Dove apologizes for controversial ad campaign amid social media backlash
Published Sunday, October 8, 2017 2:46PM EDT
The final image in the three-photo ad series depicts the white woman peeling off her t-shirt to reveal a different woman underneath.
Dove apologized on Twitter Saturday, saying the brand “missed the mark in representing women of colour thoughtfully.”
An image we recently posted on Facebook missed the mark in representing women of color thoughtfully. We deeply regret the offense it caused.— Dove (@Dove) 7 October 2017
Although the images have since been taken down from Dove’s Facebook page, screenshots continue to be shared in the ongoing social media debate about the intention behind the ad.
I'm never buying Dove again.— Tshwanelo Fokazi (@TshwaneloFokazi) 8 October 2017
Y'all think my brown skin symbolises dirt.
Meanwhile, others brought up Dove’s history of controversial ad campaigns and marketing.
Okay, Dove...— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) 8 October 2017
One racist ad makes you suspect.
Two racist ads makes you kinda guilty. pic.twitter.com/hAwNCN84h2
Some commentators pointed out that Dove’s ad is not unlike historical soap ads that had a distinctly racist implication:
Here is another! Y’all literally could’ve googled “racist soap ads” and it would show you ones just like yours. This is not ok pic.twitter.com/iJoEBR4TU4— George M Johnson (@IamGMJohnson) 8 October 2017
Still, there were some who defended Dove.
I saw that Dove ad/clip and... I cannot deal with Outrage Twitter today. Bad marketing? Yes. Racist? No. But yall got it.— Kim Thomas (@KPFUSION) 8 October 2017
Are they not just saying Dove is suitable to all skin types?? This is not racist!!! Ppl will always be offended. Doesn't make them right.— Sian Horne (@Sianhorne) 8 October 2017
I would say tasteless and not well executed but not racist not at all. If u want to see rasicm u will see it everywhere— Forget me Not (@NeverB4g0tt3n) 8 October 2017
Ok the Dove advert maybe wasn't executed well but it's obvious they were not intentionally being racist— Kinda Stable (@BlickestBerry) 8 October 2017