Lawn is (literally) the latest rage

Published: March 15, 2012

The picture of a "poverty stricken coolie carrying a Louis Vuitton bag" had more than 200 comments below it posted by angry fans who were "disgusted" by the advertisement. PHOTO: PUBLICITY

We love being angry don’t we? As a nation, Pakistanis are most certainly good at one thing: criticizing. I’m not saying that is a bad thing. It’s good to have an opinion, but we should know where to draw the line.

Being enraged about the violation of human rights by Maya Khan in her morning show was great. We showed her that civil society is sensible and very active.

However, when my Twitter and Facebook were flooded with angry comments about the latest Sana Safinaz advertising campaign last night, I had to see what the ‘poor’ brand had done to deserve this kind of thrashing.

Through the links provided in people’s tweets, I found myself staring at a beautiful model dressed in vibrantly coloured lawn sporting the most regal expression. Behind her was the source of the controversy – a group of poor ‘coolies’ standing indistinctly behind her, carrying her Louis Vuitton luggage, their faces partly shrouded by the brand name in bold letters.

The picture of a “poverty stricken coolie carrying a Louis Vuitton bag” had more than 200 comments below it posted by angry fans who were “disgusted” by the advertisement.

Zarlasht Faisal wrote:

“A fashion shoot becomes a political/social statement when you construct the visual narrative out of context. The context of the communication was that SS prints make you look good. But when you juxtapose it with a line up of coolies who symbolize daily back breaking labor with low wages it becomes a political statement. And that’s why I feel so many people took offense to it. “

Rabia Salman wrote:

“Why couldn’t you come up with a better campaign than this? It just glorifies the gap between rich and poor. Look at the poor man. His whole life’s savings is worth less than that bag.”

Abira Ashfaq:

“This is offensive to the plight of the poor. The men in the picture make barely minimum wage which is Rs. 7500 a month. How about a suit? How much did it cost? How many crores were your profits last year? Calls for a boycott.”

But isn’t the expression of the coolie shown in the picture exactly the same expression as your maid has when you ask her to do your laundry or iron your clothes.

Why, then, the rage?

Although Sana Safinaz might not have chosen the most politically correct marketing campaign, it is a realistic one. This campaign highlights a reality that exists in our society. It acts as a mirror to those privileged enough to have access to social media websites.

The variety of socio-economic classes that exist in our country are usually not on our mind when we’re spending exorbitant amounts on designer labels.

We don’t want to be reminded of those unfortunate people who can’t even afford to feed their children when we’re trying to think up new ways to show our affluence. No. These discussions are strictly prohibited outside cafés and internet forums. That’s where we think about social issues. How dare Sana Safinaz try and shove the bitter truth when all we want to do is ogle at slender models and chic dresses?

To the people comparing this campaign to Vogue India shoot back in 2008, please go through both and try to analyze the two.

If someone thinks that boycotting Sana Safinaz will make you a human rights activist, I’m sorry to break it to you but it won’t. For that, you actually need to do something other than changing lawn brands.

I’m sure that ‘phool wala’ kid you hand the five rupees coin to at the traffic signal does not care what lawn print you are wearing.

Read more by Sara here.

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Sara Muzzammil

An A level student based in Karachi who is interested in art and blogging. She tweets as @saramuzzammil

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Avante G

    makes a lot of sense. drawing room activism must be discouraged. this kind of altruism leaves too much to be desired. Recommend

  • Kiran

    It’s confusing whether it’s a lawn ad or an LV ad. SS lawn suits are so overpriced anyway. Recommend

  • Mehreen

    Totally agree with this article. If we want to be enraged lets be enraged at the millions of children who works as domestic servants, brick makers and in factories as cheap labour. Lets be enraged at the state of women’s and minority rights in our country.

