Fashion House Tries to Deflect Fury in China

Dolce & Gabbana blames hackers for offensive social media posts
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 21, 2018 5:14 PM CST
Fashion House Blames Hackers for Offensive Posts on China
A man walks past a outlet of Dolce & Gabbana in Beijing Wednesday.   (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

The Italian luxury fashion house Dolce & Gabbana apologized Wednesday for insulting remarks about China made on its Instagram accounts, but it also said the accounts had been hacked. Chinese celebrities reacted angrily after screenshots of the conversations were posted on social media, and several said they would boycott a Dolce & Gabbana show scheduled for Wednesday night in Shanghai. The company later said the show, an extravaganza meant as a tribute to China with Asian stars invited to take front-row seats, had been called off. The screenshots appear to show co-founder Stefano Gabbana referring to China with crude terms and emoji as he defends promotional videos that had sparked controversy earlier. Separately, the Dolce & Gabbana Instagram account used offensive language in another exchange.

Dolce & Gabbana apologized on Instagram and said the accounts had been hacked. "We are very sorry for any distress caused by these unauthorized posts," it said. "We have nothing but respect for China and the people of China." Zhang Ziyi, who starred in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, said on one of her social media accounts that the Italian brand had "disgraced itself." The studio for pop idol Karry Wang, an Asia-Pacific brand ambassador for Dolce & Gabbana, informed the fashion house that it would terminate all cooperation with the brand. Stefano Gabbana also wrote on his Instagram that his account had been hacked, adding, "I love China and Chinese culture. I'm sorry for what happened." The three promotional videos feature a Chinese woman using chopsticks to eat pizza and other Italian food. Chinese social media users called the videos racist.

(Read more Dolce and Gabbana stories.)

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