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Corporations Still Making Basic Diversity Gaffes

December 3, 2009: 03:25 PM EST
2009 provided a clutch of basic mistakes by marketing managers who misrepresented, annoyed or flat out enraged one concerned demographic or another. For instance, in its UK campaign for its film Couples Retreat, Universal Studios airbrushed from the original US poster the only African-American couple, leaving just six white actors on the poster. The company soon reinstated the original. Over the summer Microsoft an image shown on its US site with three office workers – one white, one Asian-American and one African-American – reappeared on its Polish site but with the African-American man's head replaced with that of a white man. Stranger still, the hand belonging to the African-American man was unchanged. Microsoft apologized and removed the photo. Over the fall, Abercrombie & Fitch had to pay damages for banishing to the stockroom a part-time employee because she had a prosthetic arm.
Ruth Mortimer, "Misrepresentation of nation's ethnic diversity drives us all mad ", Marketing Week, December 03, 2009, © Centaur Communications Limited
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