The sports firm Nike published on its social networks a video against bullying due to racism. The commercial has obtained millions of reproductions, but also a wave of negative comments, as many consider that it is full of prejudices against Japanese society.
The new Nike Japan ad is titled “Keep Moving: Yourself, the Future” . It was launched on November 30 and has so far reached almost 10,000 views on YouTube. the opinions, although it exceeds 64 thousand likes , it also accumulates more than 44 “I don’t like it”.
The clip features a diverse group of athletes: gender non-binary, of Korean descent, and of biracial origin, meaning a daughter of a black father and a Japanese mother. Throughout the video, young women are harassed because of their race and other “differences.” In the end, they find their strength and security thanks to their talent for playing soccer.
Perhaps Nike’s intention was to call for inclusion, but netizens did not take it well. The comments are full of criticism and even calls to boycott the brand, as many promised not to buy Nike products again.
“Goodbye Nike. Our family will no longer buy your products, ” wrote a Twitter user in Japanese.
“Race should have nothing to do with this issue. It should be enough to show the struggle of individuals to become strong and independent through sports and other activities, then they would have been a positive universal message. This ad is racist in and of itself , ”wrote a YouTube user.
“Calling people you have never met racist and who you have not investigated in depth is a bit of a racist in itself. Especially when it comes to nationality, ”said another person.
“Today you often see one or two people of different nationalities going to school perfectly in peace. The one with prejudices is Nike “ , commented the user” hira1216 “.
What does Nike Japan say?
The company did not immediately comment on the response, but on its website it says that they believe in the transformative nature of sports.
“We have long listened to minority voices, supported and spoken out for causes that are consistent with our values,” says Nike. “We believe that sports have the power to show what a better world is like, bring people together and encourage action in their respective communities.”
In the 2-minute video, tennis player Naomi Osaka appears , with a Japanese mother and Haitian father, whom the brand sponsors.