Presented Without Comment

An ad from the Netherlands:

(click to enlarge)

Consider this an open thread.

Found via blackfolks.

ETA: I said I wouldn’t comment, but I lied. Someone pointed me to this article, which elicited this response:

Sony is being disingenuous about the message their ad for the White PSP is sending. They may not have intended for the ad to be racist, but they cannot now deny that it DOES have racist undertones. You cannot use such highly charaged images and then claim complete ignorance of how they might be percieved. And by denying that anyone should be offended by the ads they’ve pretty much said that they don’t care how the ad makes people feel as long as folks buy the product. That’s crap. That’s also irresponsible. Step up and admit that the campaign wasn’t thought through carefully and either take down the ads or at least apologize. The spin only serves to alienate buyers.

8 Responses

  1. I can’t imagine what they were thinking when they approved this, except as a cynical ploy to get people talking about it.

  2. hello, it’s good idea

  3. What’s a good idea?

  4. is it ok if i post here?

  5. Depends, what do you want to post?

  6. (… a million years late… O_o)

    Wow… that ad is just… wow.

    I am posting because I was reminded of this ad when recently I saw the trailer for Resident Evil 5. Basically, it features Chris Redfield (a white guy in a military outfit) shooting a bunch of crazed African people/zombies. But if you didn’t know the context, and weren’t familiar with the Resident Evil storyline, it could very easily just look like some white military guy fighting off a bunch of angry black people:

    It got me thinking about video games and the whole video game industry. I mean, you hear a lot about the sexism in videogames (which is incredibly blatant, and which nobody ever *does* anything about — it’s impossible for me to pick up a gaming mag without feeling objectified, degraded, and insulted).

    But you hardly hear anything in the gaming world about the blatant racism (which combines with sexism on the rare occasion that a woman of color is featured, as here: http://images.ciao.com/iuk/images/products/normal/398/product-5333398.jpg The subtitle for the advert is: “Only thing is, one of you has to be the chick” — referring to the black woman with breasts as large as her skull)

    There are few PoC in console games, and the ones I have seen have generally been stereotypes (such as of course the requisite black-guy-who-dies). I think video games are actually *worse* than Hollywood and the media (quite a feat), which is disturbing because they are so popular with young people. The fact that an ad like this was released… well, it still surprises me. But given the material in games and the attitudes of gamers, I can’t say it’s completely unexpected.

  7. Ico,

    Oh, people noticed the RE5 ad. My own thoughts on it are here.

  8. Thanks for the link! That was refreshing to read. When I Googled about it, I mostly came across forums full of incredibly racist and defensive posts that make me… really worry about the future of video gaming, honestly.

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