No sense of humor.
July 19, 2000 12:33 PM   Subscribe

No sense of humor. Advertisers are saying women don't "get" funny ads.
posted by owillis (13 comments total)
I find most of the commercials mentioned completely stupid and I'm a guy. I guess my problem is I don't find stupid 'guy' stuff very interesting. Yeah advertisers, guys are a bunch of immature dolts, teehee! I get it already!Your not going to get my $$$ by insulting my intelligence.It's not that I don't have a sense of humor, it's just that I'm not like you.
posted by Mr. skullhead at 2:38 PM on July 19, 2000

They must be talking to the wrong women. Then again, I don't buy the household products in our house either. I do find most of those "guy" ads funny. I don't really like the Whassup ads mainly because this one guy at work keeps on saying it, but that's an exception.
posted by Electric Elf at 2:42 PM on July 19, 2000

Whoa. Looks like Mr. skullhead forgot to close them italics and it carried on all the way to the next post.

As for the commercials: although I do find some commercials funny and some dumb, I try not to judge a product based on how funny/dumb it's commercial was. That's just me, though.
posted by deckard at 3:17 PM on July 19, 2000

Electric Elf: Be thankful there's only ONE guy at work saying it. It's infested my entire office for months now, and there's no amount of profanities that will make them stop.

Of course, I think they're just doing it to spite me now... :-)
posted by cCranium at 3:23 PM on July 19, 2000

You know, I consider it sort of a relief that I have yet to actually *see* that damned Budweiser ad everyone keeps referring to... they obviously don't consider me a potential customer. :-)

posted by Mars Saxman at 4:22 PM on July 19, 2000

I think it's unfair how they look at a sample of advertising targeted at women as seen on Lifetime - I mean, really. Lifetime, "Television for Women", is not television for all women - it's television for wussy dippy-la-la women, or at least it is if a woman can sit through that "Lifetime. Television... for women" bit during ad-breaks and actually continue to watch the channel without feeling utterly insulted.

(I am a woman, by the way, and I can honestly say that a) I hate Lifetime, b) I hate Lifetime telemovies, c) I have a sense of humour and d) I love the funny ads. I'm all about the laughs, baby.)

Of course there's gender lines in humour, but not to the point where advertising has to take completely different roads to appeal to either men or women. Most people are right in the middle and would just appreciate something funny and honest. You're not going to get my consumer dollar by pandering to me because I have ovaries.

And speaking of "pandering", if you'll excuse the pun, (and in what is probably a poor example of my sense of humour) the funniest ad I've seen in the last couple of months is a Snickers ad with a guy and a copy of "Panda Fancy" magazine talking in a cartoony voice about how much he and the panda would like to go to lunch whilst his co-workers cower in the next room. I'd probably buy Snickers based on that ad but I'm more of a Mars bar kind of girl.
posted by sammy at 5:57 PM on July 19, 2000

Mars: didn't you watch the superbowl?If not then I can see why you haven't spotted it. I don't think they've even shown it apart from that one event. They've had clips of it on the news (yes, our media decided that four guys in a beer commercial is an important event worthy of the news) and I've heard of some alterations of it (Wasabi?) but other than that the only time I saw it was when the Rams won the big game (Go St. Louis! [yes, I actually live in St. Louis {pardon my parenthesis}])
posted by deckard at 8:04 PM on July 19, 2000

I think more women find these "guy ads" funny than is reflected in the stats. Most women just do not admit to it. I agree with whole heartedly with sammy's post, Lifetime stinks. I like football, my husband hates it. What can I say, oppisites attract.
posted by bjgeiger at 8:11 PM on July 19, 2000

deckard: if you watched any NFL/ESPN sporting event you would have seen "Wasssup?" a billion times. And damn conventional wisdom, I still like it.
posted by owillis at 12:13 AM on July 20, 2000

From the article:

Theory 3: In fact, women love humor. It's the men who just don't get it. Since men control the ad business, advertising reflects male agendas and misguided ideas about what women like and want. Prejudices such as: Women don't have a sense of humor.

And the crowd goes wild!

Just about every example they cite as a "funny" ad, was/isn't. At least, not to anybody other than an Ivy frat boy. Which is fine, as long as you're selling to other frat boys...

Then again, we have no real clue that advertising works at all, so go figure...

posted by aurelian at 2:31 AM on July 20, 2000

I'm with Sammy! During the Miller Lite "Dick" campaign, I actually bought a sixer of that swill just because I knew the agency would probably get fired over those, and I wanted to do my part to support them. Anyone know where I can find those on the internet?

What if they used humor to push drugs (paxil etc.) instead of all that dreamy Lifetime-esque stuff? THAT I would like to see.
posted by mimi at 8:13 AM on July 20, 2000

Well of course the statement that women have no sense of humour is just nuts (do we REALLY have to debate that one folks, sheesh!), but I think the issue goes a little deeper: I admit that many of the advertisements targeted at women are somewhat solemn, but I don't believe this is a direct indication that women themselves have no sense of humour. For years, the advertising industry has encouraged a sexist, conservative view of the female sex which has fostered an attitude that if they don't sterilise their bathrooms from floor to ceiling, they are bad mothers. If they don't buy brand X of pain relievers, they are putting their family at risk. In my opinion, the advertising industry itself (yes, those who are actually making this claim) is partly responsible for the almost hysterical paranoia which causes some women to take everything so seriously when considering which products to buy. If I were a feminist, advertising would be the first place I'd lobby against.
posted by claire at 9:23 AM on July 20, 2000

I agree, but it extends to everyone. The advertisers are selling these sexual stereotypes in easily disgestable humor bites. The more that people that buy into these ideas, the easier it will be to continue to pump out products that perpetuate them.

Men should flaunt their innate brutal stupidity and strength, buy beer and rogaine.

Women should protect their families while still looking good, buy Minivans and Makeup.

There is a huge gap between how much we are buying due to want and much much we are buying due to need. Advertising thrives on building up the 'want' side.
posted by john at 11:39 AM on July 20, 2000

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