.

But unlike games hosted on Manny's own YouTube channel, sponsor logos which crop up on-screen during the game are blurred out.

A spokeswoman for Coke explained the soft drinks company would need to ask express permission from the brand owners even to feature their logos in situ.

The omission has not gone unnoticed by the YouTube's famously fussy audience, with one viewer asking why the sponsors had been blurred out.

YouTube stars often talk about the need for authenticity and transparency when working with brands, but the commercial reality may mean this is difficult in practice.

CokeTV is Coca-Cola Great Britain's first attempt at branded content and is based on CokeTV Germany, which launched in 2014 and has garnered around 275,000 subscribers. The soft drinks firm worked with production company Endemol on the launch.

Coke is hoping to boost its to a broad base of young users, with Manny appealing to the online gaming crowd, with Dodie pulling in a female audience.

A spokesman said: "Manny and Dodie are both up and coming YouTube stars and between them have a broad audience which taps into two passion points that have long been associated with our brand - music and football. We thought they were the perfect fit and we’re really excited to be working with them for CokeTV."

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