Disrespectful IKEA ad touches nerve with Thai transsexuals

IKEADisrespectful IKEA ad touches nerve with Thai transsexuals
BANGKOK | Thu Jan 24, 2013 5:32pm IST

(Reuters) - A Thai man and his girlfriend are shopping at a furniture store. She sees pillows on sale and gets excited, her feminine voice falls suddenly to a deep male-like tone.

Shocked and horrified, her boyfriend runs off.

The advertisement by IKEA, the world's biggest furniture retailer, has incensed a Thai transgender group which called it "negative and stereotypical" and "a gross violation of human rights" in an open letter to the Swedish retail giant.

The 20-second commercial shown on YouTube (link.reuters.com/gyz45t) and on Bangkok's trains in December and January entitled "Luem Aeb" ("Forget to Keep Hidden"), was disrespectful to transsexuals, according to the Thai Transgender Alliance, which demanded an explanation from IKEA.

Transgenders, or "Ladyboys" as they are often referred to, are widely accepted in Thailand and are commonplace in the fashion, beauty and entertainment industries, but are not officially recognised as women.

A marketing official at IKEA Thailand, which opened its first store in the country in November 2011, said on Thursday it had talked with the group in response to its January 9 complaint.

"IKEA has spoken to the group over the telephone and the conversation went very smoothly. We are now drafting a letter in response," the official said, declining to be identified.

(Reporting by Amy Sawitta Lefevre; Editing by Martin Petty and Ron Popeski)

Reference: http://in.reuters.com/article/2013/01/24/thailand-ikea-transgenders-idINDEE90N0AM20130124
Picture: The Ikea sign is seen outside the Wembley branch of the Swedish international furniture and home accessories company in west London October 15, 2010. Credit: Reuters/Toby Melville/Files





Copyright © 2015 The Foundation of Transgender Alliance for Human Rights
มูลนิธิเครือข่ายเพื่อนกะเทยเพื่อสิทธิมนุษยชน (The Foundation of Thai Transgender Alliance for Human Rights)
C/O ศูนย์ศึกษานโยบายสาธารณสุขสวัสดิการและสังคม เลขที่ 25/25 ชั้น 3 อาคารคณะสังคมศาสตร์และมนุษยศาสตร์ มหาวิทยาลัยมหิดล ต.ศาลายา อ.พุทธมณฑล จ.นครปฐม 73170 โทรสาร 0-2441-9184, 0-2441-9515 ต่อ 112 (แฟกซ์อัตโนมัติ) Email: thaitga@ gmail.com