American designer Tory Burch has come under fire after releasing an ad that some say appropriates black culture.
Featuring the Zay Hilfigerrr and Zayion Mccall song "Juju On That Beat" and no models of colour, Poppy Delevingne and other talent start off the ad by first driving alongside a monkey, then are featured doing the dance associated with the hip-hop tune — and people are not pleased.
The apprehension stems from the use of the song without credit for its creators, as well as the lack of people of colour in the ad.
But director Giovanna Engelbert, who originally posted the video on Instagram and later deleted it, swears the brand meant no harm by the video, and said they chose the song because it was "fun."
"'Juju on That Beat' is a happy song," she told Elle Malaysia on Thursday. "I like the fact that it is a very easy song, too."
"The girls learned the moves very quickly and they had fun. The best part was watching them rehearsing and doing the song because they enjoyed themselves for real, which made this whole process very fun."
Nonetheless, the ad has been reposted by other Instagram accounts and users haven't held back when it came to voicing their concerns.
"I have been trying to avoid this all day," one person commented in the post above. "I'm glad the group [Zayion McCall and Zay Hilfigerrr, the artists behind the song] is getting their publishing but I'm also tired of our music and work being used to sell products made by people that don't look out for us."
"This is the most sickening and blatant appropriation video I've ever seen. Like what the actual fuck. Clearly no people of color worked on this ideation. If anyone has seen dream girls all I can say is Cadillac car," said another user.
Burch herself did issue an apology for the ad, stating, "I personally feel badly if this hurt anyone, and I'm truly sorry." But it was later deleted.
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