Monday, May 30, 2016

Excitement, Motivation and Call for Action in a Chinese Detergent Advertisement Gone Wrong

By Tom Okure, Ph.D
Date: May 30, 2016


Any advertisement seeking to generate an emotional audience response should always consider the impact on its audience and viewers. This recent Chinese detergent advertisement was perhaps intended to be humorous but had the unintended negative consequence of generating an uproar in social media and around the world and resurrecting a long time assertion about inherent and arrogant Chinese racist tendencies especially towards black people.

Was the motivation of the Chinese’s advertising firm behind this racist advertisement sheer ignorance or purposeful, blatant racism? And what about the Chinese regulatory agency that approved this advertisement, in view of the increasing role of China in the global world stage as a world economic power house of ideas promoting tolerance and equality of persons. Is this the image that China wants to promote globally? Should the Chinese’s regulatory agency consider implementing new rules and setting advertising boundaries of what is acceptable or not acceptable in advertisements, or is this a deliberate ploy and attack by foreign media to simply to mistreat China? You decide.