What do we think of this then? Yesterday everyone seemed to be reacting to these ads, either in their trousers or on the phone to the advertising watchdog who received a large number of complaints about the ads. Even the IRFU sent the food company which own Hunky Dorys a solicitor’s letter demanding the campaign be pulled because of a reference to the crisps as a “proud sponsor of Irish rugby”. The campaign has been branded depressing, base, sexist, tasteless and exploitative among other things; but I believe the aspect of this which intelligent people find most frustrating is the amount of publicity the campaign has gotten in it’s first 72 hours.
Raymond Coyle, chief executive of Largo Foods who are responsible for the ads doesn’t see the problem,“I don’t think the ads are at all sexist but if people do think that then I apologise to them,” he said (rubbing his hands together with glee at the attention the campaign is getting). “Everything is so serious and gloomy now and we want to inject a little bit of fun into things.”
Are the ads exploitative? Yes. Are men often exploited in ads too? Yes. Would I prefer if this type of advertising didn’t exist? Definitely. However, the most irritating aspect of this is the thousands and thousands of euro worth of free advertising the company have gotten because they chose to be offensive.
My main problem with the campaigns is that Ireland women are a fantastic rugby team, and a real force in European rugby. This year was one of their best at the 6 Nations, and the Women’s Rugby World Cup takes place in August and September of this year.
I write for http://www.womens-rugby.com, and that’s the only place I’ve seen coverage of women’s rugby; on specialist website.
Now, thanks to Hunky Dory, the only image the general public will see of women playing rugby is scantily clad attractive women, quite clearly only trying to draw male attention to themselves.
So we can take that option, or the “women rugby players are all big fat dykes” one. As a rugby player, I don’t like either option.
It’s not Hunky Dory’s fault that these are likely the only images the public will see of women playing rugby ahead of the World Cup, the IRFU has also failed to fully publicise it, but I do find these ads more offensive as a rugby player than as a woman.
That’s a really good point Ciara. I thought about that this morning, about how amazing it would be if Hunky Dory had featured the real Irish Women’s Rugby Team. I mean, the women in the ads are obviously not even Irish – we’re beautiful but we don’t usually look like that! It is the idea that women are just for looking at and that if we’re going to do something MAD like play rugby we’ll be doing it in our underwear.
ha ha!I’ve seen 2 other 1s!they were like this-the girls were in a scrum and it said”SCRUMPTIOS!” and-there was a girl running with the ball while being chased and it says “TACKLE THESE!”