*Qiaobi, the Chinese firm behind the racist laundry ad that went viral last week, has issued a half-assed apology that pretty mush cements their white supremacist ideology. The firm says that the criticism over their anti-melanin advert – which depicts a black man being thrown into a washing machine by a Chinese woman and cleansed of his blackness – was fueled by the sensitive international media who exaggerated the message of the ad.
The laundry detergent advertisement went viral for showing a Chinese woman throwing a black man covered in paint into a washing machine after flirting with him. After undergoing a wash, the man emerges as a clean Chinese man.
The ad has drawn millions of views on YouTube, but Shanghai-based Qiaobi said it had “no intention of discriminating against people of color” by making the commercial. “The color of one’s skin is not the standard by which we should judge each other. We strongly oppose and condemn racial discrimination,” the company said late Saturday on it official Weibo account, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter.
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Meanwhile, China has longed pushed for a white society by heavily promoting skin bleaching creams, which is why the company earlier suggested there was nothing wrong with the racist 50-second ad.
“We meant nothing but to promote the product, and we had never thought about the issue of racism,” a spokesman told the Global Times on Friday.
China has faced similar scrutiny in recent months. In December, a promotional poster for the blockbuster movie Star Wars: The Force Awakens drew criticism after it was edited to marginalize the character played by John Boyega, who is black, per MSN.com.
The company said in a statement:
“[Due to] the harm that has been caused to members of the ethnic African communities as a result of the advertisement’s circulation and the over-dramatization by the public opinion, we hereby express our apology and sincerely hope that the internet users as well as media will not over-analyze,” the company said in a statement. “We strongly oppose and condemn racial discrimination.”
The company also said it has removed the ad online and hopes “that internet users and media will not continue to circulate it.”
“We regret that our advertisement led to controversy and have no intention of shirking our responsibility,” the statement said. “The advertisement and the surrounding controversy have hurt those of African descent, and because of this we would like to apologize.”
“We hope that Chinese brands will continue to find success in international markets,” the company added.”
Many have taken to social media to say they find the ad “offensive.”
“This type of advertising is too low. I will not buy this product,” said one Weibo user by the name of Fenglinchunyu.
“This ad is inhuman, I hope they will ban it,” said another Weibo user.
On Shanghaiist, writer Christopher Ivan suggested that the culture’s obsession with light skin played a role in the ad’s creation.
“Many Chinese people have a well-established phobia of dark skin, which unfortunately also breeds racist attitudes towards people of African descent,” he said, adding that some people view blacks as “dirty” solely because of their skin color.