Thursday, 27 August 2015

Smarting about sexist ads.

Yesterday the Twitter user @God_loves_women posted an ad campaign she thought was by Essex County Council. These are the 2 pictures that made a lot of us angry...

It had to be pointed out immediately to a number of trolls just why these ads are sexist and why it is a problem. So... I apologise for stating the bloody obvious..... the ads tell a man that he is "smart" for disposing of litter. In turn they tell a woman that she is "pretty"... because those are the terms appropriate for each gender. Smart men, pretty women. These tired gender stereotypes belong to the 1950s and should be returned there promptly.

The campaign was part of "Love Essex" and initially women targeted Essex County Council to lodge objections. They were very quick to point those women elsewhere.... "It's not us it's THEM!"

"THEM" turned out to be Braintree District Council. They were quick to DM me and ask for an email address. They said they would respond promptly. They did. They shouldn't have bothered. Here it is....

So..... Keep Britain Tidy niftily identified that men who want to be smart and women who want to be pretty are the groups most likely to drop litter. Yes, I agree this is sounding more and more screwed as we go on. I was super buzzed at being told how awful litter is too. That was obviously all that needed explaining to me. Litter is really really bad, so if we demean and disempower women to make it stop happening .... well..... still no litter so "winning". *Smiley face*. There wasn't a smiley face but I imagined it in my head since the response was so overwhelmingly wank.

I told them so. (I didn't say 'wank' ...I said "flimsy" but I thought wank with all my heart.) They didn't reply back.

So who is responsible? Who wants to own up to this bag of shite and get it off the streets?

You cannot .. in 2015... put up ads which suggest that women's function and main desire is to be "pretty".  I was told it was "just words". Bullshit. It is a deliberate choice of word and it is in bold next to a woman in a short dress twirling her hair .... (classic flirtation move is implied....).. she is in full make-up and she is in a fairly demure pose. The man by contrast is in a suit... he is in a much stronger pose with his legs in a wide stance... he looks strong and confident. The woman meanwhile looks..... gentle and pretty. This is clear stereotyping and it is paid for by public funds.

Some ad company commissioned by Braintree Council decided that despite any diversity policy the council may or may not have the way to go was with images and a message which demeans half of their constituency.

If I was Braintree Council... I'd get those adverts down and pass the buck back to the Ad company. We believe it is RP2 global based in Essex. There's a lot of twitching going on amongst this shower of sexist blame-avoiders.

Essex County Council cabinet looks like this by the way.... 1 woman ... 9 men.

The two Cabinet members for Braintree with portfolios for 'Environment and Place' are here..... you may note their political background....

Infact .... the Tories... with their huge concern for Women and Equality *spits to one side* feature quite heavily in this whole stupid mess. As do men. Here are the key directors at RP2 Global.... men of course... If you scratch the surface of anything that is bad for women... you might find men or Tories or a heavy combination of both.

Sort it the fuck out. It is rubbish.