In recent years, e-shopping has become a staple part of everyone’s lives. Names such as Shopee and Lazada are now common in households and getting things delivered straight to your house is a usual occurrence. However, it seems Lazada may have messed up with their latest advertisement.
The Royal Thai Army has just announced that they will be boycotting Lazada. Apparently, one of the shipping company’s latest adverts took a stab at Thailand’s royal family. As such, the Thai army decided to take a stand against them.
The issue began after an ad for Lazada 5.5 made on TikTok by influencer Aniwat Prathumthi went viral. The video shows two girls, one of whom is Aniwat, promoting the sale. She was joined by another influencer, Thidaporn Chaokuwiang, who played a girl in a wheelchair.
Thai citizens claimed the character in the wheelchair was a mockery of Princess Chulabhorn, as it resembled her in many ways. Furthermore, it is well-known that the princess requires a wheelchair as she has Lupus, an autoimmune disease. It led to netizens like Street Hero V3 asking who was responsible for its creation. Additionally, they claimed that one of the influencers was known for mocking national figures in Thailand.
Although the video was removed and Lazada apologised for the “emotional damage” caused, it appears it wasn’t enough. According to CNA, an army spokeswoman said the video was “offensive to the monarchy” and “caused disunity in Thai society“. As such, the members of the army have been prohibited from using the platform, both for ordering items and for delivery purposes.
Aside from the royal army, the Thai government may also join them in taking a stand. Chaiwut Thanakamanusorn, Minister of Digital Economy and Society, stated that the government was considering legal action against those involved. This would include the influencers, the advertising agency responsible for the video and Lazada. However, the ad agency claims it was not involved with any footage related to the video.
Lazada has yet to make a statement regarding the boycott. But citizens and Thai brands are already making their own stance known with the #BanLAZADA tag. Also, Thailand has always been strict about defamation, insults and threats towards their royal family, promising a maximum of 15 years in jail for each individual offence.
Well, hopefully they manage to resolve the issue soon. For now, Thai citizens will simply have to find another way to get their goods.
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