Monday, July 30, 2007

Bow to your cotton khaki-panted Master.

(click ad to read)
The cubicle slave farm? Amy found this Intel ad at penciledn.com—and I, for one, am outraged at the tech company for implying that, without their Core™2 Duo Processor, I am a slow white man (even if it is true). Fellow Crackers? I am calling for a boycott of all Intel products. Join me, in this noble fight against reverse racism!
ad agency: those Liars at McCann.
crn picked up on the ad.
previously in race in advertising:
1. Nice package!
2. R&R, minus R&B.
3. Diversity has a mascot.
4. TimeWarner hires white killers, white freaks...
5. AdAge's White Christmas.

33 Comments:

Blogger Jay said...

Are they supposed to be bowing to him? or ready to run... across tot he next cube? it looks like they're all rowers on a slave ship. Just stupid.

12:55 PM  
Blogger Middle Name: Stanley said...

This is a train wreck on SO many levels. But I'm pretty impressed that the agency behind this was able to find a set of African-American sextuplet track runners. Why haven't I heard of these guys?

2:07 PM  
Blogger mopar_man said...

Holy crap. People really need to stop looking for a "deeper meaning" in advertising. Like it says, it's multiplying computer performance, hence the 6 guys. Who cares what colour their skin is.

3:55 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

It would be fun to fire off a starting pistol and see how many heads collide.

3:59 PM  
Blogger copyranter said...

gee thanks mopar_man for your expert ad interpretation——which is one out of about 10 possible readings of this shitty ad.

4:09 PM  
Blogger Brooks said...

Wow, I wouldn't mess with these guys come Employee Picnic time. Can you imagine those poor bastards in accounts payable going up against this squad in tug of war?

As for interpretation, it looks like the typical position for cubicle dwellers - bent over - with some creepy middle manager flashing his creepy smile.

4:43 PM  
Anonymous Nadeem said...

if its true then i will never purchase product manufactured by INTEL.
but if it just plain AD...then...
INTEL is SHAMLESS.....
will throw my INTEL PC into garbage
and will get a new AMD COMPUTER.

2:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well aren’t all companies just a little racist? Although in my experience multiplying the number of black people that work for you won't speed things up at around the office.

5:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it reminds me of the following:

http://cache.consumerist.com/consumer/upload/2006/07/sony_whiteiscoming_ad_large.jpg
via Sony

http://www.mirandala.org/images/wongs.jpg
via A&F

Unfortunately it's nothing new.

9:27 AM  
Blogger Middle Name: Stanley said...

I don't think Intel intended for this ad to be racist. However, you have to consider how your audience may or may not interpret your work. You have to look at it from all angles. Sure, it may LOOK like a pretty picture up close. But then you take a step back, and suddenly you realize that you've drawn a gigantic penis. (And then you giggle a little bit.)

10:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stop using the term "Reverse Racism". There is only racism, period. "Reverse Racism" implies that the only REAL racism in the world is that committed by whites against other races, which is bullshit.

11:05 AM  
Blogger copyranter said...

Hey thanks, Mr. Tutu.

11:22 AM  
Anonymous Fishback said...

The athlete closely resembles Justin Gatlin who is the current co-record holder of the 100m sprint with Asafa Powell. For those not in the know the 100m sprint record holder is often regarded as the "fastest man in the world."

-1

12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You think that's bad? I've worked in around 8 agencies in London. Total number of black colleagues - 3. Total number in creative - 0.

1:12 PM  
Blogger Beau Mac said...

racism is not cool, but it is funny to me in art. so sad this western world.

7:00 PM  
Blogger Daniel said...

I'm dying to know The Assimilated Negro's take on this.

7:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you reverse the "racial" makeup of this ad. Meaning, if mr. khaki whitey becomes mr. chocolate khaki and the athletes become white sprinters (sic). Problem solved.

9:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You don't even need to do that- just reverse the people. White khaki guys crouched down at the blocks, black sprinter standing like the overlord. No, it doesn't make any sense, but it would make you stop and scratch your head for a couple minutes.

10:43 AM  
Anonymous assimilated said...

I hope Intel's intent was not to have the ad percieved as racist, yet, the set up is open to misinterpretation. There are mega-million other ways to convey speed.

Just as Imus' insensitivity created problems, this lack of sensitivity regarding potential interpretation, from a serious business entity like Intel is a mistake. This is not the Chapelle Show....

Have a multicultural group of runners, without the dorky guy, all lined up going in the same direction, if you've got to stick with the theme.

Yes, African-Americans have historically been the fastest sprinters, but why open that can of worms....Remember Jimmy The Greek, Al Campanis, Howard Cosell and their statements - they all stepped in it deep with their statements, two got fired from their jobs...then Imus...


