India Demands Haagen-Dazs Apology – Racist Price

9 January, 2010 at 22:26 Leave a comment

Quite a furore has been raised over the “Haagen-Dazs Opens No-Indians-Allowed Store” – much of it in sensationalist media and from a sort of entry-level life forms that intellectually have yet to emerge from the primordial ooze viz. blogosphere and tweeples. You know when something has been over-hyped when even Shobha De comes to the party and screams, “India Screams for Ice Cream!”. To be fair she does make a few interesting points. It was bound to happen, you know, monkeys-typewriters-shakespeare (37 plays, roughly two in English) which inspired this…

I really do not want to do this but I have to credit my source. Damn ye ethics –

Are we really that sensitive as to go ballistic over a cup of a hazel nut and raspberry duo that costs the earth? Come on, guys! That corny line about entry restricted to ‘international passport holders only’ was exactly that – corny! All passports by definition are international, remember? What’s a “local” passport?? It was obviously the brainchild of an immature copywriter taking a shot at being extra clever. Clearly, the ad agency got it all wrong, and now the excreta has hit the ceiling. Various groups have banded together to scream, “Racism” and demand an apology if not an immediate closure of the Delhi outlet. At the time of writing, public outrage was beginning to snowball into something major. This may change if something juicier diverts media attention, and bloggers discover a new bête noire. But for now, tweets by the nano second are flying around the world mobilising opinion against the brand’s provocative advertising

They say nothing works as brilliantly as publicity that hammers home a message – regardless of what that message is. Repeated often enough, it sinks into our khopdis and there it stays. After a point, not many people remember why they remember it – but the fact remains, they do! Target achieved. So it might be with the Indian consumer and Haagen-Dazs – the ice cream with attitude. We have taken offence (count me in!) at what is seen as a racial slur, a national insult, a crime. Our izzat is at stake and we shall go to any length to protect it. By over-reacting, we have done the brand a huge favour. Jaaney do. The latest controversy has led to a free national awareness campaign that would otherwise have cost the brand a huge amount of money. The ice cream is front-page news and a matter of heated debate across channels at prime time. Indians are bored at the moment. There is very little action to distract our attention.

A stupid ice-cream brand chose to launch during winter and is generating heat.

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Entry filed under: Business, CWorks, India, News-Media, WebXP.

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