Dolce & Gabbana say 'Duibuqi' for PR debacle in China

Dolce & Gabbana apologize for 'racist' video and anti-China rant on Instagram

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(Image from weibo.com/dolcegabbanaofficial)

(Image from weibo.com/dolcegabbanaofficial)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- The founders of Italian luxury fashion house Dolce & Gabbana have issued another apology today on Weibo for their public relations fiasco, which started with a video that has been deemed racist by Chinese, along with comments that denigrated China that were leaked from one of the founder's Instagram messages.

The controversy started when the luxury fashion company released a video showing a female Chinese model being told by a male voice how to use chopsticks to eat various Italian dishes. At one point, the narrator asks the female model about the phallic shaped cannoli, "Is it too huge for you?" Chinese netizens cried foul at what they considered a mockery of their culture and a perpetuation of racial stereotypes, prompting Dolce & Gabbana to cancel a fashion show originally slated for Shanghai.

Screenshots then surfaced of what appeared to be a private message sent by co-founder Gabbana's via his Instagram account referring to China as "a country of s***," among other vulgar comments. Dolce & Gabbana apologized on Instagram, claiming that their accounts had been hacked. However, the apology did not mollify Chinese consumers, and the company soon found its products were being pulled from Chinese store shelves and online retailers, such as Alibaba's Tmall and JD.com.

In the video apology, D&G founders Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana are seen seated at a table dressed in plain, black shirts and with somber expressions on their faces. The two men then alternate making statements in Italian that included Gabbana saying "We offer our sincerest apologies to Chinese people worldwide,"and Dolce saying, "We hope our misunderstanding of Chinese culture can be forgiven."

Towards the end Dolce emphasized that, "We’ve always been very crazy about China, we’ve visited it a lot. We’ve been to many cities. We love your culture.”

Two closed by saying together in Italian "From the depths of our heart we apologize," and then closed by saying in Mandarin "duibuqi" (對不起, I'm sorry).