Tackling Racism

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PORTLAND, OREGON, Monday: Sportswear giant Nike has taken another stand against racism through a powerful campaign in response to the death of Minneapolis man George Floyd.

Known for not shying away from social issues, Nike released the 60-second spot across its digital platforms on Friday evening following a week of protests and unrest in Minneapolis.

Today (Tuesday) the ad was named the Global Best Ad of the Week by AdForum (scroll down for the link).

With simple white text on a black screen, Nike makes a play on its usual Just Do It tagline and tells consumers: For once, don’t do it. Don’t pretend there’s not a problem in America. Don’t turn your back on racism. Don’t accept innocent lives being taken from us.

The campaign, from Wieden+Kennedy Portland, comes five days after Floyd, a black man, died while a white police officer kneeled on his neck.

“The ad was named the Global Best of the Week by AdForum.”

A Nike spokesperson said: “Nike has a long history of standing against bigotry, hatred and inequality in all forms.

“We hope that by sharing this film we can serve as a catalyst to inspire action against a deep issue in our society and encourage people to help shape a better future.”

This isn’t the first time Nike has taken a stand on social issues. In 2018, Nike used football player Colin Kaepernick for a campaign with the message “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”

The former football player knelt during the US national anthem in protest of racial inequalities. Nike’s ad drew plenty of support and criticism, however, as it was seen as supporting the decision of players to kneel during the anthem in protest.

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