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LGBT Portrayals in Advertising

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Anna Bellegante

on 2 May 2013

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Transcript of LGBT Portrayals in Advertising

Theory Fabric of Oppression Thesis But today, advertisers are slowly breaking their way into the LGBT community. Just last year, adult LGBT consumers spent $790 billion. The U.S. adult LGBT population is estimated at 16 million, with some estimates ranking all the way up to 25 million (Huffington Post).

This is a market that some companies definitely want to acknowledge. Kindle Ad Companies have tried to market to the LGBT community in the past, but have met resistance (and still do, as shown by the JCPenney example.) When Ikea posted a television ad featuring a gay couple shopping for a dining room table in 1994, the company received bomb threats. Ikea Ad The Ikea ad was pulled after just two showings--one in New York and the other in Washington D.C. On a side note, CoverGirl uses Ellen as a spokeswoman in addition to JCPenney. LGBT in Advertising Carrie Bell, Annamarie Bellegante & Morgan Berthusen When you see an advertisement, it is typical to see men and women, boys and girls, mothers and fathers …representing love, passion, and even arguing as well as ads for engagement rings, furniture, fashion, food, cars. It is very rare to see portrayals of a man and another man or two women who appear to be in a relationship. As of April 2013, eleven countries (Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, South Africa, Sweden) and several sub-national jurisdictions (parts of Brazil, Mexico, and the United States), allow same-sex couples to marry. The United States has seen strong reactions in regards to the issue of same-sex marriage. This is a reason that many companies have been resistant to use same sex couples in their advertisements. It takes a brave company to break the mold... Some companies have started to use same sex couples in advertisements. This has not occurred without backlash. After JCPenney's announced that they would use Ellen DeGeneres as a spokesperson One Million Moms released the following statement. "Funny that JC Penney thinks hiring an open homosexual spokesperson will help their business when most of their customers are traditional families. DeGeneres is not a true representation of the type of families that shop at their store. The majority of JC Penney shoppers will be offended and choose to no longer shop there. The small percentage of customers they are attempting to satisfy will not offset their loss in sales." Following this statement, One Million Moms called for a boycott of JCPenney stores if Ellen continued to act as spokeswoman. However, JCPenney stood behind their choice. LGBT lack representation in Advertising http://static8.businessinsider.com/image/4f301c1f6bb3f7194c000018-371-371/ellen-degeneres.jpg http://micahjesse.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/ellen_covergirl_olay_08.gif www.youtube.com/watch?v=G47ol0zYXgk www.youtube.com/ watch?v=wY1UIES9wx8 http://www.blogcdn.com/green.autoblog.com/media/2012/06/chevy-volt-gay-ad-628.jpg http://worldofpopculture.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/oreo1-475x416.jpg http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-OHMCXQGXtk0/UCwEPsrfyoI/AAAAAAAAAj0/3Mg_Nd-Blu4/s1600/target+wedding.jpg http://johngress.com/wp-content/uploads//2011/06/2011GLBT_LesbianCoorsLight2-600x797.jpg References http://jrobe108.wordpress.com/2011/03/21/the-lack-of-homosexuality-in-ads/
http://www.you ube.com/watch?v=01Ic70c3mHc
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Media_portrayal_of_lesbianism http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/06/gay-themed-ads-mainstream-_n_2821745.html Our presentation will be
operating within the Fabric of Oppression theory. As stated earlier in class, this theory explains that those groups at the top of the igloo hold more social power in society than those associated with the bottom half of the igloo. Our presentation looks specifically at sexual orientation and how heterosexuals are prioritized in advertising over those who do not identify as heterosexual. http://ari-adnos.blogspot.com/2009/09/fabric-of-oppression.html We will show how television and print advertising tend to support the fabric of oppression by catering to a predominately heterosexual population. Many portrayals of the LGBT community in advertising tend to be negative. Recently, however, companies have been attempting to broaden their target audiences by positively portraying the LGBT community. Even though companies are starting to create more inclusive advertising, there are still negative advertisements being created to humor heterosexual customers. For example, Snickers came out with a Super Bowl ad in 2007 that consisted of two men kissing while eating a Snickers. This ad created a lot of back-lash and was eventually banned. Another example of a negative portrayal of the LGBT community is a recent IKEA advertisement. This one is a little more subtle, but still caters to stereotypes. As previously stated, it takes a brave company to break the traditional advertising molds. However, as we go into the advertising fields, we will help create that bravery and make sure everyone's voice is heard and fairly represented. Advertisers, such as Skyy Blue Vodka and Calvin Klein, commonly use the “hot lesbian” stereotype in their advertisements in order to appeal to heterosexual males. These ads are never about furthering rights, identity, or equality. Academic scholar Diamond (2005) says advertising has turned lesbianism into a commodity: “Media representations signal a new appreciation and celebration of women’s sexual freedom and diversity. On the other hand this is not necessarily the case by portraying it as a fashionable ‘add on’ to otherwise conventional heterosexuality” (p. 105). (Quote and citation used from Wikipedia) responsiblemen.wordpress.com fkhan3.wordpress.com Axe Ad www.adrants.com
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