Posts Tagged Advertising

23 flavors of sexism

Writing about bullshit sexist advertising on a feminist blog can be tricky.

On the one hand, bullshit sexism makes me mad. So I want to condemn it,  shame it, and deconstruct it to take away whatever power it might have developed in the course of its million-dollar-ad-campaign life.

On the other hand, we’ve all heard the saying “Any publicity is good publicity.” How can you call out a bullshit advertisement for its negative qualities without inadvertently contributing to the product’s visibility, and thus the success of the ad campaign?

I think I have come up with the perfect solution to this heretofore unsolvable feminist blogger’s quandary.

Writing about bullshit sexist advertising on a feminist blog can be tricky.

On the one hand, bullshit sexism makes me mad. So I want to condemn it,  shame it, and deconstruct it to take away whatever power it ...

Reebok backs that ass [claim] up

Imagine you are a Reebok ad executive facing flat sales and an even flatter image problem. Do you:

a) design an ad campaign based on the product you were given and its proven benefits

b) quit your job because it’s too hard

c) spend the whole day watching episodes of Mad Men on Netflix Instant to channel inspiration

d) based on little to no scientific evidence, claim that EasyTone footwear will measurably strengthen the muscles in the legs, thighs and buttocks, and then design a sexist and objectifying ad campaign based on this faulty claim that promises the shoes will, among other things, “make your boobs jealous of your ass”??

If you chose d), congratulations! You did the same thing as ...

Imagine you are a Reebok ad executive facing flat sales and an even flatter image problem. Do you:

a) design an ad campaign based on the product you were given and its proven benefits

b) quit your ...

Transphobic ad campaign puts gender anxiety on full display

A really disturbing and transphobic advertisement showed up in Canada’s National Post the other day, pictured above. I won’t link to their website because they don’t deserve the traffic, but suffice to say it has “stop corrupting children” in the title. Because as we all know, trans folk, gender non-conforming people and allies are all viscous baby-haters who hope to corrupt children with their message of “love yourself for who you are” and “express yourself freely” and “you don’t have to be something you’re not”. Scaaaaarryyyy .

The paper has since apologized, stating that it did not follow its own “procedures in place for vetting the content of advertising, especially advocacy advertising…intended to ensure that such ads meet ...

A really disturbing and transphobic advertisement showed up in Canada’s National Post the other day, pictured above. I won’t link to their website because they don’t deserve the traffic, but suffice to say it has “stop ...

Quick hit: NOW NYC’s new tumblr targets offensive advertising

Sometimes when I’m walking down the street or waiting on the subway platform, I see an ad that makes me want to whip out a marker and scrawl “This insults women” or “Sexism sells!” all over it. Then I remember that graffiti is a crime and that defacing public spaces isn’t a good idea.

Luckily, NOW NYC has started a new tumblr called “That’s Not Cool,” which is meeting all my graffiti wish-fulfillment needs. And you can join in the fun by submitting your own picture of an ad that’s sexist, racist, homophobic or otherwise not cool. The result looks a little something like this.


And you should go ahead and submit – it shouldn’t be ...

Sometimes when I’m walking down the street or waiting on the subway platform, I see an ad that makes me want to whip out a marker and scrawl “This insults women” or “Sexism sells!” all over it. ...

Restore your fragile masculinity with deep fried factory farmed chicken!

This spectacularly subtle ad is currently airing on Australian TV, reminding men that their masculine identities are so fragile that they can be destroyed by one single sweater, and so insubstantial that they can be restored with a bucket of chicken.

Yeah! Dudes! Manly dudes in t-shirts! Dudes eating fried chicken! Dudes denigrating vaguely feminine things, and each other! Dudes being portrayed as so deeply insecure that they can’t handle wearing a pink sweater without freaking the fuck out! Dudes, how are you not insulted by this shit?
Transcript below the jump.

This spectacularly subtle ad is currently airing on Australian TV, reminding men that their masculine identities are so fragile that they can be destroyed by one single sweater, and so insubstantial that they can be restored with ...

Domestic violence: still not chic, artistic or cutting edge

The image pictured above is an ad for a hair salon.

It depicts a woman with a black eye sitting on a couch in a dress with her hair done up, and her apparent abuser standing behind her, holding out a piece of jewelry (presumably to make up for inflicting the black eye).

The implication of this ad is that, as a woman, your desire to be beautiful should extend to any situation, even when you’re being beaten by your partner.

It’s tired, offensive, and disgusting, and it’s rightly inspired a number of people to speak out (see comments here).

When I come across such glibly sexist and unambiguously violence-apologist media, I’m often left with frustration that my feeling of rage ...

The image pictured above is an ad for a hair salon.

It depicts a woman with a black eye sitting on a couch in a dress with her hair done up, and her apparent abuser standing ...

New ad for “Cosmo for Guys” lets you get inside a girl’s head

Some ads, such as the Summer’s Eve videos we covered recently, seem doomed to be sexist and terrible because the product they’re selling is. This new video promoting an iPad-only “Cosmo for Guys” magazine that promises to let (straight) men know “what women want” is like that.

As bad as this ad is, I’m sure the product will be even worse. In case the idea wasn’t painfully clear, the video’s director explained: “The concept and analogy here is to show a guy ‘getting inside a girl’s head’ and sort of ‘reading her mind’ by flipping through the magazine pages on the iPad. The reason for that is: it is the first magazine for men that is written by ...

Some ads, such as the Summer’s Eve videos we covered recently, seem doomed to be sexist and terrible because the product they’re selling is. This new video promoting an iPad-only “Cosmo for Guys” magazine that ...

“This ad really spoke to me, in that it featured a talking vagina”

Last night, Stephen Colbert took on the racist and douchey (literally!) Summer’s Eve commercials that we wrote about last week. It is, predictably, five minutes and forty-six seconds of pure gold.

To quote Colbert, what you are about to see, you cannot un-see. And you will probably want to re-see it multiple times, because it is that good.

Last night, Stephen Colbert took on the racist and douchey (literally!) Summer’s Eve commercials that we wrote about last week. It is, predictably, five minutes and forty-six seconds of pure gold.

To quote Colbert, what ...

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