Ili is a cool-looking new wearable device that translates speech into different languages. The user speaks into the device in English, Japanese or Chinese (Mandarin, presumably?) and it will reproduce the words in any of those languages. Pretty great idea. It's, like, the future.
The commercial that's been circulating for the product, however, is pretty gross.
In the cringeworthy ad for the device, created by a Japanese company called Logbar, a white spokesman named Dean is seen roaming the streets of Tokyo and using the device to ask random women to kiss him. Dean is from the United Kingdom and doesn't speak Japanese, but with ili, sexual harassment has no language barriers! At one point, he actually chases a woman demanding "just one kiss."
"It's very normal in the UK."
This shit is gross. Congratulations, Logbar. You've created what looks like an incredible, powerful piece of technology... and demonstrated its use in the worst way possible. Right out of the gate, you've shown how easily creepers can go international with their creepiness. (Not that language barriers ever stopped creeps before.)
The device is aimed at travelers, but I'm guessing now there's a significant market for it among predators.
Logbar unveiled the device this week at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, promising that ili will eventually be able to translate French, Thai, Korean, Spanish, Italian and Arabic. It'll be available for pre-order sometime this spring.
Please, people. Use this device for good and not evil.