Saturday, February 6, 2016

Budweiser ignores Richmond’s Chinese-sign standard

Budweiser ignores Richmond’s 

Chinese-sign standards

The Chinese language dominates this Budweiser sign outside Richmond city hall, despite staff being told to advise all businesses in the city to make their signs 50-per-cent English. (Photo by Chak Au)

Posted by: 

Richmond Councillor Chak Au is upset that a major beer corporation, Budweiser, has disregarded the city’s standards regarding Chinese-language signs.
Au sent me a photo of the large Budweiser beer sign on a Translink bus stop directly outside Richmond city hall.
The Chinese language dominates the Budweiser sign, despite Richmond city staff being told to advise all businesses in the city that all signs should include at least 50 per cent English.
“How many times we have advised businesses and advertising agencies not to do this and we still have this ad right in front of City Hall!,” Chak Au said in an email.
“The point I am trying to make is that sometimes it is not the Chinese themselves who create the problem.”
The Budweiser ad promotes a package of beer meant for Chinese New Year, the year of the monkey, which begins later this month. Half of the 200,000 population of Richmond is ethnic Chinese.
The same red Budweiser beer ad was spotted on a Translink bus stop on Fourth Avenue at Collingwood in Vancouver late Tuesday.
However, Au reported late Tuesday that the Budweiser ad on the bus stop outside Richmond city hall, about which he complained to city staff, was taken down some time in the middle of Tuesday.
In a file photo Richmond Councillor Chak Au points to another Translink sign in Richmond dominated by the Chinese language.
In a file photo Richmond Councillor Chak Au points to another Translink sign in Richmond that was dominated by the Chinese language.
Au is disappointed with Translink, which is responsible for Metro Vancouver transit. Many have criticized the B.C. Crown corporation for frequently permitting Chinese-only signs on its buses.
“I wish they could have applied greater sensitivity on this issue. I don’t believe the Chinese community will have any objections if TransLink requires English to be more prominent in signs or commercial ads in its territory.”
After years of debate and citizen activism, Richmond council decided late last year to hire a staff member to visit businesses and advise them to voluntarily make sure all signs are at least 50-per-cent English.
Au was one of the earliest political proponents of including 50-per cent English in all signs.
Richmond city council is also preparing to combat a spate of temporary Chinese-only signs, which are in many ways a bigger issue than the permanent signs that need to be approved by city staff.