Recently, you asked: should advertising be more sensitive to women
(Campaign, 25 April)? Obviously not, if the thrust of recent stories are
to be believed (a joke for the lads there). In fact, Campaign had
already made up its mind when it ’boldly’ voted that sexist piece of
trash advertising for Gossard as ’Pick of the Week’. What on earth makes
you think this is bold when male opinion and behaviour appears to be
based on the Loaded/GQ mentality? You are merely pandering to the
consensus view. It is obviously hip to pretend ads of this ilk are
inoffensive and funny - anyone who objects is accused of that age-old
cliche: prudishness (this is on a par with women being accused of
nagging when they ask a bloke to do something he can’t be bothered to
do); ie, it is designed to insult and make us feel out of touch and
thereby silence us.
It is interesting that you quote two leading male industry figures in
your article - probably because female ones are so rare. In the
aforementioned article, Sammy Harari is quoted as saying that women
should not be stereotyped or degraded - excuse me, wasn’t this the same
guy who depicted a woman on a lead for Harvey Nichols? And, he says, it
is important to have a sense of humour over the use of female images. Am
I the only one whose wit fails at the sight of women depicted as gagging
for it, getting their specs off and tits out for the lads, and being
treated like shit while their bloke gets his rocks off over a computer
game or a car? Gosh, I’m oh-so-glad I have Mark Roalfe fighting my
corner and making sure I’m not patronised - I mean, he did the Lil-lets
ad so he’s obviously a sensitive chap.
And, speaking of advertising gaffes, what about editorial ones? In that
same issue, Campaign Diary contained an item about the Tatton election.
When you have finished laughing at this hilarious piece, spare a thought
for the 21-year-old about to start her first job in an industry where it
has already been suggested she might be ’top totty’.
While those post-feminist ’laddish’ women roll in the aisles with their
new-found sense of humour, I give praise that I am prudish enough to
remember how hard-won their freedom to behave like this has been, and to
recognise how utterly sexist this industry is.
Send your rants (around 400 words, please) to Diary Editor, Campaign,
174 Hammersmith Road, London W6 7JP.