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KFC Pulls "Racist" Australian TV spot

 
 
Eorl
 
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 04:16 am
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/2010/01/06/2010-01-06_kfc_ad_in_australia_cooks_up_racism_controversy.html

You have GOT to be joking !!!!

A commercial shown in Australia about cricket, fast food and an Australian fan in a West Indies crowd is somehow offensive to southern USA racial stereotypes !?!

SERIOUSLY!?! The USA is NOT the only culture on the planet people.

Australians see a bunch of West Indies Cricket fans surrounding an Australian cricket fan. We don't even realize that it's a lighter skinned man surrounded by darker skinned ones, because it has nothing to do with the ad!!

And KFC PULLED IT!? Cowards. Chickens!!!

This is how it was reported here:
http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/01/07/2787723.htm
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Type: Discussion • Score: 23 • Views: 33,806 • Replies: 633

 
Setanta
 
  0  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 04:52 am
There is an offensive racial stereotype associated with black people and fried chicken in the United States, although this seems to be a case of hyper-sensitivity. After all, white Southerners love fried chicken, too.

Your comment to the effect that "The USA is NOT the only culture on the planet people" is, however, unwarranted. The article you link says that objections arose after it had been viewed on Youtube, so any objections had to have been from that discrete, self-selected population. This hardly qualifies you to get on your high horse about American attitudes.

Finally, allow me to point out that the New York Daily News is a tabloid-style newspaper, for which crap like this constitutes an important news story. It hasn't risen above the event horizon in other sources, at least not yet.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 04:59 am
Your ABC article claims that "furious debate raged in the American media about whether it was racist"--while citing only the New York Daily News and the Baltimore Sun, and while quoting only the NYDN. Hardly evidence of furious debate raging in "the American media." To take a page from your book, the NYDN and the Sun cannot reasonably be taken as exemplary of the American media.
Eorl
 
  2  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 05:12 am
@Setanta,
Yeah but... they pulled the ad??
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  4  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 05:22 am
Surely you're not surprised by evidence of moral cowardice among capitalists?
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 05:25 am
@Eorl,
Quote:
We don't even realize that it's a lighter skinned man surrounded by darker skinned ones, because it has nothing to do with the ad!!


Why is a lone white man surrounded by these musically adept and loud black people? Are they at a concert- or are they at a cricket game? Why is the white guy the only one who has enough etiquette and decorum to know how to behave appropriately in the venue he's at? Why is the white guy the only one who has food to hand out and savvy or paternalistic enough to understand how to save himself and his situation that these black people are ruining for him? Why are the black people so childlike as to be quieted by a piece of chicken?

See, that's what I see - he could be handing out chocolates or peaches or potato chips. This ad depicts the white man as the sensible adult and the black people as unruly children.

I don't like it. I'm glad they pulled it.
Eorl
 
  2  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 05:41 am
@aidan,
You don't get see the other ads in the series aidan. This guy is the dude with the answers, always involving kfc. This is the first one involving West Indians because we are about to play the West Indies.

The colour of their skin has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with ANYTHING.


Australian cricket fans have HUGE admiration for the Great Cricketing Nation of the West Indies (I know, Set, not a nation). I think that's what bothers me so much about this. Sir Garfield Sobers, Joel Garner, Viv Richards, Brian Lara...legendary Windies that every Australian knows.The assumption that we would do what it is you seem to think we are doing with this ad outrages me greatly.

The West Indies supporters music, etc at the match (which they clearly are) depicted in the ad are accurate, (it's similar to Brazils supporter band at soccer matches and our guy is the lone Man United fan in the wrong seat) and I'd guess their response to free KFC would be pretty much like that too, as would anyone's.

It's a 100% racism free commercial, only ignorance or stupidity could excuse thinking otherwise.
Eorl
 
  2  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 05:48 am
@Setanta,
I guess I'm not, but it's just so... stupid!! To pull a completely racism free ad because of complaints of racism is like an admission that maybe it was a bit racist. It's makes us look pretty bad.
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  2  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 05:52 am
@Eorl,
Quote:
You don't get see the other ads in the series aidan. This guy is the dude with the answers, always involving kfc. This is the first one involving West Indians because we are about to play the West Indies.

Oh, okay that gives it a whole different slant. Funny how a little context can change everything.
But do you understand then how people who have only seen THIS particular ad might not understand the context and find it offensive?

And KFC originated in America and I'm sure has mostly American shareholders, not to mention customers. If Americans see only this particular spot - I'm sure that a lot of them will be offended and that will impact their business, as we won't be privy to the whole series as you guys are.

