German car maker Volkswagen has pulled social media ads and apologized after online counterattacks slamming clips as racist.
The 10-second video post, which was shared on Instagram, is intended to advertise the latest Golf models.
It showed the giant white man’s hand pushing a black man away from the new car, then moving it to the open door by pinning his head, and flicking it into a cafe.
Viewers also noted that the letters floating in the video clip faded in such a way that they seemed to spell the word offensive to people of color in Germany.
Other social media users were offended by the sign above the building where the man disappeared, which read “Petit Colon”, a reference to colonialism.
In der neuen #VW-Werbung wird rein zufällig ein schwarzer Mann von einer weißen Hands and und geschubst und anschließend in ein Haus mit der Überschrift “petit colon” geschnipst. Die ersten eingegeben Buchstaben ergeben das N-Wort. pic.twitter.com/XnqSM41IIQ
– Felix Edeha (@ FelixEd93) May 19, 2020
Translation: In a new VW ad, a black man was accidentally pushed here and there by a white hand and flicked into a building marked ‘petit colon’, the letters entered first to form the word N. I could vomit, write Twitter users.
After social media protests, Volkswagen apologized.
“Without question: the video is inappropriate and tasteless,” he said Wednesday in a statement.
“We will clarify how things like this can happen, and there will be consequences.”
Many viewers said they did not believe that the clip was left on the air.
“This is bad and racist communication,” said one Instagram user.
“The people who made this knew exactly what they were doing,” wrote a Twitter user.
Al Jazeera and the news agency
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