Sony under fire for "racist" advertising

Sony, seriously, this is getting out of hand. Every time we want to rethink what you're doing and try to back you guys up, you go and pull some stunt like this latest ad campaign in Holland, which, as one can see above, depicts a "white PSP" avatar/model violently holding the mouth of a "black PSP" avatar/model -- in commemoration of the launch of the ceramic white PSP, of course. The billboard pictured here is one of supposedly somewhere near 100 evocative images created for the campaign with the same theme, which found viewers of the ads -- and game lovers alike -- crying foul at Sony's latest foible cum PR fiasco (and believe us, we're sure to catch some fire for calling it just that). When it comes down to it we honestly don't think Sony is stupid enough to mean any ill will -- or smart enough to capitalize on a PR firestorm -- with such an ad campaign. But instead of confronting the issue and addressing peoples' concerns, they meagerly defended themselves to with the following: "The marketing campaign for the launch of the White PSP in the Benelux focuses on the contrast between the Black PSP model and the new Ceramic white PSP model," and "A variety of different treatments have been created as a campaign to either highlight the whiteness of the new model or contrast the black and the white models. Central to this campaign has been the creation of some stunningly photographed imagery..." Oh, make no mistake Sony, the animosity and drama of the imagery, the visceral emotional implication of powerful racial overtones, this is a huge blunder. And once again we find ourselves urging -- nay, demanding -- Tokyo reevaluate what the hell it is they're doing these days. Because mistake or not, this biz doesn't fly, Sony, and you're not helping the perception that you're an incredibly callous megacorp with little real direction.

P.S. -As always, we encourage a discussion. A sensitive, intellectual, worldly discussion. If you can't infer what it is we're asking of our dear readers tempted to intone on this matter, then please skip commenting on this thread, mkay?

[Via Joystiq and GamesIndustry]