Monday, May 23, 2011

Don't you just love it when... google your name and find an article written about you?

I don't actually do this often, I was trying to sign in to my google account, and I started typing my name into the search engine by mistake- then my curiosity got the better of me!

Friday, May 20, 2011

"Please stop the world, I'd like to get off!"

I am about to have a huge whinge about the Advertising Standards Board (again). If you are tired of hearing these long-winded rants, please walk away now. (Dave, this includes you.)

Have you ever wanted to clench your fists and cry out, "GAHHHHH!" because the whole world has gone crazy (except for, of course, you)?

I cannot fathom the thinking or the motivation of the ASB. By now, it has become clear that the current system of self-regulation is absolutely useless, you would think if anything that now they would want to give the impression of functioning effectively and actually uphold some legitimate complaints. Nope, not at all. In fact, despite occasionally reaching the correct answer, when the Advertiser doesn't like the answer- that their ad campaign was a violation- the ASB reviews their decision and decides despite the fact that they originally agreed the ad was inappropriate, that it's actually okay now.

This particular case is of Rivers catalogue, with the heading "10 Deadly Deals", with a picture of a woman's legs coming out from under the couch. She is wearing fishnet stockings and stiletto heels. The highlight of the ASB report where they reversed their original decision was where they actually suggested the woman under the couch might be "searching for a lost wedding ring". Maybe the campaign should have been named something other than "10 Deadly Deals" if we weren't supposed to interpret the woman as dead...and being that Rivers sell clothing, and not couches and not women....what exactly was the correct interpretation here?

Another recent case, for Supre 'jeggings' (now there's a crime right there). These ads are of a topless young model wearing jeggings. Her hair is covering her breasts. Of course, these ads are displayed in the appropriate venue you would expect- the backs of buses. The ASB dismissed complaints for this ad, saying that a topless woman draws more attention to the jeans that are for sale. Funny, I thought when there was a topless woman around, attention was elsewhere.

Supre's response was that this ad was aimed at girls aged 18 plus. Because we all know only over 18's go outside without blindfolds on.

So you can see, my levels of grumpiness to those who are failing to properly regulate advertising in the public arena are slightly elevated.

Then, on top of that, THIS.


I personally have no interest in Sexpo. I know there are adults who do. And if they are adults, then that is their call and nothing to do with me. Sexpo is R rated, for adults over 18 only. However, their advertising is once again, aimed at the general public.

I am aware of at least one Sexpo billboard that is up in North Perth, including a picture of a famous porn star, whose accomplishments include four awards for anal sex, I have since learned. I, along with others, have lodged a complaint with the ASB about this billboard, for all to see, not just the adults over 18 who might be interested in attending.

Of course, I can be sure that the ASB will take their sweet time responding to complaints, and they will get around to it sometime after Sexpo has come and gone. Maybe they will even say it needs to come down. But the advertiser will be ready to take it down anyway by then, the event is over. And the moral of the story is: Advertisers, do whatever you want, and put up whatever you want- because there are no repercussions at all, and the more offensive, the more everyone will take notice.

But my issue with Sexpo in the public sphere goes way past billboards.

Sexpo is planning a public demonstration to take place in the City, in the middle of the day, where they will see how many people they can fit in a bed with this accomplished porn star I previously mentioned, as well as various Penthouse Pets and pole dancers. In the workplace, displaying pornographic images or pin-ups is sexual harassment. But for all the office workers in Perth, once they have stepped out of the office for lunch- no protection anymore!

Can someone tell me how there are sexual harassment laws in the workplace, but not outside the office door? Why at work, a woman can strive for equality, to be taken seriously as someone who has something to contribute- but outside, be put back in her place, where it is now appropriate for others to ogle and make suggestive comments?

Or perhaps someone can explain how it is that Facebook deleted pictures of 'porn t-shirts' because they contained pornographic content, thus violating the terms of use, when facebook users must be at least thirteen- when anyone, even my small children, can walk down the street and see someone wearing the identical shirt?


Saturday, May 14, 2011

What exactly is the "sexualisation of children"?

I read a great blog post about the sexualisation of children. It was written by Julie Gale, founder of Kids Free 2B Kids. You can read it here.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Advertising + sexual imagery + children = FAIL.

A bit of a hot topic at the moment (for me, at least!) is about Outdoor Advertising in Australia, and whether or not the current system of self-regulation is effective. Child experts have referred to research, demonstrating that exposure to sexual material and advertising is harmful to children.

I could go on and on about the failure that is the Advertising Standards Bureau. Really, I could. And I thought about it. But then I remembered a youtube video I saw of Julie Gale, director of Kids Free 2B Kids. Not only does she make all the points I could potentially make, but she is hilarious!

Check it out here. (There are two parts).

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