    I don’t think the Sana Safinaz campaign should be something to be enraged about. They correctly termed this as high end fashion. This will be brought by high maintenance aunties who have at least half a dozen domestic help working for them day and night. Some of the aunties probably treat their domestic help worse than coolies Recommend

  • Raheel Lakhani

    These lawn ads are nauseating. I mean they are everywhere and so distasteful.Recommend

  • PostMan

    The variety of socio-economic classes that exist in our country are usually not on our mind when we’re spending exorbitant amounts on designer labels. … How dare Sana Safinaz try and shove the bitter truth when all we want to do is ogle at slender models and chic dresses?

    Your blog and this particular assessment will only stand true if Sana Safinaz are going to donate all the money they are earning through the lawn sale on the betterment of porters. Otherwise its just gross marketing campaign. SS are highlighting the class divide in the worst possible way.

    P.S: Neeha is awesome!Recommend

  • Mehak

    Totally agree with the article. We have all become way too hateful and now we just look for reasons to criticize. Here’s another way of looking at the ad: Those coolies must have earned money by being a part of this ad.Recommend

  • BADurrani

    I don’t think the hard working men in these advertisements were to upset about having their picture taken and I’m pretty sure the monetary compensation they received benefited the welfare of their families. children are starving every day for lack of food, many people are turning to drugs and crime because of tremendous poverty but people are pissed off about two advertisements? seriously? that’s all people can find to be mad about? Recommend

  • Omair Zeeshan

    “Why the rage, then?”Recommend

  • Erum K

    Dont hate the campaign….hate what it represents the propagation of ‘begum culture’ and the widening divide of have and have-notsRecommend

  • ayesha zahid

    well, indeed there are controversies about the advertisement. Nevertheless i do not see the reason for criticizing something that might not have a lot of in-depth meaning to it. the article is well-written Sara, you should write more frequently :) Recommend

  • Nadir

    What this lawn campaign shows is how cynical, commercialized and materialistic our nations elite who can afford these prints have become. If tax dodging was not enough buying such branded goods while remaining silent as those lower down the supply chain get exploited is a travesty.

    And yes boycotts do work, it doesnt make us an activist, but in a free market, low/no taxes for the rich, which our nations elite aspire Pakistan to be, we vote with our feet.

    @Mehak: “those coolies must have earned money” Really? Have they? Were the coolies paid the same as the model? Why is throwing money at people all right?

    Whenever we talk about the poor, those in a more financially safer position always lead with the argument, “atleast they made some money….”. That doesnt help them, as thats just an excuse for the well off to justify the glaring inequality in Pakistan.

    As for:

    I’m sure that ‘phool wala’ kid you hand the five rupees coin to at the traffic signal does not care what lawn print you are wearing.

    He shouldnt be there to begin with if all the people who can afford to buy these overpriced high fashion materials paid their taxes. Recommend

  • Zarlasht Faisal

    Well since my quote has already been mentioned in this article…I thought I may as well add my two bits in over here….My maid does NOT have the same expression when I ask her to do my laundry, or iron my clothes….My maid gets her share of clothes every summer as well when I go out and buy 300 rupee lawn for myself as well…I don’t give my maid back breaking amounts of work..I don’t need to be reminded about the poverty stricken people of my country everyday…because i make SURE that they never become invisible to me…every time I step out of my house, I see poverty on the roads, I make sure that my eyes are open to it…and if sometimes I can’t give money to help people out…I make sure I make up for it with kindness. I run my own business…I make clothes as well… I employ tailors…all of whom are on good salaries….an average of about 6,000 a week…comes upto about 25,000 rupees a month…which is how much I, with a university degree, earned when I was working at Dawn News. My maid’s son also wants to learn how to cut and sew, and do embroidery…so I encourage him to sit and learn with my tailors…so one day he has a skill that will change the rest of his life…And I never feel the need to show off “affluence”. I’m sure SS the intelligent, and smart women that they are do all this..and probably alot more. No comment has been an attack on their character…just an attack on a mindless ad campaign…that I will maintain is in poor taste. And to those who say oh well it’s just an ad?…If it was JUST an ad…brands wouldn’t be going mad trying to cover every inch of canvas space with their brand message….so we all know that advertising has quite a bit of power over mindsets and perceptions. SS is a luxury brand right….have they suddenly become socially responsible that they feel it is their duty to suddenly point out the huge income disparities in our society? I hardly think so. The photographer thought the colors looked pretty in the background, the coolie’s were the RIGHT accessory…and all that jazz! Will it hurt the almighty ego all that much to admit that the marketing team messed up…and to pull one billboard? Also…I’m a little sick of the…go out there and make a change message in every ET article…you would be surprised at the number of people who do things on an individual basis to make a difference….so you really need to stop making assumptions that it’s all drawing room activism. Recommend