Just to let you know how cultural stuff can be interpreted when no offense is meant, when I first moved down south again after a long time away, I went to a Burger King with a friend and I saw they had something called a 'chicken whopper.' Well, up north we didn't have chicken whoppers - only beef and I was joking around and I said , with a put on southern accent, 'Ya'll sure do love you some chicken down here.' Well he was a black guy - he looked at me like, 'Jesus Rebecca - what's wrong with you?' I was oblivious. I said, 'What -- you guys have chicken biscuits, chicken whoppers - I love it - I'm just saying...' and he looks at me again and then it dawns on me.

I was talking about southern people - not black people. He thought I was talking about black people. I convinced him finally that I wasn't.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 06:31 am
@Eorl,
Somebody said the West Indian crowd was loud?

They should see an Oz cricket crowd.

The white guy is smarter because he's handing out deep fried ****?

What bull ****.

He's too dumb to know **** from food!



It's funny, because it took me forever to "get" that ad.

I don't watch cricket (which may be the key to all this....as it is presumably people who can't identify a cricketer who are offended), and for ages I had no idea what the awkward situation WAS.

Then, I finally noticed that the man handing out this awful "food" was white, and the rest of the crowd kind of darker.

I had no idea that the crowd was West Indian, and I still wondered what the hell the point was.

Then I wondered if it was supposed to be the colour difference....and I was utterly puzzled because that made no sense.

Then I figured they were watching sport, and the white guy must barrack for another team, perhaps? But why?

FINALLY I realized the white guy was an Oz one day cricketer, and that he was stuck in a big group of West Indies supporters!

I guess when you have no idea what is going on, you might see it as racist, if rqace is what your mind springs to....though I think it's kind of a stretch.

I am not surprised at all KFC have pulled it if it was being seen as racist on youtube or the gutter press. They don't want bad publicity, especially with the Colonel/Southern USA schmaltz they dress their lard up with.

It's kind of sad it's being seen as racist. Actually, it's very sad.


I guess it's another example of stuff having cultural baggage in the USA that it doesn't have here, and the arcane mysteries of cricket being almost unknown outside the Commonwealth!!!
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 06:50 am
@dlowan,
Yeah - like I said- context is everything.

That's why different people interpret different things differently..
Quote:
He's too dumb to know **** from food!

Not in my book - I love KFC.
And I'm happy they pulled the ad- not sad at all.

Diest TKO
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 07:00 am
I remember last year seeing a series of KFC ads that seemed to have only Asian people in them. I was confused, but then I remembered how much I love fried chickens!

Hi-yah! Kung-fu! Fried Chicken!

T
K
O
ebrown p
 
  3  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 07:08 am
@Eorl,
I agree with Eorl.

What the heck does KFC have to do with American culture?
Diest TKO
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 07:10 am
I've watched this like 10 times now. Honestly, the big picture of this make it hilarious.

I agree, this didn't need to be pulled. It's totally an awkward commercial if it was to be aired in the USA, but it isn't. If the Yum (the company that owns KFC) felt that it's existence was a liability in the states, I guess I can see why they'd want to do something though. It's not like every person who could get offended is going to have an Australian around to explain the insignificance of the commercial.

T
K
O
0 Replies
 
Diest TKO
 
  4  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 07:11 am
@ebrown p,
ebrown p wrote:
What the heck does KFC have to do with American culture?

We'll start with the 'K' standing for Kentucky.

T
K
O
ebrown p
 
  2  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 07:15 am
@Diest TKO,
Thanks Diest. You are a font of knowledge.
0 Replies
 
Green Witch
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 07:15 am
@Diest TKO,
It does create a moment of feeling that the one white guy is patronizing the black crowd. It could easily be fixed by throwing in a few white people and Diest TKO.
dlowan
 
  2  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 07:24 am
@aidan,
So...you understand it is not racist at ALL, you love the stuff, and you're STILL happy it was pulled?




dadpad
 
  2  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 07:28 am
Can you get KFC at the cricket?
I dont think so Dave.

Skin colour or race is not an issue in this advert (even as a stand alone advert aiden) for most aussie sports fans. Substitute cheesehead fans for the West Indians supporters and a lone (? who is the arch enemy?) fan from another team.
Once you have effectivly made that substitution you can see what what I see.
0 Replies
 
ebrown p
 
  -1  
Reply Thu 7 Jan, 2010 07:29 am
Australia has big problems with race issues- which makes it a bit troubling that Australians would be upset with American sensitivities.

Sure, the US is seen as being obsessed with race. But, the progress we have made at moving our society toward being more just, more inclusive and more equal can't be ignored.

The US is not perfect-- but we put these things out in the open and wrestle with them. Discussion whether ads are offensive is part of this, and companies being sensitive is not only good business sense, but public debate of these issues is good for society.

For the all the stumbling we do around race issues we do pretty darn well compared to countries like Australia.
 

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