This advertisement produced a few years ago was banned from South African television. It shows white and black South Africans in reversed roles. Whites as maids, blacks as madams and so on. How odd that the advertisment invoked such controversy so as to get banned. This reaction is particularly problematic in light of the fact that few seem to be objecting to the reality of seeing black people living poorly.
This ad was not banned. For pete's sake people, it is not that hard to check your facts. This ad was received with wide acclaim, won multiple awards, and ran for some time. It was stopped because it had run its course and everyone had seen it, that's all, like all ads.
Branding, Not Banning
My research--I am writing a paper focusing on selected TV commercials produced after Apartheid--and my information is that the commercial was not banned. It was merely a case of SABC1 changing its station brand.
In fact, in May 2004, when the commercial was first broadcast the Johannesburg Financial Mail quoted SABC1’s marketing manager: "As a channel, SABC 1 deals with social realism. The commercial shows the current social reality. All that we have done is reverse the racial stereotypes." The commercial also seemed to have done well with its intended audience. According to the same article in the Financial Mail, the commercial clocked up a 95% noting score after the first burst (of screenings), “… remarkable given that it had to oust the 10-year-entrenched Simunye platform.”
Two years into the campaign, SABC1 announced that it was rebranding again away from Ya Mampela. Its new slogan would be: Mzansi fo Sho loosely translated as ‘South Africa For Sure”). In explaining the shift away from Ya Mampela, channel executives argued that while “some of the values inherent in the Ya Mampela positioning, though relevant at the time, were no longer so in the post 2005 South Africa.” Ya Mampela’s while “seen as positively bold, fiery and straight-talking,” was also negatively seen as “highly gritty and rebellious.” What were needed now, according to SABC managers, were “real ‘tell it like it is content’” and “… routes to personal freedom and individuality” that young people could negotiate themselves. Mzansi fo sho would help young people “engage with their reality … for survival, prosperity and the construction of their identities in an uncertain environment.”
So no banning, but really a case of brands.
I would like to hear from others.