  • Wisk

    I would never pay such ridiculous amount for a lawn suit anyway!Recommend

  • RJ

    While I can see the outrage, I can also see the hypocrisy….The very people who cry foul over every issue will be the ones not boycotting Sana SafinazRecommend

  • Shazia Yousuf

    Exactly my sentiments: “If someone thinks that boycotting Sana Safinaz will make you a human rights activist, I’m sorry to break it to you but it won’t. For that, you actually need to do something other than changing lawn brands.

    I’m sure that ‘phool wala’ kid you hand the five rupees coin to at the traffic signal does not care what lawn print you are wearing.”

    Hundred percent agree to this! Very well said Sara.Recommend

  • Tehreem Iqbal

    Well said! And I never even wanted to get near those expensive useless designer lawns. They sell their name more than the product it self. I wish to ban Sana Safinaz.Recommend

  • Mehwish hassan sara

    I agree with the author completely and The lawn bandwagon is driving all Pakistani ladies crazy. Personally wearing a 4500 lawn jora in a poverty stricken state is unethical. we always talk about class differences and reduced buying power,this latest lawn frenzy is widening this social cleavage even more. Lets stop this crazy lawn frenzy togather….Recommend

  • sana

    To counter this culture of over spending and encourage people to buy simpler more affordable wear is a new brand called Simplify Pakistan.

  • Haq

    Activism has to start somewhere. You have to speak against at least one thing first. Doesn’t mean you are not bothered by everything else that is wrong in the world. There is zero benefit and societal good in tearing down others who are speaking up against something, even if it’s just one thing. We should be able to appreciate the good that others do too instead of just crying boo all the time when someone beats us to it.Recommend

  • Sumaira Hasan

    I think you should boycott the lawn – or any other such lawn for their outrageous prices and hence force these people to bring the prices down – and then use the money you save from buying such expensive lawn suits to help out the poor!!!! Crying out over the ad might not help and will definitely not make you a human rights activist – but if we all get together and protest over the outrageous pricing for all such lawn suits – I think it would be for a better cause!!
    Also I would like to point out that anyone who can afford a LV bag would never be spotted anywhere near these coolies or the railway station – hence the ad itself is very unrealistic !!! Recommend

  • Haseeb Uddin

    It’s a lawn ad guys! Take it easy yaar! :)
    @ author: I agree! We love being angry. Actually I think it’s our best past time :PRecommend

  • Tattimaster

    Yes! Recommend

  • Ayesha Pervez

    C mon… advertisment companies are always on the lookout for new, over the top, out of the box ideas… and this seemed pretty unique.. nothing wrong with it… rich or poor we will all go in the same 4 ft or so wide grave and will only have our deeds in front of the ALmighty. Recommend

  • Ayesha Pervez

    Us Pakistanis are toppers in two things: Criticizing and Not Forgiving. :) No wonder we re doing so well as a nation!Recommend

  • Amrita

    loved your take on the issue!Recommend

  • Sehr

    “If someone thinks that boycotting Sana Safinaz will make you a human rights activist, I’m sorry to break it to you but it won’t. For that, you actually need to do something other than changing lawn brands.” BRAVO! Recommend

  • Zainab

    I agree 100% with Zarlasht…I am a big lawn buyer and if this disgraceful campaign can prevent me from buying their clothes then i am sure that it can prevent other women also. And now you are going to say who am I say they are elitist if i buy expensive clothes myself. What I do with my money is my business however visually showing such a great divide between 2 classes is shameful. I am sure it was no SS’s intention to highlight the reality of our society they just made a stupid mistake and thought the background of coolies would look creative and cool. So for the author of this article to support such tasteless and shameful advertising is quite sad. I am sure it was SS’s PR team behind this articleRecommend

  • Shazia Yaqub

    @Zarlasht Faisal:

    Zarlasht if you do all this, let me tell you that in the Pakistani urban society you are not mainstream and my hats off to you.

