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Hilarious or hateful? Ad for Chinese Resto in Dubai comes into question

Hilarious or hateful? Ad for Chinese Resto in Dubai comes into question

China Times dares to bring out “the Chinese in anyone” in this DDB-created campaign. Is it racist? Or do some people need to take a chill pill?

December 22, 2011 4:53 by

In a world where talking about how globalized we’ve become is so passé, we all thread a fine line between being outright racist and being okay to laugh at ourselves (if even it’s while nervously checking if everyone around is laughing with you).

Now put this in an advertising context and what you’ve got is a potential fireworks display that could either garner oohs and aahs or boos and maybe even spits in your direction.

And it looks like the guys at DDB UAE are in for just a slightly lukewarm treat as their ad for China Times restaurant has created quite the buzz. The ads feature a Sikh, an African and an Arab with their eyes made to look like that of a Chinese person’s. It comes with the tagline “China Times Authentic Chinese Cuisine: Brings out the Chinese in anyone

The series of three posters was originally posted on Ads of the World, where it garnered some harsh comments. These included:

“If this agency was a football player, they’d find themselves with an eight match ban.”

“Hilariously racist.”

“amateur campaign”

On the other hand, when Gawker published it with the unabashed headline: Someone Thought These Were Good Ads For a Chinese Restaurant under the ‘Badvertising’ category.

Giving it a less than glowing report however, didn’t deter Gawker’s Facebook fans from defending the campaign. Some of them suggesting Gawker “take a chill pill” and others who claimed to be Asian themselves say they find it hilarious and not offensive.

So what do you think, Kipper? Is it advertising gold or garbage?

Check out the ads below and leave a comment if you think these are hilarious or hateful:

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  1. chaz on December 26, 2011 4:13 am

    some people clearly need a huge chill pill. Clever advertising. Well done Chinatimes.

  2. E on January 5, 2012 12:08 pm

    In this case, drawing a connection between narrow eyes and being Chinese strikes me as shallow advertising and speaks to shallow concept development rather than a racist statement.
    I think the campaign is ultimately well intentioned.

  3. samantha on January 10, 2012 7:17 am

    Different strokes for different folks-Well intentioned campain.

  4. Kate on January 12, 2012 12:57 pm

    I think that its celebrating our sameness – in that it doesn’t seem to matter what our nationality, we all enjoy good Chinese food – if only people wouldn’t take things so seriously and look to be pious – I am sure a large number of my Asian friends would ROFLMAO on this one.

  5. L on January 17, 2012 8:34 am

    what’s wrong with people? how is this racist?! it’s just funny and light. clever and good enough for a restaurant ad.
    or do some people just prefer the cliche noodle bowl image?

  6. Esmerald on February 16, 2012 10:57 am

    very funny… definetely, take a chill pill !


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