Nike Racism Business Sparks Outrage and Criticism

Internet users are calling for the company to be boycotted because they believe the ad is fraught with prejudice against Japanese society.

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December 3, 2020 3 min read

This article has been translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors can occur due to this process.

Sports company Nike has published a video on their social networks against bullying due to racism. The commercial has received millions of reproductions, but has also received a wave of negative comments as many believe it is full of prejudice against Japanese society.

The new Nike Japan ad is titled “Keep Moving: Yourself, the Future”. It launched on November 30th and has had nearly 10,000 views on YouTube to date. Opinions, although it topped 64,000 likes, it also garnered more than 44 “I don’t like it”.

The clip shows a diverse group of athletes: gender non-binary, Korean ancestry, and biracial ancestry, meaning a daughter of a black father and a Japanese mother. Throughout the video, young women are harassed because of their race and other “differences”. In the end, they find their strength and security thanks to their talent for playing football.

Maybe Nike wanted to ask for inclusion, but internet users didn’t take that well. The comments are full of criticism and even call for the brand to be boycotted, as many have promised to stop buying Nike products.

“Goodbye Nike. Our family will no longer buy your products,” wrote a Twitter user in Japanese.

“Races shouldn’t have anything to do with this. It should be enough to show the individual’s struggle to become strong and independent through sports and other activities, then they would have been a positive universal message. This ad is racist in and of itself, ”wrote a YouTube user.

“Calling people who you’ve never met racially and who you haven’t investigated is a bit racist in itself. Especially when it comes to nationality, ”said another person.

“Today you often see one or two people of different nationalities who go to school in complete peace. The one with the prejudices is Nike “, commented user” hira1216 “.

What does Nike Japan say?

The company didn’t immediately comment on the reaction, but its website states that it believes in the transformative nature of the sport.

“For a long time we listened to minority votes that were supported and voiced for issues that correspond to our values,” says Nike. “We believe that sport has the power to show what a better world looks like, bring people together and drive action in their respective communities.”

In the 2-minute video, tennis player Naomi Osaka appears with a Japanese mother and a Haitian father who sponsors the brand.

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