    However, on average, a college educated woman of the middle upper class will buy several of these lawn suits every season. With 20 or more premium lawn exhibitions scheduled this season and each lawn suit starting at an average from Rs 2500 onwards to 6,000.

    The average per capita gdp works out to be 8000 a month. Not to speak of the quarter of our population that lives below $1 per day. Each suit would be worth a daily wage work workers monthly salary. And comparing this to the poorest quarter of the population, two poor hungry mouths vs one designer lawn suit…An outfit that is conveniently disposed off at the end of 3 months to “the maid” who often is often paid an equivalent at the end of the month the cost of the lawn suit and has to feed a family of 6.

    And that is an everyday fact of life that we conveniently close our eyes to when we shop at these exhibitions, or at the malls, or eat out at restaurants. Sana and Safinaz just did a great job of highlighting this…and we should be grateful.

    .If the “maims” are brave enough, please do tamp down on summer wardrobe makeovers and be a little more sensible when buying lawn or other seemingly “disposable” clothing…. do not just boycott Sana and Safinaz…make sure you boycott all designer lawn suits this season…and donate to a worthy cause… After all, shouldn’t we be putting our money where our mouth is? Recommend

  • Nauman

    A very well written article…a little bit of trivia…the model in the advert comes from a very humble background, rumor has it that she was a maid. So kudos to her for being the face of Sana Safinaz, and aspiring all the begums to dress up like her…Recommend

  • Citizen

    These designer lawns are addictive i accept ,i am my self into it ,but im sick of it now. It has just widened the gap between rich and poor. Add was offensive , More of a LV add than a lawn add. I agree with Author completelyRecommend

  • Muft Mashwara

    I agree with PostMan above. This would’ve been excellent if a portion of the profits were being spent on a porter-support program. Think Ben & Jerry’s!
    Also, isn’t it time we hear from Sana and Safinaz? The sooner they respond with a statement on social media, the better. Recommend

  • Sarah Haider

    @Raheel Lakhani: seconded! Recommend

  • http://deleted Lubna Saad

    The add reminds me of the British era when English ladies used to come with their expensive brand suitcases from England and the local coolies used to carry their luggage. We are still slaves at heart.Recommend

  • Elle

    What a waste of SPACE! Seems like an ad to re-position the designer duo.
    Tribune eds please note: You MISSED the MARK here!Recommend

  • Sana

    The sooner we boycott this divide, the better! Though i wont agree that “it was just an ad” and hence can get away with anything, the ad did highlight the gap between rich and the poor. But i do partially agree with the author, thats what we are and thats what we do. If not all of us, but most of our “kitty party aunties” go and buy these useless expensive clothes, which they wear only once and never repeat. I mean seriously, a country like ours where people dont know if they will get their next meal or not, we are running after the brands and lawns and who wears what and who carries what. Though i am sure its their money, and they can use it the way they like, but the ground reality doesnt change, and thats exactly what has been shown in the ad. Having said that, not supporting the ad by any means, its offensive and shouldn’t be campaigned like that!
    And women of Pakistan, wake up!! There is more to life than just brands. Be more productive! Dont just throw money because its summers and the lawn race is on, but buy something that you have truly earned. Be ambitious please, no one will dare call us a drawing room activist then :)Recommend

  • Maria

    “If someone thinks that boycotting Sana Safinaz will make you a human rights activist, I’m sorry to break it to you but it won’t. For that, you actually need to do something other than changing lawn brands.
    I’m sure that ‘phool wala’ kid you hand the five rupees coin to at the traffic signal does not care what lawn print you are wearing.”

