Australia

Racially Insensitive Product Photo Brings H&M On Its Knees

Source: NY News Daily
Racially Insensitive Product Photo Brings H&M On Its Knees

The clothing retailer H&M has apologised for an image appearing in its online store that showed a black child model wearing a hooded sweatshirt that said “coolest monkey in the jungle.” The company removed the image Monday and said it would also pull the shirt from its stores worldwide.

The image was widely criticised online for its reference to a monkey, an animal that has long featured in racial and ethnic slurs. The Weeknd, a Canadian pop star of Ethiopian descent, was one of those who criticised the clothing giant, writing on Twitter that he would decline to work with the company in the future.

In a statement, H&M said it agreed with those who were “upset about the image.”

“We are deeply sorry that the picture was taken, and we also regret the actual print,” the company said in a statement. “Therefore, we have not only removed the image from our channels, but also the garment from our product offering globally.”

As of Monday afternoon, the shirt, without the original model image, was still available for sale on its British site.

The company said it would investigate how the image, which appeared in its online store in “some European markets,” and the shirt itself both came to be.

“It is obvious that our routines have not been followed properly. This is without any doubt,” the company said. “We will thoroughly investigate why this happened to prevent this type of mistake from happening again.”

But mistakes like this happen in the world of advertising with some regularity.

In October, Dove, the soap company owned by Unilever, apologised for a Facebook ad that showed a black woman removing her brown shirt to reveal a smiling white woman in a crisp white shirt underneath.

The ad was criticised for employing a racist trope that black people could use soap to clean themselves into white people. In a statement at the time, Dove said it was “committed to representing the beauty of diversity” but had “missed the mark” with its ad, which was removed from Facebook.

In April, the skin care brand Nivea pulled an ad that used the slogan “white is purity” after it was accused of racial insensitivity (and celebrated by white supremacists.)

That same week, Pepsi apologised for a television commercial featuring Kendall Jenner that was criticized for borrowing imagery from the Black Lives Matter movement. Critics said the ad trivialized the protest movement and the killings of black people by police.

Source: The New York Times 

Australia

More in Australia

The Next Gandhi is In You

ManasiJune 12, 2018

Time’s Up: What Did You Do On Earth Day?

Shivani SinghalMay 21, 2018

Squat Here. Squat There. Better Squat Everywhere.

Susheela SrinivasMay 21, 2018

Break the Silence, End the Violence

Vish ViswanathanMay 2, 2018

The Sky Isn’t The Limit For India’s Rocket Women

Susheela SrinivasMay 2, 2018

A Day For South Asian Media Minds

The Indian TelegraphMay 2, 2018

Australia India Youth Dialogue: Going Beyond The Clichéd Cs

Arijit BanerjiMay 2, 2018

Meet The Indian Power Puff Girls Of Sydney

Jyotsna SharmaMay 2, 2018

Local Cinema on Global Platter

ManasiMay 2, 2018

Western Sydney Poised To Benefit From NSW Premier’s India Visit

Vish ViswanathanApril 17, 2018

Let’s Take Yoga To Work

Susheela SrinivasApril 12, 2018

Australia India Youth Dialogue Strengthens Bilateral Ties

Scott FarlowApril 12, 2018

A Weekend In Hunter Valley

Jyotsna SharmaApril 12, 2018

To Eat Or Not To Eat

Madhusmitha KrishnamurthyApril 12, 2018

Operation Merrett To Keep NSW Drivers On Track This Easter

The Indian TelegraphMarch 28, 2018

Classical Delights For Dance Lovers

Vish ViswanathanMarch 20, 2018

“They Made Me Feel Worthless”

Aarti Kapur SinghMarch 20, 2018

Over 400 BAPS Volunteers Gear Up To Welcome Chief

Vish ViswanathanMarch 20, 2018

Pitroda In The House

The Indian TelegraphMarch 20, 2018

Love For Love’s Sake

Twinkle GhoshMarch 6, 2018

Healthy Obesity: Fact or Fiction?

Madhusmitha KrishnamurthyMarch 6, 2018