The inestimable Melissa Cole dug into her bag of outrage earlier today and came up with a mighty fistful of sexist bullshit, and bless her for it! Her examples are exclusively British, but the issue with sexism in beer — even more than sexism in spirits, and it’s pretty friggin’ bad over there, too — is widespread and global, and while it’s not as bad as it used to be, it can be still pretty egregious in some quarters..
Go read Melissa’s story over here.
What the brewers of beers like Slap & Tickle don’t seem to understand is that: a) women are beer consumers, too; and b) some men take offense at being treated like adolescent boys.
On the former point, one only has to turn to almost any beer festival, where females often seem as numerous as are males. (Although, to be fair, this is less the case at most European festivals than it is at North American ones.) Go to bars that specialize in beer and you’ll see women enjoying beer, often choosing from the more unusual offerings while the assembled males stick with their chosen brand. Stand outside of any store specializing in craft beer and you will find women leaving with interesting six-packs, perhaps not with the same frequency as men, but in steadily growing numbers.
On the latter, well, before I get comments about what a hopeless stick-in-the-mud I am and how I can’t take a joke, let me say that among friends I have a rather no-holds-barred approach to humour. But that’s because they know me and we understand each other. Where public advertising and product naming goes, it’s far, far more difficult to direct meaning or deliver nuance. What is put on display, be it a suggestive, boys-will-be-boys advertisement or a ribald pumpclip, will be judged for what it is, and a large number of mature and reasoned folk of both genders will judge it in the negative.
Worth considering the next time the topic of branding comes up in the brewhouse.