Sibongile Mafu

Cape Town Fish Market causes a stink

2013-09-05 08:06

Sibongile Mafu

Cape Town Fish Market along with the advertising company Lowe, Cape Town have done a pretty good job of being offensive, apologising offensively for being offensive and taking offence at our offence. A pretty sad cycle of events.

Several months ago, Cape Town Fish Market had people fuming at a television advertisement that that depicted blackface. In the ad, they push the message that their fish is fresh and not frozen and go about driving that message in a peculiar way.

The advert itself begins with a white man saying he wants to teach people about the restaurant's fish, which is fresher than the fish of its competitors. Many of who mislead the public into thinking their fish is fresh. They go through various scenarios of people misleading others with the "kicker" being the corrupt blackface dictator. The black politician (a white man with his face painted black) with a thick African accent is on the phone saying "You just need to put that in the 'expense account'", with the last two words in inverted commas.

Two viewers complained to the Advertising Standards Authority because it implied that black politicians are corrupt, and of all the characters featured in the ad, the only "black" one had his face painted.

ASA ordered the Cape Town Fish Market to remove the advert as it implied that black politicians are liars.

Prior to the ASA ruling the Cape Town Fish Market, following the rumblings of complaints from people and released a video "apologising" (not air quotes) for causing offence. In it they sarcastically and with alleged humour say sorry to but really not apologising at all as their sarcastic overuse of air quotes implies. There's a bit of sexism thrown in there for good measure.



Now, there are countless other adverts out there like this. Some are taken off air, and some continue to be broadcast. No one really learns anything or recognises why it is wrong. Cape Town Fish Market and Lowe and Lowe and Partners, Cape Town will probably continue churning out work like this, patting themselves on the back and wondering how many Loeries it will win.

Anyone who complains or takes offence will be labelled as overreacting or "not able to take a “joke". When did pushing the boundaries and challenging thinking mean racism in advertising? I may just be a regular consumer of it, but it seems to be the formula. And agencies are lauded and applauded for poor ads that push the boundaries in Lowe blows. They'll claim to be pushing out thought-provoking work when you're really just left scratching your head, asking why?

The Managing Director of Lowe and Partners, Cape Town, Aiden Connolly (who describes himself as an Irish Ad Man in Africa and Straight talker) took to Twitter last night to take offence at our offence.

And,

And my favourite, add a silent sob effect,

Of course the problem is not them creating this advert, it is those speaking out about being offended? And his not seeing why people are angry is probably what makes it even more frustrating. An ASA ruling does not fix mindsets unfortunately. And the defensive "poor me" reaction is evidence of close to zero lessons being learnt, and a complete disregard of the very many offensive things about that advert.

He ended off with this gem…

Lots of "mistakes", it seems. Their colleagues in Johannesburg mistakenly made THAT Flora ad.

- Sibongile is a videographer, blogger and social media enthusiast who would be nothing without her thumbs. Follow her on Twitter: @SboshMafu.

Send your comments to Sibongile

Disclaimer:
News24 encourages freedom of speech and the expression of diverse views. The views of columnists published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24
.




- News24

NEXT ON NEWS24X

Hollywood exposed

2014-12-19 15:23

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
51 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

At last you are able to see the light. You are able to break through obstacles in an innovative and original way. Visualisation is...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.