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    Thread: VW Removes and Apologizes for an Admittedly Racist Ad on Instagram

    1. 05-22-2020 10:18 AM #76
      Quote Originally Posted by UncleJB View Post
      Was this shown on any other outlet than Instagram? Makes me wonder if there is less oversight on social media posts than there would be on a full fledged commercial. With social media moving so fast I am curious about whether more liberties can be taken by whomever is running their accounts.

      I also find it odd that Volkswagen has two Instagram accounts posting different content. There is @vw and @volkswagen The apology only is posted on the @vw account.
      It was on Twitter too.

      You may be right about the lax oversight standards on the digital stuff.

      I wonder how many sets of eyes saw it during development and approval,
      and how in the hell did they not see?

      The ad is a layer cake of stupidity with elements so bad that you'd think it was parody or somethin'.

      Apparently it was for the German-speaking market,
      but filmed in South America.

      Petit Colon is a real cafe in Buenos Aires.



      That sorta adds another angle to the grotesqueness of it all due to Argentina's association with harboring escaped Nazis.

      https://www.thoughtco.com/why-did-ar...minals-2136579

      .

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    3. How do I resize a picture? Cabin Pics's Avatar
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      05-22-2020 10:53 AM #77
      Besides all the other stuff people are digging up, without any of the words or "ok" symbols, yada yada.... Just the white hand moving the black guy around is enough for it to not be PC in 2020.

      You can argue about the rest of it all day, but the defining moment was white hand, little black man getting pushed around by white hand.

      Bad job VW, bad job.
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      05-22-2020 10:58 AM #78
      Quote Originally Posted by Sporin View Post
      Excerpt for when avowed racists use it in a very racist manner it's certainly correct to object to it, right? I mean, the swastika used to be a symbol of well being before it was adopted by the Nazis but you wouldn't hang a flag of it outside your house and expect that people would assume you are just wishing them well.

      Times change, so do meanings of symbols. Denying those changes don't make them go away.

      I get that this symbol has long had other, not-nefarious meanings, it's a dang Apple emoji for goodness sake. "ok" 👌 But this has gone beyond a 4chan joke and is widely used by actual White Nationalists now.

      The ADL does a really good job of explaining the origins, the various meanings, and why you shouldn't jump to conclusions about it's use. I would hope we can all agree that it's a reasonable take.

      https://www.adl.org/education/refere...y-hand-gesture

      Personally, I've stopped using it, because I'd rather not risk being misinterpreted. It's not like it's hard, or that my life is made worse for not using it.

      Now, as for the ad, it's not very good and shows a startling lack of understanding by the Ad and PR agencies responsible for it.

      More:
      How did the OK sign become a symbol of white supremacy?
      Gesture been used as positive symbol for centuries before being hijacked by alt-right
      Vanessa Swales
      Tuesday 17 December 2019
      https://www.independent.co.uk/news/w...-a9249846.html
      Good points, I do not disagree, but will say this:

      Ceasing the use due to possible derogatory interpretation only enables its use for that purpose. I therefore disagree with simply letting the backwoods individuals that would utilize it as such have it. Perfect example is the Swatzitka, albeit for good reason, a symbol that stood for hope/well being/never ending life for centuries and across different cultures was turned into an undeniable symbol of hate in a matter of less than a few decades. I mean there is literally a room in the vatican that has a floor to ceiling tile swaztika pattern, I can assure you the room pre-dates the Nazi regime and has absolutely no negative connotation, but man oh man, the looks of people when they see that.

      Meanings and use of things change, it doesn't mean we should roll over and let trash people ruin harmless things.
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    5. Geriatric Member BRealistic's Avatar
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      05-22-2020 12:24 PM #79
      Quote Originally Posted by stiggy-pug View Post
      I wonder how many sets of eyes saw it during development and approval,
      and how in the hell did they not see?


      .
      Makes me wonder if possibly a real life Crazy People situation occurred- a senior person created and ok'd it before everybody realized they were off their rocker.

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      05-22-2020 12:33 PM #80
      I would like to point out that the "okay" symbol is already a derogatory gesture in many countries including Latin America meaning "butt-hole". The alternative and more commonly used hand gesture for "okay" is the thumbs-up

      As for the VW ad- there is a team of marketing people who collectively put these ads together. You're going to tell me none of them caught any of these things? Nope. Whatever point or hype they wanted to achieve with this ad at least they got TCL and social media talking about it

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      05-22-2020 01:13 PM #81
      Quote Originally Posted by unhappymeal View Post
      Are you being facetious?
      I was reading letters left-to-right, top-to-bottom.

      If I read them in the order the fade in, then I get GENER.
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    8. Member vwpiloto's Avatar
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      05-22-2020 01:21 PM #82
      Quote Originally Posted by JET70 View Post
      The man of color that acted in the Ad didn't seem to have a problem with it.
      Right. Because he had full editorial discretion over the ad, and he knew that in the final ad that a white hand would be flicking him away.

      /s

      On a related note, from my time in Brazil some years back, I stopped using the "Ok" sign, because there it stood for "a-hole," which when you consider that white supremacists are now using it, it's somewhat poetic. Brazilians us the thumbs up instead, which is what I started doing and it stuck. It's a good, easy alternative to the "Ok" sign.

      Edit: I totally missed bomardi's post above.

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      05-22-2020 01:33 PM #83
      Quote Originally Posted by GLI Dan View Post
      Good points, I do not disagree, but will say this:

      Ceasing the use due to possible derogatory interpretation only enables its use for that purpose. I therefore disagree with simply letting the backwoods individuals that would utilize it as such have it. Perfect example is the Swatzitka, albeit for good reason, a symbol that stood for hope/well being/never ending life for centuries and across different cultures was turned into an undeniable symbol of hate in a matter of less than a few decades. I mean there is literally a room in the vatican that has a floor to ceiling tile swaztika pattern, I can assure you the room pre-dates the Nazi regime and has absolutely no negative connotation, but man oh man, the looks of people when they see that.

      Meanings and use of things change, it doesn't mean we should roll over and let trash people ruin harmless things.
      Visit my grandparents in India I didn't understand why Grandpa (a Hindu, a vegetarian, a school principle, and a pacifist) was a Nazi - the wall calendar had big swastikas at all four corners! One of my first history lessons as a kid about appropriation.

      If you look at how the Vatican acted during the rise of fascism in Italy and Germany, how it refused to take a stand knowing what was happening - the oversized pattern might as well have been tacit approval - but that's a discussion for another message board.

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      05-22-2020 04:46 PM #84
      Quote Originally Posted by r_fostoria View Post
      Regardless of the race relations implications, what is the ad about anyway? Who is that guy, and why are the hands flicking him? I don't think I'd get this ad even if it were in script form.

      Also, anything with a slide whistle in it should be banned anyway.
      Who would this ad appeal to, and why? It's certainly not about the car. Kudos to VW for owning up to racism, but what's the other side of it?

    11. 05-23-2020 11:23 AM #85
      It is odd to encounter such blatant racism in advertising in the 21st century.

      This ad may possibly be #1 if we were to do a worst offender list:



      But I think the Golf 8 spot would deffo be somewhere in the top ten.

    12. 05-23-2020 11:44 AM #86
      VW needs to do something to distract people from looking at this car, using a racist ad to do so ain't the way forward though.

      And yellow? Wow, that color just accentuates the ugly:


    13. 05-23-2020 01:49 PM #87
      Quote Originally Posted by Sporin View Post
      Excerpt for when avowed racists use it in a very racist manner it's certainly correct to object to it, right? I mean, the swastika used to be a symbol of well being before it was adopted by the Nazis but you wouldn't hang a flag of it outside your house and expect that people would assume you are just wishing them well.

      Times change, so do meanings of symbols. Denying those changes don't make them go away.

      I get that this symbol has long had other, not-nefarious meanings, it's a dang Apple emoji for goodness sake. "ok" 👌 But this has gone beyond a 4chan joke and is widely used by actual White Nationalists now.

      The ADL does a really good job of explaining the origins, the various meanings, and why you shouldn't jump to conclusions about it's use. I would hope we can all agree that it's a reasonable take.

      https://www.adl.org/education/refere...y-hand-gesture

      Personally, I've stopped using it, because I'd rather not risk being misinterpreted. It's not like it's hard, or that my life is made worse for not using it.

      Now, as for the ad, it's not very good and shows a startling lack of understanding by the Ad and PR agencies responsible for it.

      More:
      How did the OK sign become a symbol of white supremacy?
      Gesture been used as positive symbol for centuries before being hijacked by alt-right
      Vanessa Swales
      Tuesday 17 December 2019
      https://www.independent.co.uk/news/w...-a9249846.html
      Actually, people do just that in a lot of Asian countries to this day. I visit Japan often and see that symbol there and they don't care that Hitler used it or Jews find it offensive because it's been with them way before than the Nazis soiled its meaning. Even living in NYC I see the symbol in a lot of building architecture and no one complains. They've just been there for a long time and people understand that.

    14. 05-23-2020 04:50 PM #88
      Quote Originally Posted by Reisner View Post
      Actually, people do just that in a lot of Asian countries to this day. I visit Japan often and see that symbol there and they don't care that Hitler used it or Jews find it offensive because it's been with them way before than the Nazis soiled its meaning. Even living in NYC I see the symbol in a lot of building architecture and no one complains. They've just been there for a long time and people understand that.
      Symbols alone can indeed be harmless or misconstrued but that's not the casexwity this ad. It's the context in which the imagery was displayed as a whole that made it racist.

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      05-23-2020 06:56 PM #89
      Quote Originally Posted by Reisner View Post
      Actually, people do just that in a lot of Asian countries to this day. I visit Japan often and see that symbol there and they don't care that Hitler used it or Jews find it offensive because it's been with them way before than the Nazis soiled its meaning. Even living in NYC I see the symbol in a lot of building architecture and no one complains. They've just been there for a long time and people understand that.
      It is everywhere in Asia. It is a positive symbol in both Hinduism and Buddhism, the western world looks at it completely differently.

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      05-23-2020 07:17 PM #90
      I like to give the benefit of the doubt but with the details others have pointed out, I can't side with VW.

      But let's talk "Swastika Wheels"

      Honda Accord


      Granted Japan was part of the Axis powers, but given the prevalence of the machined face/black inset wheel fad, it would seem any directional spoke wheel is worthy of the same criticism. That seems like a stretch, where as the ad contains a real subliminal jab.

    17. 05-23-2020 07:53 PM #91
      I don't think this was an accident, but in any case now the social justice warriors are giving the culprits what they want.
      All the hands thrown up in the air with indignation scurrying to virtue signal, you just know they are laughing at them.
      They took the bait and gobbled it down.

    18. 05-23-2020 09:14 PM #92
      Quote Originally Posted by OBDlll View Post
      I don't think this was an accident, but in any case now the social justice warriors are giving the culprits what they want.
      All the hands thrown up in the air with indignation scurrying to virtue signal, you just know they are laughing at them.
      They took the bait and gobbled it down.
      No, this has zero to do with any social justice warriors and there's no virtue signaling here. Those two regurgitated sound bites are irrelevant to and have zero effect on what happened here.

      The reactions and messages against this ad were loud and indignant from none other than Volkswagen itself. After they tried to defend it of course, but eventually they came around. Kinda sad, right?

      And no, the people who made the ad didn't need to do it for publicity, if you're even slightly familiar with the internet you know such material is wide spread and readily available.

      What you're missing is that yes, such people who like this do exist, the fact that it was done with people at Volkswagen backing it and letting it get out us what all the furor is about.

      This isn't about overly sensitive people reacting and giving this light, no, this is about Volkswagen's continued public embarrassments reaching the masses and how crazy that is for a global company. Especially one with a history such as Volkswagen has. It's a bad pattern.

      Volkswagen is promoting the new Golf 8 that will be sold the world over and somehow this gets by marketing?

      No lives were lost here and in the big scheme of things, if diesel gate didn't kill Volkswagen (it did cost them billions though), this will barely register. The news cycle has already passed it by.

      But this will be added to commentary you'll read about Volkswagen news going forward. It's negative baggage, something you don't need when selling cars. Especially here in a market where they're a niche player trying to be noticed for something good.

    19. 05-23-2020 10:41 PM #93
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      05-23-2020 10:51 PM #94
      All this banter about swastikas is retarded diversion.

      Let's look at the facts:
      White hand flicks black man away.
      Word appears which is an anagram for 'neger'.

      This is terrible. Whoever thought of this as proper ad copy is brain dead or racist.

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      05-24-2020 10:22 AM #95
      Besides this ad being super racist, I cant even see what the point of it was? If you didn’t know it was a VW ad, what you know what they were even advertising?

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      05-24-2020 11:37 AM #96
      Quote Originally Posted by vwlifer27 View Post
      Besides this ad being super racist, I cant even see what the point of it was? If you didn’t know it was a VW ad, what you know what they were even advertising?
      It makes the ad all the more damning. The message is to a specific audience saying "Buy our car. We're okay with racism ".

    23. 05-24-2020 11:48 AM #97
      Quote Originally Posted by vwlifer27 View Post
      Besides this ad being super racist, I cant even see what the point of it was? If you didn’t know it was a VW ad, what you know what they were even advertising?
      You would think that Volkswagen doesn't want black people in their cars or even anywhere near them and that Volkswagen feels so little of black people as to all them the "N" word. They're advertising racist, ignorant and hateful intolerance.

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      05-24-2020 12:37 PM #98
      Quote Originally Posted by vwlifer27 View Post
      Besides this ad being super racist, I cant even see what the point of it was? If you didn’t know it was a VW ad, what you know what they were even advertising?

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      05-24-2020 12:38 PM #99
      Quote Originally Posted by unhappymeal View Post
      It makes the ad all the more damning. The message is to a specific audience saying "Buy our car. We're okay with racism ".
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      05-24-2020 05:16 PM #100
      Quote Originally Posted by StressStrain View Post
      All this banter about swastikas is retarded diversion.

      Let's look at the facts:
      White hand flicks black man away.
      Word appears which is an anagram for 'neger'.

      This is terrible. Whoever thought of this as proper ad copy is brain dead or racist.
      How else would anyone write script for an add about the new Golf without using the words the new Golf?

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