What Nationality is Cinco de Mayo?

I found out from my Chinese-American friend (my designation-not sure how he self-identifies) on his Facebook update today that he felt misled by what he thought was a traditional Mexican holiday.  However, he discovered and shared that: Cinco de Mayo is only a big deal in America. It’s not even a holiday in Mexico…It’s actually a Hallmark Holiday!!!…

Australia Meets Tokyo in English Language Ad for Lipton Ice Tea in France

  It’s Hugh Jackman, who’s Australian.   It takes place at a hotel in Tokyo.   The voice over at the end is in English.  But apparently it’s made for…France?  That’s the only part I don’t get about this delightful Lipton Ice Tea spot, “Tokyo Dancing Hotel” by DDB Paris. In the world of multicultural marketing and global…

Dillon’s Pick: Confederate Insurance Company? Ouch!

Dillon’s pick this week is the ad above for “Confederate Family Insurance. It was so offensive, that we realized it couldn’t possibly be true.  Indeed, it is from Spike Lee’s faux documentary “Confederate States of America,” that looks at the US as thought the South had won the Civil War. It’s extreme representations, however, provide perfect…

Leo, Conan, and Representations of Americans in Ads Outside of US

There’s so much fodder just looking at stereotypes and unconscious bias in US advertising, that there’s not much time to take a look at ads in other countries, but this ad (thanks to Larry Kolb in Rgober Ebert’s Journal) is a fun peek into advertising appearances by Hollywood stars in Japan. Having been asked at a park in…

Multilingual Robots, White Canada, Latent Sexism: Odds and Ends

Multilingal (20 languages!) Robot a la C3PO RATS!  Looks like the government is moving yet closer to solving issues for multilingual, real-time translation, with the launch of Robust Automatic Translation of Speech  (this link is to the RFP to build the program–reminds me a little of hearing about a contest for 5th graders to come up…

Super Bowl Census Ad Reinforces Sterotypical Bias in Workplace

This Super Bowl Commercial for Snapshot of America could be a snapshot of unconscious bias in the American workforce.  The bosses are white, male and older and all people of color (or those with alternative style) are in supporting positions and/or marginalized.  It’s so steretypical that it’s funny, and I”m not sure if that’s “odd” funny…

Dillon’s Multicultural Ad Pick: Why it helps to know the local customs

Thanks to Intercultural Talk contributer Dillon, age 8, who is learning to recognize great multicultural advertising.  “I chose it because it showed that in English culture it’s polite to finish everything, but in Chinese culture they think you want more if you finish everything,” said Dillon. Look at the fun (depending on your perspective) that ensues when…

Serena Williams and Mother Nature: Generational Contrast Makes for Good Ad

When I first caught a glimpse of an ad on TV of Mother Nature trying to wake up someone who was sleeping, I thought it type-cast women with an out of date image:  Women can’t do anything when their “little gift” comes each month. Seeing the vibrant Serena Williams, who is African-American, perfect as a dynamic,…

Multicultural Roller Skating Babies and Other 2009 Freakiest Ads from Adfreak

Chris Guillebeau on his “Art of Non-Conformity” blog suggests promoting someone else when you’re facing inertia about your own work. That’s easy to do in referring to Adweek’s blog, Adfreak, always a fantastic source for insights and samples of ads around the world, and a great playground for multiculturalists fascinated by the construction and representation of culture…