Some advertising moves just scream “BAD IDEA”, even to people (me) whose only experience with the industry comes from watching Mad Men. This week’s ad controversy stems from a New Zealand commercial from Libra Tampons that’s being lambasted for being transphobic. Check out the ad after the jump.
In the commercial, a blonde woman and a drag queen grow increasingly competitive with their bathroom beauty regimens, until the former “wins” because she can use a tampon. Unsurprisingly, there’s been a wave of backlash at this implication from the trans community and beyond. Cherise Witehira, president of Agender New Zealand, called the commercial “extremely offensive,” stating that, “it’s pretty much saying the only way you can be a woman is to get your period. Obviously we can’t menstruate. However, we identify as female.” [via ONTD]
In a finally-intelligent (but perhaps too late) move, Libra has issued an apology for the ad and removed it. They claimed no offense was meant by the commercial, and that “Independent research was undertaken and the advertisement was viewed positively during that testing.” I just want to know who in tarnation was in that test group? [via Jezebel]
“When in doubt, don’t” is a pretty solid mantra of mine, but clearly that isn’t the case for Libra. I can’t imagine everyone in production thought this was a good idea, but somehow it managed to get the green light. Hopefully the uproar about it will at least draw some positive attention to the trans community.
What do you think of the commercial?