Welcome!

News Feed Item

Italian American One Voice Coalition Denounces Offensive AFLAC Commercial

Organization moves to cease broadcast of ad depicting Italian Americans in unfavorable light through use of negative stereotypes

BLOOMFIELD, N.J., Jan. 14, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The Italian American One Voice Coalition (IAOVC), an anti-defamation group that includes multiple Italian American organizations, expressed dismay and disgust with the airing of the recent AFLAC commercial, depicting the kidnapping of the iconic AFLAC Duck by characters that are clearly meant to portray Italian Americans in a bad light.

"The Ad uses negative stereotypes of characters obviously meant to portray Italian Americans which are unacceptable and should be immediately removed," said Manny Alfano, IAOVC President in a letter to AFLAC representatives. "The commercial's intent is to ridicule Italian Americans – and an apology is in order." Alfano further requested a meeting with AFLAC executives and the immediate cessation of broadcasting the commercial, which was aired during The Sun Bowl and ABC's New Year's Rockin' Eve. The commercial is also slated to air during the Super Bowl, which is among the most viewed programs in America, increasing the concern of IAOVC. 

The ad tastelessly has the AFLAC Duck kidnapped by alleged mobsters, portrayed by an actor known for playing Italian American gangster images. They pat the Duck down, threaten him and then dump him from a moving limo.

IAOVC expressed surprise and dismay at the content of the ad since AFLAC has generally been known for humorous, family oriented themes in their advertising and a sensitivity to social and ethnic concerns, as evidenced by the swift removal of the inventor of the AFLAC Duck voice, Gilbert Gottfried, when he joked about Japanese people in the aftermath of a tsunami. Gottfried was fired less than 48 hours after the jokes appeared. Michael Zuna, the well-known and respected Chief of Marketing for AFLAC, headed the action in replacing Gottfried, yet enthusiastically embraced and introduced the new ad. The contradiction and hypocrisy of his actions only serve to highlight that Italian Americans continue to be a group that is consistently maligned and that the "open season" on the Italian American character and heritage continues and is considered acceptable at the highest levels of corporate America.

It is the position of IAOVC that this continued maligning creates a never ending, negative image of Italian Americans, despite their enormous contributions to this nation. The cavalier attitude of Michael Zuna, CMO and Dan Amos, Chairman and CEO of AFLAC, in promoting this ad sends a message that ethnic and bias attacks are acceptable and continue to be the norm. Additionally, Alfano points out that this is an old tired image, increasingly perpetuated over the last 40 years in the American media. "It is neither innovative nor humorous, but it is undoubtedly and clearly offensive," Alfano stated.

The Italian American One Voice Coalition is a group dedicated solely to fighting defamation, negative stereotyping and discrimination against Italian Americans. It is a national group, based in New Jersey.

For further information, contact:

Sebastian D"Elia

Email

Director of Communications,

Italian American One Voice Coalition

www.iaovc.org

908-770-3662

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Italian-American-One-Voice-Coalition/135948066450379?ref=br_tf

Twitter: https://twitter.com/IAOneVoice

Read more news from Italian American One Voice Coalition.

 

SOURCE Italian American One Voice Coalition

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloud Academy will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloud Academy is the industry’s most innovative, vendor-neutral cloud technology training platform. Cloud Academy provides continuous learning solutions for individuals and enterprise teams for Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and the most popular cloud computing technologies. Ge...
In his keynote at 19th Cloud Expo, Sheng Liang, co-founder and CEO of Rancher Labs, discussed the technological advances and new business opportunities created by the rapid adoption of containers. With the success of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and various open source technologies used to build private clouds, cloud computing has become an essential component of IT strategy. However, users continue to face challenges in implementing clouds, as older technologies evolve and newer ones like Docker c...
Building a cross-cloud operational model can be a daunting task. Per-cloud silos are not the answer, but neither is a fully generic abstraction plane that strips out capabilities unique to a particular provider. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Wolf, VP & Chief Technology Officer, Global Field & Industry at VMware, will discuss how successful organizations approach cloud operations and management, with insights into where operations should be centralized and when it’s best to decentraliz...
Containers have changed the mind of IT in DevOps. They enable developers to work with dev, test, stage and production environments identically. Containers provide the right abstraction for microservices and many cloud platforms have integrated them into deployment pipelines. DevOps and containers together help companies achieve their business goals faster and more effectively. In his session at DevOps Summit, Ruslan Synytsky, CEO and Co-founder of Jelastic, reviewed the current landscape of Dev...
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Outlyer, a monitoring service for DevOps and operations teams, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Outlyer is a monitoring service for DevOps and Operations teams running Cloud, SaaS, Microservices and IoT deployments. Designed for today's dynamic environments that need beyond cloud-scale monitoring, we make monitoring effortless so you ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that TMC has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo and Big Data at Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6–8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, , and the 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Global buyers rely on TMC’s content-driven marketplaces to make purchase decisions and navigate markets. Learn how we can he...
Artificial Intelligence has become a topic of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo at the Javits Center in New York, June 6-8, will find fresh new content in a new track called Cognitive Computing | Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Deep Learning. Cloud Expo is still accepting submissions for this new track, so please visit www.cloudcomputingexpo.com for the latest information. 2...
Containers have changed the mind of IT in DevOps. They enable developers to work with dev, test, stage and production environments identically. Containers provide the right abstraction for microservices and many cloud platforms have integrated them into deployment pipelines. DevOps and Containers together help companies to achieve their business goals faster and more effectively. In his session at DevOps Summit, Ruslan Synytsky, CEO and Co-founder of Jelastic, reviewed the current landscape of D...
More and more brands have jumped on the IoT bandwagon. We have an excess of wearables – activity trackers, smartwatches, smart glasses and sneakers, and more that track seemingly endless datapoints. However, most consumers have no idea what “IoT” means. Creating more wearables that track data shouldn't be the aim of brands; delivering meaningful, tangible relevance to their users should be. We're in a period in which the IoT pendulum is still swinging. Initially, it swung toward "smart for smart...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Addteq will exhibit at SYS-CON's DevOps Summit at Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Addteq specializes in creating innovative solutions to solve business processes through the use of DevOps automation. Addteq was founded on the firm belief that automation is essential for successful software releases. Addteq's products and services are centered around the fundamental approach of understanding the p...
Bert Loomis was a visionary. This general session will highlight how Bert Loomis and people like him inspire us to build great things with small inventions. In their general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Architect at IBM Bluemix, and Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at Nvidia, discussed the accelerating pace of AI development and how IBM Cloud and NVIDIA are partnering to bring AI capabilities to "every day," on-demand. They also reviewed two "free infrastructure" pr...
In recent years, containers have taken the world by storm. Companies of all sizes and industries have realized the massive benefits of containers, such as unprecedented mobility, higher hardware utilization, and increased flexibility and agility; however, many containers today are non-persistent. Containers without persistence miss out on many benefits, and in many cases simply pass the responsibility of persistence onto other infrastructure, adding additional complexity.
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
ChatOps is an emerging topic that has led to the wide availability of integrations between group chat and various other tools/platforms. Currently, HipChat is an extremely powerful collaboration platform due to the various ChatOps integrations that are available. However, DevOps automation can involve orchestration and complex workflows. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Himanshu Chhetri, CTO at Addteq, will cover practical examples and use cases such as self-provisioning inf...