It’s still . . . STILL a man’s world and sadly, remains the face in the motorcycling world. Given that a reported +80 percent of household spending is controlled by women; this factor doesn’t seem to inspire motorcycle advertisers to do better and include the female demographic in their promotional campaigns.
Furthermore, the fact that women riders represent over 14% of rider populations still doesn’t encourage fair and equal motorcycle marketing which women deserve. Women are still depicted as objects more than as riders. And this couldn’t be more clear in this offensive advertising campaign Italian motorcycle manufacturer Aprilia produced.
Banned Offensive Aprilia Motorcycle Ad Objectified Women
Here is an advert placed in the Spring (2012) by Italian motorcycle manufacturer Aprilia motorcycles. The advertisement’s life wasn’t long as it was forced to removal following complaints from the Women’s Institute of Spain, thankfully. The “inmujer ” in Spain, whose advertising-monitoring-sector considered the ad to be sexist and succeeded in their fight in having it removed.
“Arrecife” Translated Means Causeway
The Aprilia advert you see here literally translated means: “The Arrecife Range: Now several sizes smaller” literal translation “scale Reef: now several heights less”.
Arrecife is a noun meaning, a “Causeway, a road paved with stone; mole” as well as ” a reef, ridge of hidden rocks lying close under the surface of the water”; and “Reef Arrecife de coral” a coral reef.
So you can put together the references with regard to this ad, and see the obvious offense to women.
It could further be Aprilia motorcycle’s ploy to play us against our own gender, to create that competitive desire by seeing “us” sexualized in this particular advertisement. A cute rear, an object of desire. In the aim of attracting the simpler minds of men but all the while playing on our female to female pecking order and hunger for rank above each other.
Nonetheless, I could not disagree more with this form of motorcycle advertising. I’m grateful the advert was pulled and even if you search, you can’t find any reference to it. It is a crude and terribly demeaning reference to women and the female gender.
As I consider myself incredibly open-minded, yet the degradation and objectification of women in media prevents my life’s work as a woman motorcyclist not failing our advances for equality and respect within the motorcycle industry…and others.
Thank you Women’s Institute Spain – you caught this one quickly and I know I’m grateful!