Leica-Branded Video Leads to Company’s Name Being Banned on the Internet in China


We told you yesterday about the alleged Leica commercial that featured, among other things, the famous picture of “Tank Man” from the Tiananmen Square incident in Beijing in 1989 and that this caused a huge controversy in China, as you can imagine.

Well, today the word Leica is banned from Chinese social media and Internet search because of the controversy.

Image by Pavel Fertikh

And that has to be awkward for Leica which is, as you might recall, one of Huawei’s major partners for lenses on their smartphones.

It’s basically a big awkward mess that’s only getting worse by the day as FStoppers reports.

Initially it was claimed that the ad was not an official Leica advertisement even though it had the company’s branding all over it.

This is apparently not correct as the launch of the ad, called “The Hunt,” was actually commented upon by people tied to Leica’s marketing efforts in Brazil.

Leica’s Brazilian marketing agency F/Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi told PetaPixel at the launch of the ad that it was, “Inspired by stories of photographers who spared no efforts for everyone to see reality, Leica launches today a new production dedicated to these professionals. It is a unique narrative about risk, passion, and history.”

As of press, anyone trying to use the word Leica on social media in China gets some variant of the following according to FStoppers. Weibo warns its users that using the term could be “violating laws, regulations, or the Weibo community guidelines.”

Nonetheless, Leica is sticking to their original story and that the ad “was not an officially sanctioned marketing film commissioned by the company […] Leica Camera AG must therefore distance itself from the content shown in the video and regrets any misunderstandings or false conclusions that may have been drawn.”

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Kehl is our staff photography news writer and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing and you can get to know him better here

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