Beatles fans lash out as hippie anthem used in ad

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The Independent Online

Beatles fans have reacted angrily to the use of the band's hippie anthem "All You Need Is Love" to promote a range of £300 consumer gadgets.

BlackBerry, the US technology company, is likely to have paid millions for the right to play a cover version of the 1967 "flower power" song in a series of TV adverts for its smartphones.

One online critic wrote: "The idea of using this song to sell a product is distasteful enough, but BlackBerry uses a cover version with a whiny vocal that is so annoying that the song actually elicits hatred."

Another complained: "It sounds horrible. It's disgusting that companies are trying to make money off the Beatles just because of the new release of their albums." "People should stop using Beatles songs (and bad covers at that) to commercialise their stupid products," said another.

For decades owners of the Beatles back catalogue have refused album compilers, as well as radio and TV advertisers, the rights to use Beatles tunes but, in 2008, Sony/ATV announced it was making 259 Beatles compositions available to advertisers.

It is unclear whether Paul McCartney or Yoko Ono, John Lennon's widow, approved use of "All You Need is Love". Last year, Sony/ATV said it had a "moral obligation" to contact them before giving approving to such projects.

BlackBerry and Sony/ATV declined to comment.

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