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Last Updated: Tuesday, 23 January 2007, 10:14 GMT
Ninja kitten band win Coke battle
A still from the Ninja video
The animated video features dancing ninja kittens

An unsigned British band have reached a settlement with Coca-Cola over the soft drink giant's use of their material in a television commercial.

The band, 7 Seconds of Love, argued that Coke used their song Ninja and its distinctive kitten-filled video without permission in a South American advert.

After talks, Coke agreed to an out of court settlement of an undisclosed sum.

"The creative talent of 7 Seconds of Love is quite evident and we wish them all the best," said the company.

You never know, maybe we could get into the charts
7 Seconds of Love singer, Joel Veitch
"They have a policy of not litigating against bands and we came to a nice agreement," said lead singer and the video's animator, Joel Veitch.

He added that a substantial portion of the financial settlement would go to two British charities, while the rest of the money would be spent on the band.

Single release

"Ninja will be rerecorded and released in the next few weeks", Veitch said.

"It's really good for the band. You never know, maybe we could get into the charts.

"We've never had the money to do a very good job, but now we've got into a good studio and have got a fantastic management team behind us."

Still from Crusha advert
Veitch's musical cats have also appeared in adverts for Crusha
"Getting the band going would be brilliant, jumping around in front of thousands of people is better than fiddling with computers," he added.

Veitch is the creative brains behind the rathergood.com website, which has become famous for its animations.

Often featuring singing kittens and other farmyard animals, the videos won him work as a freelance animator, creating adverts for Maestro debit cards, Crusha milkshakes and Virgin trains.

The video for his band's ska-tinged song was originally created in 2005.

Fans later directed them to an advert, shown in Argentina, which appeared to have a similar look and sound.

"Whenever someone sees something that looks vaguely like my work, usually it's simply not true," Veitch told the BBC News website earlier this year.

When he saw an online version of the Coca-Cola advert, he said he was filled with "righteous anger" because the "whole work" had been copied, rather than one element, such as a melody or an animation technique.

Following the settlement, the advertisements have been taken off air, and 7 Seconds of Love retain all the rights.

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