DURBAN - The cultural education and PR storm for retailer H&M seems to be far from over after the global clothing chain apologised for an advertisement that has been widely slammed as racially insensitive.
H&M has come under fire for a recent advertisement which features a black child wearing a hoodie that has the words "coolest monkey in the jungle" printed on it.
The company (Hennes and Mauritz) has since apologised and taken down the advertisement, following public uproar.
Prominent black celebrities like The Weeknd, LeBron James and Diddy tweeted about the advertisement saying that they were offended by it and Diddy called it disrespectful. But some celebrities have taken to hitting the chain where it hurts, it's revenue stream.
Singer, The Weeknd publicly announced that he will no longer be working with/supporting the clothing brand.
The outrage has not been lost on South-African celebrities either, musician Thandiswa Mazwai also tweeted her severance with the brand, tweeting that she would never walk into an H&M store again.
Just last year there were a few advertisements that made the headline for being racist.
One such company was Unilever brand Dove.
The Dove commercial showed a black woman, wearing a brown T-shirt that she later takes off her. After she removes the T-shirt the black woman is turned into a white woman. Dove later apologised for the advertisemnet.
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The controvertial Nivea ad depicted a black woman using a Nivea product which had the tagline "visibly lightens". The Nivea advert was deemed racist by social media users. One social media user said, "Nivea can't get away with pushing this skin lightening agenda across Africa".
Next is the Pepsi campaign which featured popular model, Kendall Jenner. The advertisement depicts a photo shoot that is halted by protesters.
Jenner then joins the protesters and comes face-face with a police officer. Jenner then offers the police officer a Pepsi which he accepts.
Many people felt that the ad appropriated the Black Lives Matter movement. The advert received backlash from people on social media who felt that it was ridiculous that Black Lives Matters issues could be solved by a can of Pepsi.
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- BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE