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Thread: Supposedly Racist KFC Ads

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    Hall of Fame Member Ikki's Avatar
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    Supposedly Racist KFC Ads

    I didn't know where to start this thread, but thought I'd do it here. There are allegations that KFC has made racist ads in Australia stereotyping blacks as unruly being pacified by chicken. These cricket ads were being played in the recent West Indies series versus Australia. TYT (Youtube channel/partners) have commented on them and you can see below:

    YouTube - Racist KFC Ad in Australia
    YouTube - Australia Comes After TYT On Racist KFC Ad

    I've already responded there several times trying to give the Americans some context but it seems like they just don't get how it is simply not racist to us nor that it was not meant to be racist. It's an aussie fan in a rival fan's section and is nervous because of it. He gives chicken to save himself from any supposed wrath and they become friends.

    I thought I'd ask people here who not only follow cricket but are from different countries to give their two cents. Do TYT have a case, or are they just oblivious and without the facts?
    Last edited by Ikki; 07-01-2010 at 11:43 AM.
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    International Regular Jayzamann's Avatar
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    I don't like making it apparent that I watch the 7pm Project, but they made some good points last night.

    Sure, it wasn't racist at all in context, for the Australian market it was made for, but KFC is an international brand, and sells chicken in places where such an ad is considered racist. Negative PR, gone viral the way it has now, is much more detrimental without pulling the ad.

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    Hall of Fame Member Ikki's Avatar
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    Even though KFC is an international brand, it would be fair to assume that their Australian ads - ads that target Australians - are made by Australians. They aren't making ads that Americans may be sensitive to. They are making ads to sell fried chicken to Australians. That's where I think the above critique is just unreasonable.

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    Harbhajan - Symonds principle to apply here.


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    Englishman BoyBrumby's Avatar
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    It's only really "racist" if one immediately thinks of black people eating nothing but fried chicken bollocks pieces.

    If there is such an association in Australia (or the UK) it'd only be second-hand from American tv.
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    Global Moderator Fusion's Avatar
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    This commercial will obviously be considered racist in the US. I understand the point that it was made for an Australian audience, by a presumably Australian ad company. However, in this global economy (even the company in question here is American), I canít fathom how they wouldnít recognize the racist symbolism in the commercial. I just think itís unlikely that not one person associated with the making of this commercial (whether someone at KFC or the ad company) knew about the racist connotations. To me, itís more likely they simply ignored the racist material and thought it was a funny ad that wouldnít cause any controversy (since itís confined just to Australia).

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    Englishman BoyBrumby's Avatar
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    To see it as racist presupposes the negative connotations of black people eating fried poultry derivatives tho and I imagine the chaps at KFC might have a bit of a blind spot in that regards.

    I mean, if it were English or Indian fans the Aussie was amongst, would anyone consider it racist? Not IMHO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    It's only really "racist" if one immediately thinks of black people eating nothing but fried chicken bollocks pieces.

    If there is such an association in Australia (or the UK) it'd only be second-hand from American tv.
    Conversely it could also be percieved as KFC is a "exclusive" product and "elevates" the black people to "civilized" audienceship. I don't understand the motive of that ad. There is no doubt in my mind that it indeed portrayed the dancing West Indians antics as some sort of a laughworthy "inferior" bunch. To think otherwise would mean KFC purposefully showed it's product to be hypocritical, elitist and pompous which is hard to accept they did intend.
    Last edited by Sir Alex; 07-01-2010 at 12:35 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    To see it as racist presupposes the negative connotations of black people eating fried poultry derivatives tho and I imagine the chaps at KFC might have a bit of a blind spot in that regards.

    I mean, if it were English or Indian fans the Aussie was amongst, would anyone consider it racist? Not IMHO.
    Indians are generally vegetarians so it would carry even more negative connotations.

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    Cricketer Of The Year four_or_six's Avatar
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    I actually had no idea that there was any negative connotation around black West Indians eating fried chicken. But then I don't know a lot about culture in that part of the world at all. I know now.

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    Englishman BoyBrumby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by four_or_six View Post
    I actually had no idea that there was any negative connotation around black West Indians eating fried chicken. But then I don't know a lot about culture in that part of the world at all. I know now.
    I don't think there is, specifically. If yer man had offered (racks brain for suitably West Indian foods) rice and peas or curried goat it might've been guilty of stereotyping (and I doubt KFC has either on its regular menu either), but I do think the "black people live on fried chicken" is more of an American negative stereotype.

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    International Coach wpdavid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    I don't think there is, specifically. If yer man had offered (racks brain for suitably West Indian foods) rice and peas or curried goat it might've been guilty of stereotyping (and I doubt KFC has either on its regular menu either), but I do think the "black people live on fried chicken" is more of an American negative stereotype.
    I think so, but only because I vaguely recall a fuss after Tiger Woods won the US Masters for the first time and Fuzzy Zoeller suggested that they'd be serving fried chicken in the clubhouse next time.
    Last edited by wpdavid; 07-01-2010 at 01:07 PM.

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    Global Moderator Matt79's Avatar
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    In other news, as ads must now conform to ****ed, obscure cultural norms from countries on the other side of the world were it was never intended to be shown anyway - representations of women not covered by the hijab are now banned in Australia in deference to Iranian sensitivities. Furthermore, any ad showing Catholics being forced to watch people walk around wearing orange will also be banned given the specific history in Ireland.

    Would love to see American's response if they were told that they were racist due to their representation of Muslims/Asians/any group besides blacks or Hispanics in their media. Gagfc.
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    Cricketer Of The Year The Sean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    To see it as racist presupposes the negative connotations of black people eating fried poultry derivatives tho and I imagine the chaps at KFC might have a bit of a blind spot in that regards.

    I mean, if it were English or Indian fans the Aussie was amongst, would anyone consider it racist? Not IMHO.
    Yeah, exactly - it had nothing whatsoever to do with the colour of anyone's skin and everything to do with the fact that the Aussie was sitting among "opposition" fans, and it just so happens that in this particular series the opposition are West Indies.

    I have read that when it was originally picked up and shown in America the ad was edited to remove any of the cricket references or context - does anyone know if this is correct? Would explain some (though not all) of the hysteria if that were the case.

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt79 View Post
    In other news, as ads must now conform to ****ed, obscure cultural norms from countries on the other side of the world were it was never intended to be shown anyway - representations of women not covered by the hijab are now banned in Australia in deference to Iranian sensitivities. Furthermore, any ad showing Catholics being forced to watch people walk around wearing orange will also be banned given the specific history in Ireland.

    Would love to see American's response if they were told that they were racist due to their representation of Muslims/Asians/any group besides blacks or Hispanics in their media. Gagfc.
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    Cricketer Of The Year Manee's Avatar
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    Are people genuinely offended by the fried chicken stereotype?
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