Just yesterday, Ashton Kutcher's Popchips ad released online where he is seen portraying very different characters looking for love on a fictitious dating service.
Although, yes, it was funny, many people have taken offense because of one of the personas he played: a brownfaced, Indian Bollywood producer named Raj. The other personas included a fashionista, a sensitive, tattooed Southerner and a dreadlocked stoner. They all appear in dating-service style videos.
However, Raj says things like: “Kardashian hot. I would give that dog a bone,” or how he is competing in a "milking contest."
Tech pundit Anil Dash said about the ad, writing on his blog: "I think the people behind this Popchips ad are not racist. I think they just made a racist ad, because they're so steeped in our culture's racism that they didn't even realize they were doing it."
A hip-hop group in New York, Das Racist however lashed out their anger on Twitter saying, "Hey @aplusk, what's with the racist brownface video you talentless, pretending to care about sex trafficking piece of s--t?"
Ouch. But that's not all, they continued to tweet about it, this time demanding action be taken, "Hey if you care, call popchips...and register your concern, they got to pull this s--t and apologize, that's it."
That was only a few of the many tweets that were sent out to him, there were also many hate comments on the orginal YouTube video, and a lot of dislikes.
The ad has now been removed from both YouTube and Facebook. The company wrote a statement to to E! news saying:
"The new Popchips worldwide dating video and ad campaign featuring four characters was created to provoke a few laughs and was never intended to stereotype or offend anyone. At Popchips we embrace all types of shapes, flavors and colors, and appreciate all snackers, no matter their race or ethnicity. We hope people can enjoy this in the spirit it was intended."
Wow, looks like Ashton's got some answering to do!
What do you think, was this Ashton's fault or Popchips? Do you think the ad was racist or not?