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MANILA, Philippines - Filipinos on social media are reacting to a recently-launched campaign by local clothing brand Bayo.
The campaign, which caries the tagline, "What's your mix?" features Filipino models of mixed descent accompanied by text that "breaks down" their genealogy.
The campaign in itself has been mildly controversial on social media, but one particular ad is being branded by netizens as "racist" and offensive.
The ad features Fil-Aussie Jasmine Curtis-Smith, and is accompanied by copy explaining the "What's your mix?" concept.
"This is just all about MIXING and MATCHING. Nationalities, moods, personalities and of course your fashion pieces," the copy reads.
"Call it biased, but the mixing and matching of different nationalists with Filipino blood is almost a sure formula for someone beautiful and world class."
The ad was never released on any of the brand's social media accounts, a Bayo representative told Rappler; it was uploaded on their official website to explain the rationale behind the campaign.
One user, however, supposedly took a screen shot of the ad — that's when it went viral. [See original thread here]
Users on the thread cried foul over the ad's implication that Filipinos of mixed descent are superior to others, while others said that reactions to the ad were exaggerated, adding that they didn't see anything offensive in it.
"The words are badly put but the intention there was never to offend. Who would want to offend anybody?" said a Bayo representative who requested not to be named.
"At the end of the day, we're all just trying to say that Bayo is all about mixing and matching things. That's how we relate it to mixed races. It's sad that something positive...na-twist nang konti," she told Rappler. The representative, however, admitted that the ad "was really open to misunderstanding."
The campaign has also been written about on tech website Mashable. The article notes, "the brand had previously marketed itself as “proudly Filipino” in the past, so the turnaround came as a surprise to some users, who expressed their dismay over the campaign."
Bayo said the ads are part of the "first wave" in the entire campaign. The next series of ads will talk about a person's provincial "origins" and one's personality.
Do you find the ad (and the campaign) offensive? Tell us what you think.
Meanwhile, here's how the twitterverse is reacting to the ad. - Rappler.com
Click on the links below for more.
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