Melania Trump Billboard in Croatia

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Melania Trump threatens to sue over questionable billboards

The billboards were simply misunderstood, according to the organization behind them.

 

Brianna Stone

Internet Culture

Published Sep 19, 2017

Billboards in Croatia featuring a photo of First Lady Melania Trump have been removed after she reportedly threatened to sue.

The billboards—adorned with the slogan “Just imagine how far you can go with a little bit of English”—were on display in Zagreb, the capital and largest city of Croatia, for a private language school, American Institute. The Guardian reports these billboards were part of a campaign for the people of Croatia to learn English and used Slovenian-born Mrs. Trump as an example of the benefits of learning the language. They also appeared online as Facebook ads.

After Mrs. Trump’s lawyer threatened a lawsuit, the billboards were taken down and the Croatian language school apologized.

“I’m satisfied with the fact that the school admitted that they violated the law and that they are ready to remove the billboards and (Facebook) ads,” Mrs. Trump’s Slovenian attorney, Nataša Pirc-Musar, said in a statement to the Associated Press. “We are stillanalyzingg possible further legal steps.”

Ivis Buric, a spokeswoman for the American Institute, said, “We are very sorry that the billboards were misunderstood as something intended to mock the U.S. first lady. It was meant to be something positive, to show her as a role model.”

Buric also said the campaign turned out to be very successful because of the local and national attention it received. She said the school intends to have new billboards, without Trump’s image.

Trump’s Slovenian lawyer, Nataša Pirc-Musar, told the Associated Press, “I’m satisfied with the fact that the school admitted that they violated the law and that they are ready to remove the billboards and [Facebook] ads. We are still analyzing possible future legal steps.”

According to the Guardian, the first lady hired her lawyer to protect her image, which has appeared without her permission on multiple products in Slovenia.

The American Institute was founded in 2010 with the goal of bringing the American education system to Croatia. The school promotes English, American culture and American higher education.

H/T: the Guardian

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*First Published: Sep 19, 2017, 4:54 pm CDT