An ad for Energy Watch has been banned by the Advertising Standards Bureau for racially stereotyping Indian people as “door knockers”.
The ASB ruled that the depiction of the door to door salesman as an Indian man with a strong accent perpetuates a negative stereotype, and the suggestion that the Indian man may not be honest is also offensive.
A complaint from an Australian of Indian descent read: “I find the ad racist and given that there are hardly any Indians or Asians in ads on Australian TV it merely is pandering to a stereotypical depiction of my heritage.”
Another read: “If it is acceptable for blue-eyed white people to blow a whistle and show Asians a red card then Hitler will indeed be proud.”
The Communications Council’s multicultural committee chair Sheba Nandkeolyar, who recently criticised the ad industry for its hesitation to use “foreign faces” in advertising, told Mumbrella: ” I cannot believe in this day and age agencies are creating such ads.”