    After all the anger, I’d still ask
    “Why the anger, then?” Recommend

  • Shoaib

    Just an ad so why be offended. Its our reality so why be offended. Next time lets have a model wearing pretty clothes and standing in the middle of bomb site with freshly blown up limbs lying around. Its is our reality after all – bomb explosions, bodies. SS is serving up an ad not a social commentary piece so to use the poor as props is extremely bad taste, given the disparity in our society it further dehumanizes them. Saying that its comparable to having servants does not work. More comparable to having servants and flaunting your wealth in their face and in society’s through them. If you think being rich, acting like Mary Antoinette, using poor as props and objects is ok, then the ad is ok, else not. Recommend

  • Haya

    I honestly judge whoever is defending this ad.It is
    And the author is clearly a friend of Sana Safinaz’s.Recommend

  • Shazia

    @Haya and @Shoaib

    This is not about defending the ad.

    It is about understanding the societal ethos behind the ad and our responsibility behind it. This is really what all of us do… Do our best to look pretty and close our eyes to the daily inequalities that we tolerate and sometimes propagate.

    I mean how many of the many people who are complaining on this blog are planning to make new outfits this year? How many travel daily in public transport versus their own cars? How many of us are planning on going on a train trip and give tips to all the coolies? How many are using technological devices to write comments on this blog? Are they not making a statement by being insatiable in their consumerism? Obviously there is a demand for designer wear from designer lawn to Gucci bags – and all their billboards are up in the city and no one complains about them.

    I believe Sana and Safinaz ad just reflects society as it is today…unfair, inequitable, and selfish. I mean no one complains about the countless pretty girls who are lounging around on the other ads being a burden to society are they?

    Once again, my request is that the next time we complain about the beggars, or the children cleaning car windows or the maasi asking for a raise, we have to understand that each one of us is making a clear choice. Increasing our status by buying designer wear …or equalizing status of those around us by propagating fair wages.

    It is easy to point fingers and difficult to set an example…but we know that if we set enough examples, markets for these products would disappear.

    Here is an action plan for everyone do it if you’re brave enough:
    1- stop buying designer brands
    2- 2 less suits in your wardrobe would roughly translate into an additional Rs500 rupees in their wages.
    3- Donate the amount of your suits to Saylani or Edhi any other suitable soup kitchens. the price of one suit would feed one poor person for a month
    4-Lastly, do think about traveling by by train.Our railway is losing loads of money. Sponsor it by using it anytime you want to go across the country.Recommend

  • FJ

    A lawn ad portraying the income gap…trying to show that poor people are inferior? Yes, it is totally wrong way of marketing a product. A big NO to Sana Safina lawn from now on!Recommend

  • jj

    every add z depicting da picture of high standard of living either it z add of simple soft drink,ice cream, shampoo etc so why should we except from the add of lawn . should be offensive or inferiority complex free. today itz just ridiculous to why adds are showing thiz?just to write and raise voice against this phenomena of culture of lust that being prevailed in the media now a days.Recommend

  • Sara Muzzammil

    Thanks for the feedback guys! Really appreciate it. :)Recommend

  • Rabeeya

    So according to you SS is raising a social issue of inequality? Let me ask you how much did these porters made after appearing in the famous brand name campaign. Surely Neha, the model of this advertisment got paid a very decent amount. SS will sell their lawn in thousands of rupees. If their purpose was to highlight the social injustice then did they even bothered to pay a decent amount to these porters after getting their services?Recommend

  • Me

    My question is.. Did SS take permission to use LV in their campaign?Recommend

  • RMK

    I’ll reiterate what I said on FB to defenders of this ad campaign (with some minor ammendments):

    -I’ve heard people use the argument that it’s just art and we shouldn’t censor freedom of speech. Freedom of speech is an individual’s right. Whether it extends to companies is debatable (I’m no legal expert, I could be wrong) but at the very least consumers hold them to a higher standard of social responsibility – and for good reason. (To boil it down; with great power comes great responsiblity.) Neither is it art – it’s advertising – it’s an image designed to make you as a consumer WANT that commodity. I won’t even get into how much this fails as an ad anyway, one only needs to read the various interpretations by the defenders to understand how confusing and unclear its message has been.

