General Pants New Sexist Ad Campaign

Well General Pants are under the spotlight again for yet another sexist ad campaign. General Pants are repeat offenders. We've highlighted them in our #CrossedOff blog every year since 2010. 

There was the time they forced teenage staff to wear "I love sex" badges. The time they plastered their change rooms with images of pornography and prostitution advertisements. The time they used posters of a topless woman being stripped from behind. And who can forget their "Wet Dreams" promotion.

This time they have released a video and poster campaign called "Fit in" to advertise their new denim range. 

Screenshot_2016-03-31_11.50.35.png

What is most obvious from the in store posters and the accompanying video is the way the women in particular are sexualised (one is even topless) while the men appear mostly fully clothed.

This type of sexualised advertising is pervasive throughout shopping centres across the country. See what 30 minutes at Chadstone shopping centre revealed here

With so many studies showing the harm that objectification and sexualisation does to women and girls it is hard to believe that advertisers continue to market their products to us in this way. There has even been a recent study showing that sex doesn't actually sell after all. 

Screenshot_2015-12-18_09.23.55.png

What makes matters more unbelievable is that General Pants recently partnered with White Ribbon selling ribbons and wristbands in store and online to raise funds for the anti-violence campaign. This is ironic considering objectification of women, sexist jokes and language are all contributing factors to violence against women. 

Screenshot_2016-03-31_13.24.08.png

At Collective Shout we are committed to exposing those companies that continue to flog their products at the expense of women's well being. 

Join us in taking action!

Contact the Advertising Standards Board regarding their in store posters using our 'Lodge a Complaint' page

Contact General Pants:

Via phone: 1300 191 468

Via their website

Via Twitter

Via Facebook

Write a comment on their YouTube video

Whilst General Pants have been exploiting women and girls in advertising for years they have the choice to draw a line in the sand and change their ways. We invite General Pants to sign our Corporate Social Responsibility Pledge


Showing 3 reactions

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.
  • commented 2016-04-11 13:30:02 +1000
    Here darn here! With you Kirri Pless.. otally over it! I sent them this message:
    “Hello,
    I’d like to say how disgusted I am with your FIT IN video and poster advertisements. How dare you try and sell clothes using women’s almost naked bodies. It’s absolutely disgraceful. I and women all over the world are sick and tired of feeling objectified and being reduced to body parts. Why do you think SO many women have eating disorders? You are ADDING to this problem. I am often counselling young women who come to me regularly wanting to binge and purge to look like models and some want plastic surgery as well. When do companies like you start taking RESPONSIBILITY for the destructive messages you send out through your ads? Disgusting. I am sick of it. I will be making sure my friends and family think twice about ever shopping at your retail outlet, that’s for sure.” Catherine
  • commented 2016-04-04 11:47:42 +1000
    General Pants official response: GENERAL PANTS STATEMENT
    Friday, 1st April 2016

    In 2015, General Pants Co. partnered with White Ribbon – a charity that raises awareness about violence against women. White Ribbon works through primary prevention initiatives involving awareness raising, education, and including programs with youth. General Pants felt that as the leading youth retailer we could play a large part in helping White Ribbon get their message out there to an audience that is generally hard to tap into. General Pants has over 52 stores, an online business and a large social following across multiple channels, reaching over 500,000 people daily. We employ a 1800 strong work force that used together can draw significant awareness to the campaign/organisation. General Pants employ over 70% women, including 5 out of 8 executive board members, this cause is important to us and we felt we could make a difference.

    As part of the partnership General Pants created T-shirts with a positive General Pants/White Ribbon message ‘No Excuse for Abuse’ relevant for our target audience. Our workforce embraced the campaign through wearing the T-shirts, selling ribbons, pins and wristbands in all our stores across the country and raised over $25,000 for the cause in less than a three week period. We leveraged our owned channels to get the message to our entire customer base every week. In addition to the dollars that were raised, all our team members were given information about the White Ribbon cause which was organically shared with customers and through their personal social networks.

    Unfortunately at present, General Pants’ ‘Fit In – Whoever, However, Where Ever’ campaign has received negative feedback. The lead image of our ‘Fit In’ window display was one of over 150 shots for the campaign. It was chosen as it represented the denim in the best possible light and in retrospect; more consideration should have been made in regards to how the outfits would translate from the waist up. However, we still stand by the original sentiment of the campaign, which is inclusivity – we have the jeans for you no matter who you are, where you come from, or what you do.

    As a result of the above it has come to light that our charity partner White Ribbon has been receiving a barrage of unconstructive and negative public feedback. The partnership and the great work that White Ribbon and General Pants set out to achieve seems to be bundled up in an issue that is related to a singular campaign image and we ask that those campaigning in this vein direct their energy into the great work that White Ribbon do and use their voice to show support. The team behind this charity work hard and tirelessly and General Pants will continue to support them.

    We believe the complaints and feedback about our recent campaign should be directed to General Pants and respectfully our charitable partners should not be brought into the argument as this is completely unacceptable and undermines what White Ribbon stand for. Together we are working to be the change.
  • commented 2016-04-01 17:23:33 +1100
    Totally over it! I sent them this message:
    “Hello,
    I’d like to say how disgusted I am with your FIT IN video and poster advertisements. How dare you try and sell clothes using women’s almost naked bodies. It’s absolutely disgraceful. I and women all over the world are sick and tired of feeling objectified and being reduced to body parts. Why do you think SO many women have eating disorders? You are ADDING to this problem. I am often counselling young women who come to me regularly wanting to binge and purge to look like models and some want plastic surgery as well. When do companies like you start taking RESPONSIBILITY for the destructive messages you send out through your ads? Disgusting. I am sick of it. I will be making sure my friends and family think twice about ever shopping at your retail outlet, that’s for sure.”
icon

Recent Friends