romanii sunt tigani prosti si paduchiosi  

Thrown (Ţâpat) in ,

Fiindca, pare-se, e nevoie de o campanie ROM pentru a afla ce spune Google. How "lice-laced" must you be to hear in a TV commercial about Google?!

For those who don’t know, ROM is some sweet thingie made in Romania. It has the dubious advantage of having its first 3 letters equivalent to the ethnonym that is now generally used for Gypsies. The problem is that Romanians, while strongly resenting being badmouthed are also viciously prejudiced toward this ethnic minority which had been enslaved in medieval times (an era that lasted there until XIX or 2007, depending on how you count). Enslaving a race / tribe is something done since the dawn of our species, but other nations have made amends, one way or another.

I might have the chronology wrong but here it is..

This deeply seated aversion that overwhelms logic even in my educated friends is a problem for the manufacturer. First, they played on the “Party tradition” – this is a brand that’s been around since 1964 (though I’ve never heard of it before). Eventually, the racist aversion to Gypsies was confronted head-on: senzatii tari was a big hit especially with those who don’t like Romania much and dream of immigrating. McCann Erickson had found a reflex ripe for exploitation in the knee-jerk reaction to nationalist causes so they proceeded with an elaborate hoax, replacing the Romanian flag with the American one and winning 2 Grand Prix of the 2011 Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity—in the Promo & Activation and Direct contests. That second part involved revealing the hoax and letting “patriotic juices” run free. The anthem was born with a flag which apparently was “reintroduced” on the packaging. Thusly we get to today’s topic, brought to you by the letters R, O and M:

20111118-005-screencap 20111119-005-screencap

So, according to search suggestions, romanii sunt paduchiosi, prosti dar nu tigani. Likewise, Romanians are rude, scum, ugly but not gypsies. But how are Canadians or Americans “treated”?

20111118-006-screencap 20111118-007-screencap

Obviously, Canadians are simultaneously [whaaa?], afraid of the dark, weird and awesome. Americans are fat, dumb, brainwashed, but aren’t stupid.

Some great advertising brain noticed that Google “calls” Romanians “stupid and lice-laden”. So they started the campaign below to Google bomb for better search suggestions. This is incredibly silly: Google can easily identify and nullify such attempts (if they want to – or maybe they’ll let it go). It’s only the brand that achieves higher recognition on the backs of dumb, web illiterate but “patriotic” Romanians.

If one bothers to look, one might find that other ethnicities are similarly treated by Google:

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Prior to this campaign there may have been doubts on Romanians intelligence or lack thereof. This success (or, more to the point, failure) will remove them.

LE: If we want to improve our image as a nation / nationality, we need to first start calling ourselves Dacians. In an ideal world this would not be necessary, but in ours it is – others still like to divide the world by ethnicity and / or race and allowing the current prejudices to exist unchecked negatively affects many people who had nothing to do with creating them in the first place. The image problems of the Roma and Romanians, combined, make tackling them very difficult and the message confusing. Clearly distinguishing between the two could help in tackling the problems (real or imaginary) of both as it allows better identifying them and customizing solutions.

Having different names is not tantamount to apartheid: Dacia would still have a duty to ensure that all its citizens and particularly minorities are fairly treated and have the same chance of success as the majority. But different names is simply a recognition and celebration of different roots and customs. Gypsies can’t and mustn’t be assimilated and they also have the right to choose to be called whichever way they want (even though it seems to me that the name “Roma” was chosen for them and not by them). They are definitely unique and have an original culture unlike any other European people. It is about time we try to understand and celebrate them and stop deporting them to the margins of the Empire.

Sources / More info: romanii-ROM, adwk-mccann

Thank you for reading (mulţam fain pentru cetire)! Publicat Saturday, November 19, 2011 . Similar articles under the following categories (poţi găsi articole similare sub următoarele categorii): (Subscribe), (Subscribe) . Dacă ţi-a plăcut articolul, PinIt-uieste-l, ReddIt-eaza-l, stumble-uieste-l altora, trimite-l pe WhatsApp yMess şi consideră abonarea la fluxul RSS sau prin email. Ma poti de asemenea gasi pe Google. Trackback poateputea fi trimis prin URL-ul de sub Comentarii.
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