White Is Better

31 May

Sony Advertisement for the PSP White

Sony’s advertisement for the Playstation Portable Ceramic White edition came under fire in 2006. Over 100 images were edited and approved for advertising purposes– however, did Sony take a moment to look at the image and see was it was illustrating?

The first thing anyone will notice about this image is the strong, aggressive, dominating white “avatar” of the white PSP; the white model. Her aggression is obviously directed to the avatar of the black PSP; the black model. She is shown clawing, grabbing and exerting her dominance over the black model. She illustrates her superiority by the way she stands, asserts herself and treats the other avatar. It’s obvious that the white women is set to be the center of attention in the way that the background nearly fades out the black woman in the advertisement.

“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. 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…”

While Sony claims to not recognize the allegations and accusations against them– they poorly chose the word imagery to describe the photo shoot used for the advertisement.

The imagery illustrated here is reflective of white supremacy, slavery and overall mistreatment of African American individuals in the past. The image reinforces the notion that white on black aggression is acceptable in order to display dominance.

After several weeks of harsh criticism, Sony pulled the images, however attempted to illustrate that their advertisement was not offensive to the demographic they were aiming towards (Holland natives):

“We recognize that the subject matter of one specific image may have caused concern in some countries not directly affected by the advertising. As a result, we have now withdrawn the campaign.”

In my eyes, Sony would have been better off pulling the images, sending out an apologetic press release and moving on with the release of their device– however, their patronizing response regarding the release attempts to devalue the accusations against them, thus rejecting the seriousness of the situation and the images that were published.

Images surfaced over the internet that mocked what Sony had done– and illustrated the actual imagery that Sony was portraying.

PSP Mockery Ad


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