ST. JOHN'S, N.L. — The Newfoundland and Labrador government says vacation rental company Vrbo has apologized for an advertisement that prompted a call from the premier for it to be pulled.

A spokesperson for the provincial Tourism Department said in an email today that Vrbo's parent company, Expedia Group, contacted the province and promised to remove the ad from Canadian television.

The advertisement shows travellers horrified to find livestock running around their vacation rental as the traditional Newfoundland folk song "I'se the B'y" plays in the background.

Senator David Wells, who is from Newfoundland and Labrador, called the ad "condescending" and posted screenshots on social media this week of his own correspondence with an Expedia executive, who apologized.

The advertisement caused considerable uproar in the province after it aired during the Super Bowl: one local musician called it a "slur," and Premier Andrew Furey demanded in a social media post that the company "Do better!"

The Expedia Group did not respond to an email asking whether the ad would be shown on U.S. television.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 15, 2024.

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