For Easyjet, Calabria was the land of mafia history and earthquakes… a small presentation that the Italians hardly tasted, provoking an outcry which led the British company to modify it and to apologize.
“For an authentic glimpse of the hectic Italian life, nothing better than Calabria. This region suffers from an obvious absence of tourists because of its history of mafia activity and earthquakes, and the lack of iconic cities like Rome and Venice capable of attracting Instagram fans, “wrote EasyJet to present “Lamezia”, the main airport in the region.
“One word for Easyjet: shame! “
While Calabria shelters in particular Greek vestiges of Magna Grecia, the text immediately caused a lively controversy and led the Minister for Territorial Cohesion, Peppe Provenzano, to ask Easyjet to “apologize, to Calabria and to Italy ”. “One word for Easyjet: shame! Calabria is a wonderful land with exceptional people. Calabria is a welcoming land, which, with all due respect for those who write the opposite, does not suffer from the absence of tourists, ”tweeted Ernesto Magorno, senator for the Italia Viva party.
One word for #EasyJet: SHAME!
#Calabria is a wonderful land with exceptional people. Calabria is a land that welcomes and, with all due respect to those who write the opposite, it is a region that does not suffer from the absence of tourists. pic.twitter.com/pRVhAPKwgM
— Ernesto Magorno (@Emagorno) June 23, 2020
This “pseudo marketing operation” is “aggressive, short-sighted and has a clear racist flavor”, and represents “a sum of unspeakable prejudices”, lambasted the president of the Calabria Region, Jole Santelli, who said “having immediately written a letter of protest to the company “.
An internal investigation
Faced with this outcry, Easyjet quickly apologized and changed the impugned text. “EasyJet apologizes to all Calabrians and to the Calabria Region for the description (…) The original intention of the text was to underline that Calabria was undervalued abroad from a tourist point of view”, a indicated the company in a press release relayed by the Italian press agencies, by specifying having carried out “an internal investigation to understand what had happened and to ensure that it does not happen again”.
“Calabria is a very important land for us, which we love and which we have always promoted with numerous flights to Lamezia Terme. This is demonstrated by the fact that the first flight on June 15, which coincides with the resumption of post-containment operations, was to Lamezia Terme airport, “she added.