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KFC Ad -- OK for Australia, Racist for US?

1/6/2010 2:40 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Placating a crowd of black people with a bucket of chicken is considered good marketing by Kentucky Fried Chicken in Australia -- but it's causing a bit of a fervor here in the States.



The ad shows a very distressed white guy, surrounded by a crowd of black people at a cricket match, who wonders, "Need a tip when you're stuck in an awkward situation?" He gets out of the "awkward situation" by handing them a bucket of chicken.

A rep for KFC Australia told a local paper, "It is a light-hearted reference to the West Indian cricket team ... The ad was reproduced online in the US without KFC's permission, where we are told a culturally-based stereotype exists, leading to the incorrect assertion of racism."

UPDATE -- We just got this statement: "KFC Australia is removing the television advertisement that was being run in conjunction with the Australian cricket season. We apologize for any misinterpretation of the ad as it was not meant to offend anyone."

349 COMMENTS

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271.

Sam    

Only Americans can uncover a controversy in this. And the idiot TMZ staffer who wrote this. The point isn't that "a very distressed white guy" is sitting in the middle of a bunch of black people, but that an Australian cricket fan (wearing an Australian team jersey) is sitting in the West Indian cricket supporters' section. It has nothing to do with being black or white. The 44% o people (after 66,000 votes) who think this is racist need to get their heads examined. Being an American, synonymous with having no understanding of anyone else's culture, black or white, is no excuse for rampant ignorance.

1696 days ago
272.

Mikey    

314. I think the idea was that he's surrounded by supporters of the opposite team and wanted to pacify them before the match got rowdy. The stereotype that black people love fried chicken I would wager is more predominantly American and not known in Australia. It just happened to be a chicken company doing the advertising. What else did you expect them to have him hand out??

Posted at 11:04PM on Jan 6th 2010 by Josh

The white man giving hand outs to the black man and thats not racist?! I am outraged!

1696 days ago
273.

Mikey    

But I can understand if they have the white man handing out KFC to black people who live in the desert part of africa where its hard to grow food and raise chickens. But why give them the chicken but not something to drink with it? The commercial makes no sense.

1696 days ago
274.

Darren    

When will Amercians learn it isn't always about you?
This ad was for local consumption only - the Ausssie is sat in a group of lous noisy West indians and he shares his KFC to get some peace.
Yes, the West Indian supporters are black, but so what? It is about them being West Indian supporters not about them being black.
If the aussie supporter was in a crowd of Japanese or Mexicans would it be offensive? No - The commercial is about a sports contest between the nations - that one is black has no bearing.
Chicken might be a sensitive issue in the US but not here and not in the West Indies (they probably produce a similar ad for their fabulous Jerk Chicken when Australia is plating in the Caribbean)
Imposing your racial sensibilities internationally is ludicrous - what next and invasion?
Darren Linton
Australia


1696 days ago
275.

Mikey    

And they probably can't get Popeye's chicken way out there anyway.

1696 days ago
276.

Les    

Dear America,

We realize you're a little simple so I'll explain it to you. The guy is in a pickle as he is caught amongst the opposition supporters. Understand?

And if you think that black people eating chicken is racist then maybe you have a problem in your own country.

It's like the skit on 'Hey Hey it's Saturday' with white guys dressed as black guys. Until that episode many of us did not realize that this used to happen in America.

So maybe you should not jump to conclusions and check things out next time. And perhaps in the future be a bit fairer to all people no matter what their colour.

I for one admit I don't know everything about American culture but I hope things are a lot fairer now. Just try and open your eyes as we are all the same species.

Take care,

Les

1696 days ago
277.

dirty diana    

i had a bucket of chicken and i ate it o-ba-ma self... redneck word of the day o-ba-ma

1696 days ago
278.

Tim    

To all you whinging yanks out there, before you claim the ad is racist and in poor taste you should understand the cricket culture and the "relationship" (something USA does not have with any other country) that is enjoyed between Australia and the West Indies. Before you cast the finger of accusation at the aussies, maybe you should reflect upon your own war on terror, the iraq war, the infiltration and kidnapping of numerous 3rd world countries and inhabitants ETC. The list could go on and on and on.
F**K AMERICA AND ALL THAT IT STANDS FOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
YOU MAKE ME SICK!!!!!YOU MAKE THE WORLD SICK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
99% of Aussies hate america with a passion.

1696 days ago
279.

Knuck Game    

Yep, it's racist. White man, black crowd going crazy over chicken. KFC, by the way, West Indies fans are not all black here in the Caribbean. America do your basketball teams have all black fans? If not, I rest my case.

1696 days ago
280.

jmc    

Firstly, The white guy in the ad was not surrounded by African Americans; he was surrounded by West Indians, who Australia happened to be playing in cricket when the ad was released. The awkward situation refers to being caught out singly amongst supporters of the team Australia was playing at the time. Americans who have no idea about cricket will not understand this reference. However, this lack of cultural awareness has not seemed to prevent many clueless people posting on this website.

Secondly, the ad was part of a broader campaign in which the same white guy gets out of other similar situations by offering those around him KFC. In other advertisements played alongside the 'racist'one, he also uses chicken to stop his noisy (white) flatmates from talking, and to distract another (white) guy so he can get hit on the head by a cricket ball. This was not a campaign run around black people and chicken.

Thirdly, there is racism in Australia. Of course, there has never been racism in the US, nor were the indigenous peoples ever treated poorly. Nor are they marginalized now. It is well known that Native Americans never experience racism nowadays, and that they live in conditions exactly equal to that of white America, and that they share the exact same educational and economic opportunities. So do all ethnic groups in America. If only Australia could learn from the non-racism of the States.

1696 days ago
281.

John    

Just another example of the USA ramming their racist black history down every other countries throat.The rest of the planet does not have to apologize for America's history,but according to gutless KFC we do.

1696 days ago
282.

Elvis Twin    

I absolutely love to drown my french fries in mayo.

1696 days ago
283.

Jono    

As an Australian can I just say (with love): the world does not revolve around you America and this advert was not designed for you. Also, racism has more to do with the intentions of those that produce the comment or in this case advertisement rather than the way it is received by an over sensitive and hypocritical (US) public.

Sometimes its best to shut your mouth and be thought a fool America than open it and remove all doubt. It is little wonder you are viewed as the loud mouth bully by a vast majority of the world.

1696 days ago
284.

Jono    

Shouldn't you Americans get back to blowing the Middle East back to the Stone Age rather than worrying about what us little, old, racist Aussies are getting up to?

1696 days ago
285.

Kez from Sydney (That's in Australia in case you didn't know)...    

1) This is not a racist ad. I am disappointed that KFC have taken it off because of whinging American's.
2) The Aussie fan is wearing a Cricket shirt not a Soccer shirt...
3) I guess some people don't understand the Australian culture and the healthy competition Australia and the West Indies have especially in regards to Cricket.
4) I find it offensive that American's call Australian's racist. I don't think they have earnt the right. Watch a game of Cricket sometime and you might learn a thing or two.

Looking forward to a great summer of Cricket!

1696 days ago
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