Overcoming Gender-Based Toy Marketing One Advertisement At A Time

Many kids grow up thinking that pink is for girls and blue is for boys, as the picture below shows. Dolls, princesses, and beauty related toys are typically marketed to girls, whereas building sets, cars, and action figures are mostly advertised to boys. However, such stereotypical marketing can have negative effects, providing children with narrow views of what it means to be a girl or a boy. Brands and marketers have received much criticism in the past few years for perpetuating these traditional constructions of gender, however, others are slowly seeking to change this problem. One of our Youth Advisory Board members, Julia Tanenbaum, weighs in on this subject, highlighting areas of frustration and where progress is being made. 

Overcoming Gender-Based Toy Marketing One Advertisement At A Time

Pink and Blue ToysDespite conventional wisdom that today’s children can pursue whatever career or lifestyle they please without their gender impairing their ability to succeed, the toys we raise them with send a completely different message. This year has given us toys like Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood “award” nominated LEGO Friends Butterfly Beauty Shop, which shows girls that they can only learn engineering principles when their materials are pink beauty supplies and they can “get primped and pretty” instead of, say, building. Although LEGO has received much attention for its offensive gender marketing, children are constantly bombarded with toys espousing equally damaging messages. Bratz dolls and Barbies teach girls to focus on their appearance and aspire to be stick thin, while Nerf guns and military themed toys inspire boys to be violent and active, with little scope for nurturing or creativity. These toys and their limiting messages are bad enough in themselves, but they are just part of…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “Most already-made Halloween costumes only have sexy options. Sexy Cat, Sexy Pirate. It gets old, and I don't like dressing up that way.” –Female, 18, CA

Is the bridal shower dead? Not quite, but many brides today (Millennials) have no interest in the traditional trappings of the event, and increasingly are opting to skip it altogether. Some don’t want to burden their friends with more costs, and others find that the bachelorette party is more than sufficient for female bonding. But one other major reason: they just don’t need them anymore. There's been close to a 900% rise in cohabitation before marriage over the last 50 years, which means couples have all the toasters and sheets they need. (Racked)

Math students have a new magic-like tool to solve problems. PhotoMath is an app that solves simple math equations, and “provides step-by-step instructions explaining how it got the answer.” Users simply take a picture of the equation, and text recognition technology can solve anything from fractions to linear equations. Of course, concern that the app will be used more for cheating than learning is a pretty big concern. (Mashable)

What is college life like for Millennials? One way to find out is to look at their own pictures documenting it all. The “Instagram generation” is on campus: over 37% of college age adults are on the app, and they’re snapping shots of their experiences from the classroom to the dorm room. This self-recorded gallery is a window into the lives of today’s students, their selfies, dance parties, and makeshift indoor slip-and-slides. (NYMag)

When FXX aired a marathon of The Simpsons this September, they shattered ratings records with the 18-49-year-old audience. Now the channel has released Simpsons World, a streaming app dedicated to the show, which includes lots of features beyond access to the entire Simpsons series. Users can look at the popularity of each episode, watch “clips that rock,” and a “rarities” section of video that even die-hard fans might not have seen. (Slate)

Five Below has become the fastest-growing teen retailer in the U.S. by jumping quickly onto kid and teen trends. The store was founded with the idea that kids could afford everything offered with their allowance money, and unlike other dollar stores Five Below skips the “necessities,” instead focusing on the fun things that kids would want. Though teens are fickle customers, and the store’s success depends on finding the new items that resonate with them, so far they have managed to steadily grow during a difficult time with their tactics—and with no online presence to speak of. (BuzzFeed)

Did you know searching Ypulse.com surfaces all related data that we have on the topic you need, pulled from our ongoing bi-weekly surveys of Millennials 14-32-years-old? Gold subscribers can click on “show all data” to explore in-depth tables that breaks down statistics by gender, race, ethnicity, education, and location. It’s instant, current data about the Millennials generation, at your fingertips. (Ypulse)

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