Freedom Folks

Thursday, January 25, 2007


Source: classical values
SHANGHAI — Next month, China will ring in the Year of the Pig. Nestlé SA planned to celebrate with TV ads featuring a smiling cartoon pig. "Happy new pig year," the ads said.

This week, China Central Television, the national state-run TV network, banned Nestlé's ad — and all images and spoken references to the animal in commercials, including those tied to the Lunar New Year, China's biggest holiday.

The intent: to avoid offending Muslims, who consider pigs unclean. "China is a multiethnic country," the network's ad department said in a notice sent to ad agencies late Tuesday. "To show respect to Islam, and upon guidance from higher levels of the government, CCTV will keep any 'pig' images off the TV screen."

Suddenly, companies reaching out to China's booming consumer market have a pig problem. The edict has sent Nestlé and others scrambling to adapt to the last-minute rule change, altering spots that had included pigs.

Nestlé is now figuring out what to do with its ads, says its media-buying company MindShare, a unit of WPP Group. "We act in line with any requests that we receive from the authorities" about the content of ads, says Francois-Xavier Perroud, a spokesman for Nestlé.
China, Dhimmi's? Will wonders never cease!


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