This week the first prosecutions were made against adverts considered sexist by the new ASA code on gender stereotyping. See which adverts were penalised in this press report from the Guardian
Responses to the guidelines include:
- the Fawcett society which feels that it doesnt go far enough
- and the IEA which feels the ASA has no right to get involved.
The original decision to implement the guidelines was based on an ASA research report.
It was based on this research report which showed the harm done by sexist stereotypes in advertising. The page has some very good resources including qualitative research which has examples of specific adverts.
AdReaction: Getting Gender Right – a report by Kantar in 2019 shows that while the ad industry believes both women and men are being depicted as positive role models, women in particular are portrayed in outdated ways. A telling quote is that ‘Almost all (99%) of UK ads for laundry products are targeted at women, while 70% of ads for toiletries and food products are aimed at women. However, in most UK households both genders are equally involved in decision-making in most categories; when it comes to groceries 93% of women and 87% of men consider themselves a ‘main buyer’. This over-simplistic targeting approach results in lost opportunities to connect meaningfully with consumers.’
For further information on this topic try UnStereotype Alliance Convened by UN Women. Unstereotype Alliance includes industry representatives but has a good collection of research reports.