Credit: 360 Fly / YouTube
Are they for real?
This commercial for 360-degree camera maker 360Fly has stirred a lot of controversy online and it’s easy to see why. In the ad, we see a not-very-good Trump impersonator (though he does have the orange hue down pat) holding a celebratory press conference in front of his newly built wall. There’s only one problem though: In the ad, Trump’s fence doesn’t actually work and undocumented immigrants Bugs Bunny their way into the land of opportunity. And we all know that the best way to get into the U.S. is by burrowing while dressed in your work clothes. A mariachi? A maid? Yawn. This commercial makes me want to go out and try to fly with a pair of leaf blowers more than it makes me want to purchase a 360Fly. Note: Please don’t try to fly with a leaf blower.
Credit: 360 Fly / YouTube
Unsurprisingly, pretty much every TV network has refused to air the ad because it portrays awful stereotypes about Mexican immigrants. I totally get that, but if the networks were really concerned about associating with a product that negatively portrays immigrants, then shouldn’t they also ban any footage of Donald Trump? He did, after all, say, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re sending people that have lots of problems… they’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.” I don’t want to harp on that old racist blooper, but c’mon. I get that two wrongs don’t make a right, but this commercial is hardly worse than anything Trump tweets on a daily basis.
“We received 90 percent approval rate from Latinos…”
— Jenn Duong (@jenndefer) June 27, 2016
Amazingly, when 360Fly was called out for their unfunny racism, they chose to make themselves the victim instead. Jenn Duong, director of virtual reality for a company called 1215Creative, wrote a very thoughtful and highly critical Medium post on the tastelessness of the ad. Various 360Fly execs privately emailed Duong, expressing their discomfort for being rightfully called out. Duong, of course, tweeted screenshots of the ridiculous emails (posted above).
What’s even more baffling is that a company looking to sell a new and innovative tech gadget is doing it by pissing off the people who are most likely to purchase it. 360Fly could have really made a push to sell their admittedly cool camera to Latinos, who are a marketer’s wet dream. But instead, 360Fly chose to be racist. Let’s see how that works out for them.
We’ve reached out to 180LA, the agency behind the ad, for comment but have yet to hear back.