    The shaming of people who expressed their displeasure with this campaign is somewhat distressing. Making assumptions about individuals based on (admittedly true) generalisations about the Pakistani elite is tacky… to say the least. It places the onus on the individual to defend and account for their personal lives – which NONE of us have asked the owners of Sana Safinaz to do. Our criticism is of the brand – not the individuals behind the brand. Having said that, I am totally willing to defend my lifestyle choices, which I try to be conscientious about, and prove my “cred” if that’s demanded of me – even though I’m not the one making crores in profits or making assumptions about the kinds of people who defend this ad campaign.

    That isn’t to say that the issues behind this image aren’t systemic or that as consumers or individuals we aren’t also responsible for the systemic subordination of the working class. But Sana Safinaz, as one of the leading brands of this burgeoning industry is responsible for legitimizing poor labor practices and dehumanizing media portrayals of the working class – when they could be setting precedents for better business ethics.

    The fact that Sana Safinaz’s response so far has been to ignore criticism of this campaign is in itself telling. There’s an assumption that everyone loves designer lawn (or any kind of high-end designer merchandise) and would buy it if they could. It simply isn’t true. I’m sure that for every critic of this ad campaign there will be 20 who will buy Sana Safinaz products anyway – but that in itself is not, and should not be construed by the brand as vindication.Recommend

  • Media Watchdog? Really?

    Media Watchdog? What a joke. Here’s a definition pulled off of Wikipedia:

    “Watchdog journalism aims to hold accountable public personalities and institutions, whose functions impact social and political life. The term “lapdog journalism”, for journalism biased in favour of personalities and institutions, is sometimes used as a conceptual opposite to watchdog journalism.”

    That is, holding MEDIA (if you need more spelling out, the people responsible for this ad campaign) responsible – not the people who respond to it.

    Why is it then that the responses from some of the FB critics and bloggers writing about this have been more intelligent with a better understanding of the world than this blog post on a leading English daily? Seriously ET…

    Yes, we know your readership mainly consists of the elite and upwardly-mobile but that doesn’t mean you have to be their lapdogs and appease them with herd-minded reductive reasoning.Recommend

  • sana

    you might want to read this article on your own site about how much the coolies said they were paid and what the production company claims they were paid. Recommend

  • Zac

    Two wrongs do not make a right. Just because the common man is making mistakes in everyday life doesn’t mean you should start glorifying those acts of theirs. Personally I could not care less what you are doing, merely responding to how you’re justifying this. The reason, why I don’t care is because I have had my fair share of arguments with people in Pakistan and abroad as to why there are people working on slave wages at homes and offices. This is precisely what happens when the society is corrupted of its morals, no social justice is given to the poor and they would rather work for minimum wages than die of hunger. In a way, our society, despite massive unemployment is providing ‘something better than nothing’ to the poor. If we abolish the slave labor, should we take responsibility for their desperate conditions that they’d find themselves in afterwards since the Govt wont do anything about it, or should we let the society be. An ever elusive question! But I see one thing clearly here, do not mock them at least. Do not rub it in there face please! Recommend

  • Nadya

    This article is pointless. It cannot mask the arrogance that is portrayed by the picture, the social divide. It may be realistic for a certain class of people but it is highly derogatory and I object to having to see such nonsense.
    We are all in our capacity trying to make a living and while the coolies may have had no objection to being photographed, for the possible compensation they were given, it does NOT make it right.
    My two cents.Recommend

  • nha

    At the very least the adds are derivative and lack imagination in the sense that the overall image is a ‘global’ one a la Vuitton and what many other designers have already captured elsewhere. Sana-Safinaz could have endeavored to be more original. When I saw the adds, the first thought was: Another copy! Copy-cat nation! At a substantive level, the adds evoke the ethos of marketing/advertising campaigns across the world where the drive for profits sanction the use of the human body (especially that of labor) by commodifying it. Sure the class ‘chasm’ speaks to us through these advertisements. But that is precisely what the world of marketing endeavors to exploit. Without such exploitation, there would be no profits for advertisers, marketing gurus, and designer dames. The adds sell an image of the ‘good life’ and the vast majority buy a given product on the basis of how well such images capture the imagination. The adverts are inviting, pretty, (highly derivative!), and unsettling. Precisely what the advertisers aimed to achieve. The offense is not in the image. The offense is in the socio-economic system that buttresses the image, that enables it, sanctions it, legitimizes, and of which we are all a part. Recommend

