Their attempt to have a slogan read, ‘Greetings, friend’, effectively said, ‘Greetings, death.’
‘Kia ora’ was the right fit, while ‘mate’ was not.
“There is a growing trend among international companies to try and reflect local culture in their marketing. Done well it is awesome, done poorly it is a major risk,” Stuff quoted communications expert Cas Carter as saying.
“The blunder is even greater because ‘mate’ is such a well-known Maori word because it is in our most well-known haka – which has been seen all over the world.”
When the languages don’t mix well. pic.twitter.com/3piZIoptAE
— Waikato Reo (@waikatoreo) October 14, 2018
Putting aside the failure to recognise the meaning of ‘mate’ in te reo Māori, I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone say “kia ora, mate” when speaking in te reo Pākehā. It sounds like trying too hard.
— Copy and Content New Zealand (@surayacasey) October 15, 2018
When attempts at cultural sensitivity go bad. In Te Reo Māori, “kia ora mate’ means “greetings death”. While high-sugar soft drinks aren’t great, especially for dental health, they are not as far I know immediately lethal. https://t.co/Vi5CN3pw56
— Darren Davis (@DarrenDavis10) October 14, 2018