Google Blogoscoped

Forum

Mister Wong's New Logo  (View post)

Hans Schneider [PersonRank 1]

Monday, July 30, 2007
10 years ago4,555 views

I bet noone would have cared if a european looking person would have been in the logo. I think this is ridiculous.

Peter [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

it seems pretty harmless. i could understand if the imagery was overtly mean-spritied, but from the looks of it – what are folks objecting to, exactly?

after seeing that image, i think positive things about the website, and probably Asians, in general – maybe that's a bad thing?

guess i'll read the protest site...

maybe if German didn't have such a lurid history – skinheads and racism and eliminationism, etc.

Martin [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

Now the site looks really distinguishable, doesn't it?

And for the "American users were outraged": really? Or was it the usual tiny but vocal political bullshit minority like usually?

Makes me want to create a VT-Wong.com site with a "shotgun-wielding asian-student" logo just to piss them off...

Peter [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

p.s. if you've never heard "Everyone's a little bit racist" from Avenue Q, now is your chance:

chizmax.com/show-artist-Avenue ...

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Edit: I came across the original English quotes now for Tietjen's statements cited in the last paragraph, so my original post's translation from German to English was not necessary anymore. For reference, the old translations are below.

"While many of our users are disappointed by this, we feel this was the right decision." --> "Though this was met with great disappointment from many of our users, we felt it was the right thing to do."

"It was never the intent of me or of the company to hurt the feelings of others with this illustration." --> "It was never my intention, nor that of my company, to hurt anyone with the use of the illustration."

Tietjen's blog entry:
blog.mister-wong.com/a-message ...

Michael Kamleitner [PersonRank 1]

10 years ago #

I'm tend to believe Tietjen, when claiming that the logo-artwork was created without bad intentions, however, the also claimed sensitivity to issues of discrimination obviously wasn't present at the time of branding, otherwise this issues should have been obvious.

btw., the favicon still displays the stereotypical image...

Heebie Sudoku [PersonRank 5]

10 years ago #

This is ridiculous.

xeen [PersonRank 1]

10 years ago #

Stereotypical is racist now? It only becomes racist when it's said that all of that group look or act like that or when such is attached to that image.
Given it was a real photo, would it still be racist then? Simply because the guy looks like that?
One could argue that Einstein looks pretty much like one imagines a cliche professor, so if someone uses a similar painted logo for their website, it would be racists. That's pretty ridiculous.
Being German, I'd say there're two main stereotypes about Germans that can be painted in an image: 1. Nazis 2. Cliche Bavarians. (non-paintable would be "being hyper-correct")
Using Nazis as logo disqualifies for other obvious reasons, but the latter doesn't, although it's clearly a stereotype. I could even imagine it being a mascot... I know it's used in one of the Tony Hawk's games (additionally they're drunk and running around with beer in their hand)... and when first seeing it I had to laugh.
That's probably the difference – being able to laugh over one's own stereotype – of saying it should go or saying "all this is ridiculous".
However, if really some from the portraited group feel offended it's a more serious issue than having someone "unaffected" complain about this. So I believe they made the right decision in removing the logo and probably even should include the complainers when deciding for a new logo that's somehow human-related (e.g. using a gear woudln't offend anyone I guess).
xeen

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

> That's probably the difference – being able to laugh
> over one's own stereotype

Also being German, I think the Lederhosen image is both clicheed and unimaginative. If you've ever lived in a foreign country for a while you will get bored pretty quickly by having to explain to people why you've never been to the Octoberfest, or why you might not particularly like The Scorpions. Not offending, just boring. So I'd probably yawn at a site that would use that image, just like we yawn at any site using stereotypical, clip arts style imagery (like the "smiling support dude with a headset" clip art), or a site using stereotypical sales pitches ("the latest web 2.0 technology" etc. etc.).

But it's a matter of context, of course. If there was a satirical article titled "What Germans are really like" and it would list all those "traits" like Lederhosen, with some detail, it might actually be funny again. I once saw a National Lampoon article which consisted of nothing but national stereotypes of the most ridiculous, over-the-top nature, portraying nation after nation. Or take the Borat stereotype. But that is something different, because the target of the humor is the stereotype itself (and the people who believe in it), and because it's over the top it's actually funny. (Mister Wong doesn't belong to the latter category, IMO.)

Babanokoko [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

This is the type of bullshit people bring up so they don't have to deal with true racism and ethnical discrimination. Having a asian looking guy as a logo is not racism. Geo IP-banning Asia from using the site, that would be racism.

Tadeusz Szewczyk [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

The favicon is still there btw.

For Germans or other white middle class European citizens ist might seem exaggerated. Nonetheless asians in American culture were and still are depicted very unfavorably, remember the classic movie "Breakfast at Tiffanies" that works with ugly asian stereotypes?
Asian Americans are the least popluar on the cultural "cool" scale, even below afro americans, mexicans and other "chicanos".

On the other hand people in Germany do not care much about racism or cultural stereotypes if they do not target black people or jews (in those cases you not allowed to). Other ethnic or cultural minorities are frequently referred to with their respective stereotypes but with lack of respect. Although I live for more than 20 years on Germany I still have to deal with the dumb Polish jokes that were fended off in the US decades ago.

So it is a good lesseon in respect for other ethnic groups that Mister Wong was taught here.

Andre [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

I believe it's someting different portaiing someone with a cliche like "Lederhosen" and portaiing someone with a negative aspect like "car stealing" or something similar.

I really didn't get it, why was the mister wong logo offending somebody? What kind of message did it transport, that was a racial issue?

