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Saturday, 20 June 2020

Colgate is slammed for holding 'tone-deaf' 'White Night In' event for social media influencers in the face of Black Lives Matter protests

  • Colgate invited social media influencers to get involved in 'White Night In' event
  • Campaign slammed as insensitive and tone deaf during BLM movement
  • New Zealand influencers involved in event have since apologised for taking part
Colgate has been slammed for an insensitive social media campaign called 'White Night In' amidst the Black Lives Matter movement. 
The toothpaste company hosted the 'White Night In' campaign on Thursday night where New Zealand social media influencers dressed in white to promote Colgate's toothpaste.
The campaign included influencers Matilda Green, Hannah Barrett and Simone Anderson. 
A photo of the influencers in a Zoom chat also showed that the campaign was not racially diverse.  
Matilda Green has apologised for taking part in the 'tone deaf' campaign for Colgate
Matilda Green has apologised for taking part in the 'tone deaf' campaign for Colgate
Simone Anderson has since deleted her photo for the White Night In Event
Simone Anderson has since deleted her photo for the White Night In Event 
As the event circulated online, social media users called out Colgate for their 'tone deaf' campaign in the midst of events being undertaken across the globe relating to the Black Lives Matter protests.
'F*****g tone deaf campaign and anyone who doesn't agree a) hasn't read the article or b) doesn't understand the issues of racism being discussed - especially in the current climate,' one person wrote.
'So let me get this right - Colgate NZ - thought it would be cool to have a bunch of influencers have a 'White Night' together in a hotel? WTF! #saynotoracism,' another commented.
'It just felt really tone deaf and insensitive for an Australian PR company to go ahead with that concept. Think an influencer who wasn't part of the event called them out and they kinda just dismissed it and passed it off like it was a great idea,' someone else wrote. 
Ms Anderson shared a photo of herself in the white pyjamas in bed, with food, wine, her computer and pet dog as she showed off Colgate's teeth-whitening product. 
The post has since been deleted. 
Simone Anderson shared a photo of herself in the white pyjamas provided by Colgate for their White Night In event
Simone Anderson shared a photo of herself in the white pyjamas provided by Colgate for their White Night In event
A photo of the influencers in a Zoom chat also showed that the campaign was not racially diverse
A photo of the influencers in a Zoom chat also showed that the campaign was not racially diverse 
Ms Green has also deleted her post and issued an apology describing the event as 'definitely tone deaf and insensitive'. 
'It definitely shouldn't have happened,' she said.    
'I got the full list ahead of the event. I assumed it would be diverse, I didn't even think about it,' she said.
'I have definitely learnt from that.
'I need to take responsibility and use my influence to make sure that these guests lists of PR events are diverse because it's important,' she wrote.
Fellow influencer Ms Carr condemned the event and asked how it was signed off without further questioning if it was appropriate.  
'It tarnishes the work of those who have been in the PR world for a long time and do a bloody good job,' she said.
'Everything that's happened has made me realise that staying quiet about things isn't right.' 
Ms Carr congratulated mummy blogger Maria Foy for also calling out the event to her large following.
Social media users called out the campaign for being 'tone deaf' amid the Black Lives Matter movement
Social media users called out the campaign for being 'tone deaf' amid the Black Lives Matter movement
She added that Ms Foy is a 'white woman with something to lose' stating that it would make a difference with her speaking up. 
'It's time for a change. The world is screaming for a change.'  
Ms Foy believes with better understanding of the world's current situations and a rename of the event, it could have done better. 
She suggested calling it 'Bright Night' and that 'White Night just doesn't make sense given everything going on at the moment.
'Just because you don't think it's an issue, doesn't mean it's not an issue.'   
Daily Mail Australia has contacted Colgate for comment.  

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