Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Halifax mall accused of belittling women's academic achievements

There's a bit of a controversy blowing up on Twitter right now over Halifax's Mic Mac Mall and the way they advertise back-to-school shopping.

The slide above still appears on the mall web site, but the two below have apparently been removed:

According to the Mall's Twitter feed, "The campaign's intent was to correlate school subjects to shopping & our strong social media presence in a humorous & light hearted manner."

But some customers felt differently:

So what's the problem here? Teens hate school, and girls love shopping, right?

But there's a bigger thing going on here, and it has to do with the cliché of girls not being academic achievers. 

Here is a recent example from The Children's Place:

This one's from 2011:

You can trace the growing controversy all the way back to the "Math class is tough" talking Barbie fiasco of 1992. That one became the basis of a Simpson's episode. And yet product designers and marketers continue to lazily promote this stereotype because they are unaware it is both stale and offensive to a growing customer base.

Perhaps it's time for some new material, eh?

Thanks to Andy for the tip.

1 comment:

  1. How absolutely dreadful. Don't these people realize it's 2013?