  • DPC

    Lets boycott everything elitist in this country:
    1. McDonalds
    2. KFC
    3. Zamzama
    4. Fashion Designers
    5. Social clubs etc.

    We are a poor country and everyone should act poor!Recommend

  • Aadil Aijaz


  • Kamran Azim

    Take it as humorous and move on. Isn’t it coolie’s job to pick up the bags? It would have been offensive if a retarded person carrying it.
    I looked at the picture and smiled. Not bad: its better to carry a bag be that LV or Tod’s but still its much better than carrying 3 big bags (2 on head and 1 in hand). Recommend

  • Boorie Rana

    I agree with Shoaib, its exactly what I think. No matter what the reality is, you just don’t go about using it to your advantage! And how the hell is this ad comparable to having maids and servants at home??? Unfortunately, with the given literacy rates and the economic condition of our country we don’t have enough jobs. I hope the writer is not forgetting that this is one way they can earn!

    This ad is telling the people that “Oh you know what you’re poor and you can’t do nothing about it! IN YOUR FACE!”.

    I’m disgusted. Recommend

  • Parvez

    Ooooookay !! as the comment police decided to scrap my first comment, let me try again.
    I feel tolerance is a virtue that we must try to develop. No matter how hard I tried I just could not figure out what all the fuss was about.Recommend

  • http://usa amzu

    By showing those coolies!!..makes me think!! should we buy those clothes or give the money to the coolies??Recommend

  • Basit Saeed

    Personally, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with this ad. The tight scrutiny this ad has been subject to, makes me realize that new media spaces is not only getting popularity, but also giving protesting and expression of ideas and feelings, a new dimension in Pakistan.
    No wonder the government wants to censor the internet! Recommend

  • AnonToronto – Interesting post on this in a friends blog comparing it to the indian vogue campaignRecommend

  • AnonToronto
  • Uzma

    well yes, when one person starts talking about something/ being offended by it everyone has to jump on the bandwagon, but if one ad is what it takes to make people snap out of the obsession with lawn, i’m all for it. i actually did go the link given for the 2008 vogue shoot, and i dont see the stark difference you are implying. those ads and the sana safinaz one are downright distasteful, whether you think having household help nonethless makes us hypocritical or not. Recommend

  • Sadia

    Ms Muzamil you have your head on backwards. just because things exist in reality does not mean they should be used to market something. Rape, murder, poverty, racism, corruption are all social evils. They should not be given legitimacy in pop culture. If sana safinaz are trying to portray a reality they should make a documentary benefitting the poor and not an ad campaign benefitting our delusional elites at the expense of the poverty in contrast.
    We all want the good life. but this is goes a bit far, especially for the part of society that can only offered to carry luggage for the rich and would have to sell a kidney to but a LV bag. Recommend

  • Ramlah

    Okay man this ad does not make any sense, I mean LV bag, a train station, coolies and Sana Safinaz. Sigh!! What are they portraying? They are cutting down on the price, but the coolies family cannot be their target market, the model traveling by train in our country where the plane is not reliable, and she is carrying LV bag, I mean LV dude even I cannot afford it. Recommend

  • rafazliban

    wow arent we making an issue out of everything.

    dont u ever ask your maids to carry your bags for you??? whats so controversial here? did u even ask SS what they had in their minds when coming with this ad. it probably has an artistic component to it. its not like shes showing shes better than these old men in her picture. she was actually kind enough to offer them a role in this shoot. you people never even take a photo with your maid because its ‘insulting’ to your upper middle class status. damn.

    we have started making issues out of everything GOD-Live and let live dammit.Recommend