Chinese property developer trips over red tape after topless model sales stunt
- Internet users say body paint stunt to sell houses either ‘vulgar’ or ‘art’
- Planning authorities order halt because company doesn’t have licence to sell
A property company in southwest China that used topless models covered in body paint to promote a development has run into trouble with planning authorities.
After photos of Nanning Weirun Investment Company’s models went viral at the weekend, city officials in Nanning, Guangxi, told the company on Monday to halt sales because it had not obtained a licence, China Youth Daily reported.
On Friday, Nanning Weirun hired models and painted their torsos with messages and images to promote the South Station New City development.
Many users of Sina Weibo, China’s Twitter, criticised the promotion as “vulgar”, while others thought it was “fine” and described it as “a form of action art”.
Some posted pictures of the models on their own social media accounts and asked, “Which type of house do you choose?”
An employee at Nanning Weirun told the news portal Btime.com that the bodypainting promotion was a one-off.
Officials from industry and commerce authorities told the website that the advertising could not be regarded as fake because did not involve false marketing or exaggeration.
They said it should be up to the authorities to decide if the advertising was pornographic.
Police said they would look into the matter.