To promote their video call center for people with hearing impairment, Samsung Turkey came up with a publicity stunt; they spent a month giving sign language lessons to the residents of Bagcilar, Turkey, and placing video cameras around the planned route of an average young man with hearing impairment. You can see Muharrem’s reaction to the unexpected social interaction start with pleasant surprise, but become more and more bewildered as the day goes on. By the time a large video screen reveals the promotion to Muharrem, you can see he’s beginning to wonder if he’s somehow stepped into a parallel universe where everyone is capable of communicating with him.
Though this commercial has been lauded as “heartwarming” and “tearjerking”, it’s a shame that more people don’t learn a few basic words in sign language to cover very basic interactions with the many hearing-impaired people in the world. Here’s one reaction from the deaf community: