To promote sales for 'Healthy Choice: Asian Inspired Cafe Steamers,' ConAgra foods created the website 'Lonely Fortune Writer.' Unfortunately for ConAgra, their new interactive site is considered insulting by a number of Asian-Americans.
The ‘Lonely Fortune Writer’ features an Asian man who is bummed out because the sale of fortune cookies has gone down. To make him happy, you can have him write a fortune for you or a friend.
One reason the ‘Lonely Fortune Writer’ has people upset is that fortune cookies aren’t an ‘Asian inspiration’ but rather an American one. They feel if a company is going to claim that something is inspired by a culture, then make sure you use something from said culture.
I can see their point. Fortune cookies first came about in California and are thought to have been created by an Asian immigrant. When sold in China (first introduced in the 1990s) they were marketed as ”Genuine American Fortune Cookies.”