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Cheerios Not Pulling Mixed-Race Family Commercial

Cheerios "Just Checking" ad

Cheerios is standing by its “Just Checking” commercial, which features a white mother, black father, and biracial daughter.

In the 30-second ad, the little girl asks her mother if it’s true that Cheerios are good for the heart. The mother reads the box and her daughter smiles and takes the box. The commercial cuts to the father sleeping on the couch with a pile of Cheerios on his chest.

The commercial received numerous racist comments on YouTube, and the comments section was eventually disabled. The commercial was posted on May 28 and has received 2,463,003 views, 32,468 likes, and 1,774 comments at the time of this writing.

Cheerios’ vice president of marketing, Camille Gibson, said that it is the first time the ad campaign has featured an interracial couple, and that General Mills cast actors that reflect the changing and diverse population of the United States.

“We felt like we were reflecting an American family,” she said. Gibson said it was also the first time that the company had to disable the comments section on one of its videos. The commercial will continue to run as scheduled for several months, and Gibson said Cheerios isn’t planning any changes. She did not say whether the company would continue to feature interracial ads or not.

Despite the backlash, Gibson said, “Consumers are actually responding very positively to the ad.”

Charles Malik Whitfield, who played the sleeping father, thanked supporters of the commercial.

“Let’s not pretend racism doesn’t exist. Let’s not pretend that we’ve come so far. Let’s be conscious of and appreciate the noise, and the negativity, because there’s so much work to be done,” he said.

Laura Ries, who has written five books on marketing and is the co-founder of consulting firm Ries Ries, said “The reality is that in general most big companies don’t want to take a lot of risks. The ability for nameless, faceless people to get on the Internet is out there, and companies don’t like it when people yell at them.”

Ries added, “It’s important for brands to take risks in line with what their brand is about. In this case Cheerios is the first food of children everywhere.”

What do you think of Cheerios decision not to pull the “Just Checking” ad?

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Comments

13 Responses to “Cheerios Not Pulling Mixed-Race Family Commercial”

  1. Leah Johnson

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with this commerical and should not be pulled because of the silly people who apparently, are racist. They are making this into something that it actually isn't even about and shame on them for that.

    And someone has made a very valid point regarding this and I'll bring it up: how is that so many people are so accepting of two people of the same gender being married to one another but have a huge problem with a man and a woman of different skin colors being married to each other?

    The commerical is about cheerios being healthy food to eat, NOT about race.

  2. Leah Johnson

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with this commerical and should not be pulled because of the silly people who apparently, are racist. They are making this into something that it actually isn't even about and shame on them for that.

    And someone has made a very valid point regarding this and I'll bring it up: how is that so many people are so accepting of two people of the same gender being married to one another but have a huge problem with a man and a woman of different skin colors being married to each other?

    The commerical is about cheerios being healthy food to eat, NOT about race.

  3. Charles Haynes

    There is only one race anyway, the human race. We all came from Adam and Eve. Race is an evolutionary idea, Darwin argued in his book 'The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life' (yes, that's the full title of it) that white people are more evolved than other races and that men are greater than women. Unfortunately, this trash is taught in school so you get this kind of thing in society on such a large scale.

  4. Charles Haynes

    There is only one race anyway, the human race. We all came from Adam and Eve. Race is an evolutionary idea, Darwin argued in his book 'The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life' (yes, that's the full title of it) that white people are more evolved than other races and that men are greater than women. Unfortunately, this trash is taught in school so you get this kind of thing in society on such a large scale.

  5. Eva Osmer

    Great point! (SMH) She's such a beautiful little girl.

  6. Eva Osmer

    Great point! (SMH) She's such a beautiful little girl.

  7. Susan Fisher

    I LOOOOVE the ad, the kid is great, and the sentiment is in line with all the recent Cheerios heart ads. Keep it and do more.

  8. Sandra Kioski

    The ad is only showing what is true today and what is happening in the world. The little girl is gorgeous, as cute as a button and I hope they don't cave in and pull the add….the ad is promoting health, Cheerio's are healthy and the little girl want's her ad dad to have a healthy heart…. come on people this is only an ad but it is about real life, maybe this isn't for you, but for some love sees only love, and I could go on and on but what I think doesn't matter, it's only my opinion, same as everyone else…..