Sunday, March 2, 2014

Blog #3

What if I want to expand Boba (Tapioca Pearl) Tea to the White Consumers?

Vy Nguyen

This is my third week committing to the anti-consumerism challenge. I feel extremely thankful that "eating outside" does not violate my obligation to "no-new-luxury-goods". Otherwise, I failed from the first day of this challenge. I love boba tea! I love it so much that I religiously go to TeaBo every Friday for a peach green tea with boba. Moreover, I even name my little shiba inu, Boba! Boba brings me joy and recalls nostalgic memories of my siblings bonding time after school every Friday back in Vietnam. The green tea requires to be a little herbal to increase one's sensation. A little tough texture of the tapioca soaked in honey mixture is so divine, and carries so much chewing excitement! Indeed, just like other Asian specialties, tapioca pearls are not visually appealing. Along with some negative impacts on health, boba is not very popular among the non-Asian community, specially the white community. In today blog, I have a proposing curiosity: What if I want to expand Boba (Tapioca Pearl) Tea to the White Consumers?

This is just a picture of boba from Jazen Tea in San Jose, CA (left); and a meme that I found making fun of white people stereotypes not liking bubble tea (right).

This week in class discussed about the case of "ABERCROMBIE & GLITCH / Asian Americans Rip Retailer for Stereotypes on T-shirts". On a business standpoint, I understand the rationality in term of business strategy for Abercrombie & Glitch to do what they have done expanding to Asian customers. On the personal ethics viewpoint, these products sent solely the message of embracing white people's history and discrimination to Chinese workers. More importantly, these shirts confusingly assumed all Asians are Chinese when most of the jokes mainly surround the Chinese laundry workers. This case study reminded me of a recent discriminatory YouTube superstar, Alison Gold, singing "Chinese Food".

This is the most discriminatory scene of the music video, which demonstrates that the producer cannot distinguish between Chinese and Japanese culture.

As shown in the picture above, the blond Alison was trying to promote Chinese food yet she was wearing the Japanese kimono while claiming "I love Chinese food" with her geisha friends. After the marketing strategy lesson from Alison Gold and both Abercrombie & Glitch, I learned to NEVER offend my white consumers by assuming all white people come from one "white continent". As much as I want to share my boba love to everyone, I will definitely not make a shirt or a music video dedicating to the white community!

Inside source: "ABERCROMBIE & GLITCH / Asian Americans Rip Retailer for Stereotypes on T-shirts." SFGate. N.p., 18 Apr. 2002. Web. 01 Mar. 2014. .

Outside source: "Why Alison Gold’s ‘Chinese Food’ Caused a Stir." The Wall Street Journal. , 19 Oct. 2013. Web. 02 Mar. 2014.

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