In a world rife with trouble and disunity, where so many people do without the basic necessities of life, while others suffer for their lifestyle or beliefs, it’s a comfort to know that we can count on the United Nations to tackle the real problems plaguing our planet.
No, they’re not working on a plan to fight ISIS or anything related to the environment, the unborn, or human rights. Nope, the UN has just announced a new initiative to target that most pernicious of problems: stereotypes of men and women in advertising.
The UN’s Unstereotype Alliance is aimed at steering the advertising world toward “realistic, non-biased portrayals of women and men.” (Whatever that means.) It’s worth nothing that, even though the stated purpose talks about “women and men,” it’s clear that the bulk of the efforts will focus on women, based on some of the quotes in the press release.
Speaking ahead of the Unstereotype Alliance event, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women says: “Stereotypes reflect deep-rooted ideas of femininity and masculinity. Negative, diminished conceptions of women and girls are one of the greatest barriers for gender equality and we need to tackle and change those images wherever they appear. Advertising is a particularly powerful driver to change perceptions and impact social norms. UN Women is excited to partner with the foremost industry shapers in this Alliance to challenge and advance the ways women are represented in this field.”
One corporate communications executive notes some statistic that, “progressive ads have been found to be 25% more effective and deliver better branded impact.” Uh-huh. We can only guess what kinds of agendas will go along with “progressive ads.”
Over at The Daily Wire, Amanda Prestigiacomo puts in perspective when she says:
[T]he U.N. might not be on top of its game when it comes to fighting for the rights of all Muslim women, or for the right to life of the unborn, the most vulnerable and voiceless among us, or fighting anti-Semitism, but you can bet they’ll be doing everything in their power to rid the world of depicted stay-at-home mothers bringing dad dinner and those bikini-clad chicks eating burgers on the hood of a car.
If they can get rid of the dumb husband cliche in commercials, they’ll really accomplish something. But I’m not going to hold my breath.