This one a brouhaha between a Korean Tobacco Company and the Africa Tobacco Producers Council.
Not a good job of winning friends and influencing. Obviously the Korean company didn’t “get” how the imagery might be insulting…
Nice to know Americans aren’t the only idiots out there.
One has to wonder though – if this company’s Marcom department all got their degrees from one of the private conservative colleges in the US. I mean – most real colleges talk about things like diversity and cultural sensitivity as part of Marketing 101, which are verboten topics in the conservative universe. And is one of the reasons conservatives constantly make complete asses of themselves when talking to anyone except over 60 year old white men. Ergo, if I want to market a product to any audience which includes Japanese…
I really don’t want to use the racist imagery common in the US during WWII
The part of this which is disappointing is that this sort of thing has been the subject of criticism of Asian Marketing before in China and Malaysia
Following cries of racism, South Korea’s largest tobacco company is pulling an advertisement for its new “This Africa” cigarettes.
The KT&G ads featuring a monkey dressed as a human were launched a month ago to promote the brand’s new “This Africa” cigarettes, according to the Agence France-Presse. The ads to promote cigarettes dried and roasted in “traditional” African style showed monkeys dressed as humans, tagged with the slogan “Africa is coming!”
Zambian Mirriam Simasiku, an African woman living in Seoul, told the Korea Times she found the ads extremely offensive.
“According to those images, Africans are just a bunch of uneducated monkeys,” she told the publication. “We as Africans are still a minority against a multitude of pure Koreans with no law to protect us. By the way, it is named This Africa, which is inappropriate since no one thought of making any connection.”