I live in Colombia, unfortunatly people really have bad stereo types of this country. If a companies logo would show a colombian with cocaine or a weapon, that would be offending. if it would show just a typical face, what would be the problem?

Janko Roettgers [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

Honestly, I was surprised that this didn't happen earlier. I always thought the logo was somewhat unfortunate, and probably born out of German ignorance. It's hard to get sensitive to racism when most people around you are white ...

Martin [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

Pssst, please no one tell Mr. Duy-Dung that the picture he uses for his chinese diner is considered rasist.


mon.de/nr/tao-tao/bild1.jpg



Full page: mon.de/nr/tao-tao/home.htm

Martin [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

Time to get a glass of this ass lazy maxicans rasist Tequila.


whiskeystore.net/images/trends ...



Someone write the company a letter urging them to drop their bottle label, we cannot have that.

Colin Colehour [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

This would be the third logo change this year.

Original Logo at beginning of 2007:


farm2.static.flickr.com/1273/9 ...



Second logo that popped up in February 2007:


farm2.static.flickr.com/1192/9 ...

Martin [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

Look at that stereotypical depiction of a white boy! Rasists! It has to go!


sloganmaker.net/images/schoko3 ...


Tadeusz Szewczyk [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

So there are still people who think that a fat bald guy with a hunch and a double chin is not offending? Why not ugly Mister Schmidt with a Hitler beard instead ? ;-)

Martin [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

Do you believe these logos are offending?


grandmapizza.tripod.com/sitebu ...




grandmajeans.com.au/images/Gra ...


Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

A drawing can express a person/ ethnicity negative or positive Martin. I'm not saying Mister Wong was leaning to either side, I leave it to you to decide, just that we can't say "any cartoon drawing is alike".

Positive (in their intent, first and probably second one is certainly propaganda and as such bad, but that's a different issue)


astrochimp.com/wp-content/uplo ...



chinasnippets.com/images/chine ...



Negative


deutsche-schutzgebiete.de/webp ...



content.answers.com/main/conte ...

Michael A. Banks [PersonRank 1]

10 years ago #

Americans need to learn that we aren't the arbiters of cool and political correctness. "... the right thing to do." By whose rules?

Michael A. Banks [PersonRank 1]

10 years ago #

Hm ... and do the Americans who protest that Mr. Wong is "offensive" also find a guy who really looks like that "offensive?" My friend Wong I Hue looks exactly like this Mr. Wong.

How about a Mr. Wong who looks like Eddie Murphy. Is that racist and sterotyping? Actually, I think they should use a photo of me face in the logo.
--Mike

[Signature removed – Tony]

Joel [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

So... American users have forced a German users to change their logo because they find not PC enough. Typical... Perhaps the site should re-brand as "Ask Budd" and feature a red-neck who jumps to conclusions...!

Martin [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

Of cause a drawing can express a ethnicity negative. But really, the Mr. Wong character is offensive to asians, because he does not have a six-pack and full hair? Is the grandma from the jeans label offensive because she shows a double chin?
To me, this borders on seeing a penis in every cylindric shape with a round tip.

I see Mr. Wrong as a smiling, friendly, buddhaesk figure.

James Xuan [PersonRank 10]

10 years ago #

Though I think Mr. Wong is modelled after a Chinese person, and I am Japanese it probably doen't matter what I say but personally I am not offended by mister wong. Everyone has there stereotypes, like the episode of family guy where they land in ireland and the plane has to pust through miles of empty beer bottles, it's just a bit of fun, i know.

Brian [PersonRank 0]

10 years ago #

being an asian-american who follows Asian activist blogs, maybe i can offer some insight into why people are offended by this image. in the grand scheme of things, maybe a logo like this won't directly cause a hate-crime, but it certainly doesn't help the cause. i see it as another depiction that contributes to the imbalance of 'stereotypical' vs. 'normal' images. in America, every other minority, except possibly Native Americans, have many non-stereotypical images in the media & pop culture to balance out the negative ones that people see. The reason why people dont' get offended by Redneck imagery is because people in America know plenty of white people who don't fit that stereotype. in many parts of our country, however, the only exposure to Asian people that they get are the caricatures, the model minorities, the kung fu masters, or the asexual nerds that they see in the media. How many times do you turn on the TV and see Asian-Americans being in-depth characters and doing normal things?

To use another tired analogy, why do people in America think its ok to stereotype Asian people but are afraid of stereotyping black people or latinos? why is it that when we object to stereotypical imagery, people say we're too sensitive? when people protest BET for "Hot Ghetto Mess", do people complain that those people being too sensitive?

Armand Asante [PersonRank 1]

10 years ago #

awwww
he was so cute.
I'm really sorry he's gone.

I'm also really sorry Americans are having this horrible effect all over the world. No matter what they touch they have to bring their misguided morals and what passes for political correctness in that part of the world nowadays everywhere else.

Other people have a sense of morality too. The American morality/democracy/way of life/whatever is not the only valid one.
I've been around the world (USA too) and I must say that growing up without the oh-so-commonly-used words fuck, shit, pussy etc. on TV has really screwed some people's sense of what is ans what is not acceptable.

grow up!

Jeff Atwood [PersonRank 1]

10 years ago #

Yes, but the real Mr. Wong has been around since 1999 in the form of this Flash series:

icebox.com/index.php?id=episod ...

I'm really surprised the mister-wong.de folks don't know about this..

This thread is locked as it's old... but you can create a new thread in the forum. 

Forum home

Advertisement

 
Blog  |  Forum     more >> Archive | Feed | Google's blogs | About
Advertisement

 

This site unofficially covers Google™ and more with some rights reserved. Join our forum!