Amazon is pulling subway ads showing Nazi-inspired propaganda following outrage.
New York City subway riders were shocked on Tuesday morning when they found themselves riding in a car decked out with the Nazi-themed eagle, iron cross and symbols from Japan’s Imperial Army of World War ll. The symbols were on every seat in a train at the 42nd street shuttle at Times Square.
The ads were for Amazon’s new program, The Man in the High Castle, a alternate history thriller that depicts an alternative America if we had lost the war.
Reaction was swift and intense.
One comment said: "Worst-taste marketing stunt ever?"
Another was: "What the Heil!"
So NOBODY at Amazon or whatever marketing firm thought putting a bunch of Nazi stuff on subway cars to promote "High Castle" was a bad move— patrick (@pattymo) November 24, 2015
I can't imagine a meeting where no one thought to go "hey no don't wrap the subway seats in Nazi symbols guys"— Amanda Nelson (@ImAmandaNelson) November 23, 2015
An MTA spokesman said the campaign meets its guidelines for content-neutral ads.
"Unless you're saying that you believe Amazon is advocating for a Nazi takeover of the United States, then it meets the standards," the spokesperson said. "They’re advertising a show."
But on Tuesday afternoon, a spokesperson for the Metropolitan Transit Authority said: "Amazon has just decided to pull the ads."
A spokesman for the Anti-Defamation League of New York expressed concern about the context of the ads, saying: "On the television program which explains this is the notion of an America controlled by Hitler, you get that context. On the train a Nazi symbol is viscerally offensive."