Apple has removed an image of a same-sex couple with their two babies from its Mother’s Day advertising in France, Germany, Italy, South Korea, Turkey and Japan.
The video advert, which uses photographs pulled from social media that have been “shot on iPhone”, has been shown in the run-up to Mother’s Day in each country.
The version of the 30-second ad that played in the US, Australian, Canadian and Mexico included an image of prodigious Instagram users Melanie and Vanessa Roy from Waxhaw, North Carolina, with their two children, Jax Izzo and Ero Kix, lying on a bed and smiling at the camera with the caption “by Vanessa R”.
But the image of the family of four was removed from the version of the ad shown in other countries. Those versions, which are also 30 seconds, contained an image of Melanie Roy with Ero Kix – but not both Jax Izzo or Vanessa – as well as a monochrome image of a pregnant woman.
The exclusion of the picture of the family of four from the French, German, Italian, South Korean, Turkish and Japanese adverts stands has raised questions from commentators and LGBT publications.
The move seems at odds with Apple’s record on LGBT rights. Apple chief executive Tim Cook is openly gay and has spoken out in favour of marriage equality and the company has publicly supported same-sex marriage.
Apple has yet to comment on the exclusions and has not replied to a request for comment from the Guardian.
It isn’t the first time parts of an advert have been tailored for certain markets. Apple removed tattoos from an Apple Watch advert in Japan, and other companies including Toyota have removed same-sex couples from their adverts in certain regions such as France, a nation which legalised same-sex marriage in 2013.
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