Bud Light’s NFL announcement draws backlash

Bud Light has come under fire on Twitter after the beleaguered beer brand’s Twitter account shared a post about the upcoming National Football League (NFL) season.

The Bud Light post in question referenced the upcoming start date for the next NFL season, which is set to begin in September. However, it was met with relentless derision on the platform from a faction of critics who continue to publicly express their distaste for the brand.

Bud Light has been under fire since early April, when transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney unveiled a small partnership with the Anheuser-Busch brand. In a video posted to Instagram on April 1, Mulvaney said Bud Light had sent her a can with her face on it to commemorate her 365 days of living as a woman.

Mulvaney’s partnership with Bud Light drew condemnation and boycott calls. Musicians Kid Rock, Travis Tritt and John Rich were also among those who spoke out against the brand after the collaboration. Meanwhile, some in the LGBTQ+ community criticized the company for not defending its ties to Mulvaney.

Aluminum cups and Super Bowl-themed Bud Light bottles at Hard Rock Stadium on December 22, 2019 in Miami, Florida. The beer brand continues to face backlash over its partnership with trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney.Mark Brown/Getty Images

Since calls for a boycott began nearly four months ago, Bud Light has seen domestic sales decline. Revenue remains consistently below what it was at the same time in 2022. The company has also lost its crown as America’s most popular beer, with Mexican rival Modelo Especial now in the top US spot.

Newsweek has reached out to representatives of Anheuser-Busch via email for comment.

With the Anheuser-Busch brands slowly returning to posting on social media, Bud Light shared just a few words about the upcoming NFL season. “Only 8 Sundays to the @NFL but who’s counting…” read the tweet in question.

The post was met with a wave of backlash as a number of Twitter users continued to express their opposition to Bud Light. “An apology would have gone a long way Budweiser, but it’s too late now,” one Twitter user wrote.

“Thank you Bud Light marketing team,” commented another. “You give my life meaning by stopping by your account and ditching you.”

“Really? Budweiser and Bud Light are going to spend millions on NFL ads, like it’s business as usual, with ZERO ads addressing the issue?” another tweeted. “I said before that like the person whose only tool is a hammer who sees every problem as a nail, AB marketing sees the solution to every problem. But, it’s ridiculous. Go ahead and spend the money while we laugh, but it’s getting silly. #GoWokeGoBroke.”

Slammed another: “It’s been almost 4 months since Bud Light destroyed their brand, but who’s counting.”

Amidst the wave of criticism, several other Twitter users spoke out in defense of Bud Light.

“Every Sunday this coming season, my fridge will be LOADED with Bud Light for the NFL!” wrote one follower on Twitter. “And I can guarantee you that [Super Bowl] the party will have enough light for EVERYONE.”

“I’ve had many a Bud Light to watch football and have every intention of having many more!” posted another.

Aiming at Bud Light’s critics, a third commented: “I love reading all these comments about the boycott and stuff and listing all the other beer brands they’ve decided to drink instead. Like none of them have promoted [LGBTQ+] Also pride. It’s almost like…love is love.”

“The boycott has gone on too long, time to give it a break,” wrote another Twitter user.

A Twitter post recently shared on Anheuser-Busch brand Budweiser’s account regarding Major League Baseball (MLB) received a similarly mixed response from users.

Over the past few weeks, a number of social media users have also shared photos and videos of unsold Bud Light on store shelves and at venues. This is an attempt to illustrate the alleged success of the boycott of the beer brand.

Bud Light has implemented a number of strategies to boost sales in recent weeks, such as offering steep discounts that made the beer free or nearly so in some areas.

On June 29, Mulvaney accused Bud Light’s parent company, Anheuser-Busch, of turning a “blind eye” to the transphobic attacks she endured after her association with the brand.

In a TikTok post with the caption “Trans people like beer too,” Mulvaney accused Anheuser-Busch of not reaching out to her at the height of the criticism.

“I waited for the brand to reach out to me, but they never did. And for months now, I’ve been afraid to leave my house,” Mulvaney said. “I’ve been mocked in public. I’ve been followed. And I’ve felt a loneliness that I wouldn’t wish on anyone. If this is my experience from a very privileged perspective, know that it’s much, much worse for other trans people.”

While not directly naming Anheuser-Busch, Mulvaney added, “For a company to hire a trans person and then not publicly stand by them is worse, in my opinion, than not hiring a trans person at all, because it gives customers permission to be as transphobic and hateful as they want. And the hate doesn’t end with me. It has serious, serious consequences for the rest of our customers, and we know a lot more of our customers as well.”

Leave a Comment