“Women are not a snack”
I signed a justice-for-journalists petition on Change.org a month ago and occasionally receive emails asking me to sign others – demanding presidential pardons, saving barrier reefs, requesting the Vatican to allow a female pope. Then this one arrived in my inbox a few days ago: “Remove ad campaign: It’s easy to be a man.”
Apparently a television and billboard advertising campaign for Tecate did more than make people crave a can of watery wannabe beer. “Although a direct association between images that promote violence and violence against women hasn’t been proven, the campaign ‘It’s easy to be a man’ of Cerveceria Cuauhtemoc Moctezuma – that now belongs to Heineken International- is a striking example of the objectification of women for male consumption.”
The petitioners continue: “Women are not a snack in a buffet, we make up half of Mexico and the world.” As of today, the petition has 9,757 signatures and exerted enough pressure that the company has announced they will take down the most offensive in the series of ads (including the above). Maybe they should consider hiring a new advertising agency – the geniuses who came up with this campaign really didn’t get what all the fuss was about. Demeaning to women? Chauvinist? Bad taste? No no no, you’ve got it all wrong. All they wanted to do was “pay homage to the ability of the male sex to easily solve everyday conflicts without complications”, e.g. instead of trying to pick one out of three beautiful women, why not pile all three onto your plate, all-you-can-eat buffet-style? Wow, men who drink Tecate really are smart problem-solvers – no wonder they get all the hot girls.
But don’t despair Tecate, there is some good news for your brand – it was the lucky winner of the annual award for most misogynistic advertising presented by Las Publivíboras (loosely translated: The Spin Snakes), an NGO that speaks out about gender discrimination and sexism in advertising. Unfortunately, the Tecate ads almost look quaint and wholesome up against the billboards, magazine center spreads and TV commercials in this article about the sexual objectification of women in advertising. If aliens landed and used ads for fragrances, clothes, cars, beer, cosmetics – OK, most things you buy – as a field guide to our species, they could be forgiven for thinking the female anatomy begins at the breasts and ends at the upper thighs.
Animal Político, Tecate retira espectaculares de campaña Es fácil ser hombre (Apr 10)
Reporte Índigo, No es fácil ser Tecate (Apr 12)
Diario de Yucatán, Cerveza y sexismo (Apr 14)