Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue Photo Shoot: Racy or Racist?

Tanya Rivero
ABC News

With a hot cover photo of model Kate Upton on this year's Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, the magazine created a big buzz about photo shoots on all seven continents.

But this year, beautiful models in barely there bikinis are in the middle of a controversy brewing over some photos and video the magazine posted online that did not make it into the magazine - particularly photos taken in Africa and China.

PHOTOS: Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issues

Some people are calling them insensitive.

"For me, the African picture was probably the most offensive because it played on some of the most old and stereotypical images, it showed the African as primitive as almost uncivilized," said Marc Lamont Hill, a professor at Columbia University.