Sorry Mopar_Man...this is why companies have diversity training, why the Ad industry is under fire for lack of multicultural hiring, etc. etc. This is serious business... not The Chapelle Show...and even there, Dave himself had to walk away because his "integrity" became compromised by the insensitivity of the controlling network.

10:49 AM  
Anonymous Lisa said...

Wow. I spent 20 years as an agency copywriter and I can't believe this size-13-foot-in-the-mouth managed to make it through all the levels of nitpickers and get produced. My clients used to parse the most innocuous ad to the point of insanity before they'd approve it...not to mention run it through focus groups, which, while we considered them the bane of our existence, would surely have picked this up. Yes, it may be a famous athlete (?) and yes, the design works better if all the runners are identical, but please. The racist symbolism is obviously unintentional, but that's almost worse for intel. I mean, think about it: I'm supposed to buy a processor--the brain of my computer--from people dumb enough to run this ad?

4:57 PM  
Anonymous Jexy said...

http://www.buzzfeed.com/buzz/Racist_Ads

Would it be different if the guy was wearing black pants?

9:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Doesn't scream out racist to me. It just looks ill-conceived. There weren't 6 different black sprinters, but one sprinter duplicated and reversed to make it look like 6 sprinters. I'm willing to bet this was made by a European ad agency, since track and field is more popular there than in America, and they wouldn't have considered American nuances, that could make it seem distasteful.

Two other examples of that come to mind:
1. Electrolux, a Swedish vaccuum maker had a slogan "Nothing sucks like an Electrolux."

2. Panasonic tried to make a browser/internet search engine and used Woody Woodpecker as their mascot. Their slogan was, "touch Woody, your internet pecker."

When ignorance or incompetance sufficiently explain the circumstance, don't look for malice.

10:31 AM  
Blogger Adam said...

They've apparently now apologized: As reported here

11:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have a world record athlete. Multiplied over to show multi core technology in a setting that shows an office. The ad makes sense to me. I'd like to see some of the ads that fellow bloggers have put out and see how they stack up. That being said, the only thing this agency and Intel are guilty of is giving us the benefit of the doubt that we're not racist and would only focus on what color each person was. I'm sure it crossed their minds and they took a step back and said, is our audience and america still prejudice and racist to the point that the only thing they will read into this ad is the white guy standing tall while the black man bowing? and they gave us the credit and believed that we were past race as the measuring stick for everything we see. I guess they were wrong. Sad...

7:08 PM  
Blogger copyranter said...

hey anon person from Intel or McCann: every fucking ad I've ever done in my life has been infinitely better than this piece of communications SHIT.

8:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for this post. I checked out some of the other links to posts about race in the ad industry. I'm sorry but not surprised to see that not much has changed since I was a AAAA's Minority Intern (now called "Multicultural Intern"), in 1983. I worked in the industry for only 4 years before bailing out. It didn't take long to get tired of, when chatting with 2 other African American women, being accused of plotting to take over the agency. Or having my bosses check and make sure it was OK to invite clients to a show that they might have found offensive - a review of 1940's music that had (shockingly) 2 black people in the cast. I heard someone at a AAAA's meeting wonder why the numbers of people of color were still so low - what was happening to the interns? The industry was happening to the interns.

1:45 AM  
Blogger Adam said...

This ad is so bad that people are doubting whether it's real: Snopes

9:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The mental suggestion that we are meant to conjure--namely, that black sprinters are necessarily associated with the abilty to rapidly process information, is indeed amusing. http://podblanc.com

6:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

my opinion is whatever Intel meant by that ad - they're certainly achieving their aim to PROMOTE their product and themselves.

I'm 100% sure their intention was to create a provocative ad, which not only tells people about their new product and its advantages, but also to make people speak about it over and over again, go google it, read other ppl's comments and comment.

Bad fame is still fame, isn't it?
i'm a bit disappointed with Intel thou, thought their marketing is more creative and EDUCATED than what it takes to create such an ad.

I won't refuse using their soft and processors, because cheap marketing ploys don't make Soft and hardware any worse. As well as the vice versa - excellent ads don't make crappy products any better

10:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

All You fvckers are racists azzholes... I can't believe some of the comments I'm seeing here.... "They look like rowers on the slave ship"???? "Having more black people around the office doesn't speed things up?" FVCK you guys!

11:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I bet they have a killer company softball team.

5:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a Black man that works in the advertising business I can tell you that this ad is a perfect example of why you need diversity in our business. I guarantee every person in the room that came up with and approved this ad was probably white. There was no one else there that would have a different perspective on the ad. The first time I saw it it gave me chills. I would of mentioned why right away.

Funny...I almost ended up working on the Intel account before it went to McCann. I'm so glad I turned that offer down.

1:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see an out of shape white guy standing there wishing to himself that he was a competition level track athlete as well.
Lame people see what they want to see. He could be the janitor for all we know.
Who cares. Is he cracking a whip?
Are the runners in rags?

Dumb ad regardless.

11:38 AM  

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