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This article was published on February 3, 2012

Samsung’s products could be banned in Iran, over an ad it didn’t produce

Samsung’s products could be banned in Iran, over an ad it didn’t produce
Nancy Messieh
Story by

Nancy Messieh

Lesotho-born and raised, Nancy Messieh, The Next Web's Middle East Editor, is an Egyptian writer and photographer based in Cairo, Egypt. Fol Lesotho-born and raised, Nancy Messieh, The Next Web's Middle East Editor, is an Egyptian writer and photographer based in Cairo, Egypt. Follow her on Twitter, her site or Google+ or get in touch at [email protected]

An Israeli commercial may be on the verge of causing Samsung’s products to be banned entirely in Iran, as well as bringing an end to Iran’s trade ties with South Korea.

A commercial produced by Israeli TV station Hot, depicts Israeli Mosaad agents disguised as Iranian women, and while looking at a Samsung Galaxy Tablet, they accidentally blow up an Iranian nuclear plant. The entire advertisement can be seen below:

According to Press TV, Iran’s Head of the Parliament’s Energy Committee Arsalan Fat’hipour accused Samsung of producing the ad to “curry favour with Israel”, adding that even if Samsung apologized it would not be sufficient.

In the Middle East, Samsung itself is working on damage control, distancing itself from the commercial completely, which is actually advertising a special promotion launched by the Israeli TV station Hot, in which they offer Samsung tablets to their subscribers.

Samsung’s Dubai office issued a statement condemning the ad, while in Iran, Samsung clarified that the electronic company had nothing to do with the ad, which had been produced by the Israeli TV network.

Immediately the ad caused ripples in the media, as well as in Iran, where the inevitable Facebook pages calling for a boycott have been created, and today Iran announced its drastic plan in which it is considering boycotting the company.

While the advertisement is certainly not in the best of taste, and understandably offensive for Iranians, lashing out at Samsung hints at the fact that Iranian authorities are not seeing the full picture.

The ad is a painful reminder that companies can find themselves in the crossfire through no fault of their own. The company faces a potential boycott based on an ad that they did not produce, while on YouTube the video has become a stomping ground for politicized and juvenile trolling.

Hot TV’s ad has done nothing but bring on another slinging match, with one side accused of being humourless, and the other of being offensive, while Samsung is caught in the middle. Meanwhile, the potential boycott has also no doubt sky-rocketed views of the ad that may have gone unnoticed by the vast majority.