Heineken Pulls New Ad After Chance the Rapper Calls It ‘Terribly Racist’
Heineken has pulled its latest ad after the commercial was labeled racist by Grammy Award-winning artist Chance the Rapper among several others. In the 30-second clip, a bartender slides a beer past three black people to a fair-skinned woman. When the drink reaches her, text pops up on the screen reading, “Sometimes, lighter is better.” [related]
Heineken says the slogan strictly references the product, Heineken Light, but others are outraged by the ad’s allegedly racist undertones.
“I think some companies are purposely putting out noticably [sic] racist ads so they can get more views. And that shit racist/bogus so I guess I shouldn’t help by posting about it. But (laughing emoji) I gotta just say tho. The ‘sometimes lighter is better’ Hienekin [sic] commercial is terribly racist omg,” Chance the Rapper wrote on Twitter.
The Chicago-born artist says he isn’t calling for a boycott on products advertised in insensitive ways. He just wants his fans to know that any potential oversights could actually be marketing strategies.
“I’m not saying boucott [sic] them or go off I’m just noticing how often it happens and I think they baiting consumers and tweeters and freelancers and shit. Like I didn’t wanna tweet about it so bad (laughing emojis) but its like how can u not,” he wrote.
After Complex wrote an article about the tweets, Chance the Rapper followed up with another message.
“You missed the entire point, I was pointing out that a lot of these marketing agencies are doing willfully so we overreact and tweet about it, and you write an article and tweet, and we all say their brand name 50 times. That’s the first sentence of my shit. And u didn’t mention it,” he said.
Complex has not responded to the tweet.
Other people on Twitter are just as appalled.
“Imagine creating a racist commercial and being proud of it? LMFAO never giving @Heineken my business again,” @Alexa_Stewarttt wrote.
“This Heineken light beer commercial is definitely racist. What idiots do they have approving this ad? Fire that person. And the ad agency who developed it should be fired. Period. No excuse for this. I watched the ad. It’s racist,” @helenehrenhofer said.
In a statement to The Daily Meal, a spokesperson for Heineken said: “For decades, Heineken has developed a positive track record for creating marketing that shows there’s more that unites us than divides us. While we feel the ad is referencing our Heineken Light beer, and that light beer is better than other high-calorie options — we missed the mark, are taking the feedback to heart and will use this to influence future campaigns.”
For more PR disasters, check out 10 times Applebee’s, Friday’s, and 7 other chains really messed up.