OAKLAND (KPIX 5) – An article about Oakland in a magazine for Australia’s Qantas airlines features a shot of Lake Merritt, and a headline that’s making some residents cringe.
It reads, “Introducing Oakland: The Wild Side of San Francisco.”
Visit Oakland CEO Alison Best told KPIX 5 the headline was shown on a slide at a tourism conference in San Francisco last week.
“One of our team took a snapshot of the screen and posted that to her Facebook because she was so proud that Oakland had made this big panel presentation at the state conference,” Best recalled.
Online, some people mistook it for a Visit Oakland campaign.
“It has nothing to do with Visit Oakland or the City of Oakland,” Best said.
And the backlash began. Comments called the headline “insulting,” “horrible” and
Oakland City Councilmember Desley Brooks even weighed in, saying, “Oakland is magnificently Oakland…not in the shadow of anything…and not the comical ‘wild side.’ I didn’t and don’t approve.”
Visit Oakland has its own campaign that says it’s uniquely Oakland.
“How we talk about Oakland and promote Oakland, it’s important to all of us that that be a positive thing for all of our community,” Best said.