Campaign published The year ahead for women by Thinkbox CEO and Wacl VP Lindsey Clay. The article title should have added a qualifier to read, “The year ahead for White women,” as Clay is only concerned with her Caucasian sisters—and she probably doesn’t give a shit about non-White people.
As evidence of Clay’s ignorance, when presenting “facts” on the imbalanced representation of groups within adland, she acknowledged that women comprise 50 percent of the industry’s workforce, while minorities make up 13 percent—despite the fact that minorities account for 55 percent of the population in urban centers like London. In other words, White women are making tremendous strides in the UK advertising world, and minorities remain grossly underrepresented.
Of course, Clay is quick to disregard the greater diversity dilemma and charge right into advocating for gender equality (at least for White women). She offered seven solutions for increasing White women numbers and zero clues for boosting non-White figures. The seven solutions directly apply to creating equality for non-Whites too, but don’t expect Clay to realize it. And definitely don’t count on Clay to suggest redirecting her ideas to the real problem. Because in the end, Clay is completely equal to the average Mad Man—especially in her cultural cluelessness.
What an utterly ridiculous conclusion to draw. Are you truly saying that people who are writing to support equality for women are racist simply because they aren't tackling that injustice too? Complete rubbish. If she had been writing to decry the racial inequality in the industry and hadn't mentioned women would you have been arguing that she was a misogynist?
No, simply acknowledging the author opts to fight a battle that isn’t really a big issue. That is, women in advertising are doing just fine. Even female ad leaders have questioned if they truly face extra challenges in the field because of their gender.
Additionally, like so many in the advertising industry—especially White men and White women—the author opts to ignore the greater diversity problem, despite being completely aware of it. As an alleged leader of organizations, where she surely must have the ability to influence hiring decisions, does she not have a professional and moral obligation to address diversity? Again, the post simply sought to point out that she knows the greater diversity issue is out there, yet chooses to do nothing.
Thanks for the comment.
As a woman, of color, working in the advertising world, I'd just like to say that all of these white woman campaigning for more women in ad agencies are sucking all of the air out of the room. And hoarding it for themselves.
Discussions of truly diversifying our industry have died, and all talk is now of "parity for women" and "giving women space to create." Forgetting that there's already a lot of women, mostly white women, at agencies everywhere you look.
How about all of these women stop complaining about "only 3% of women being Creative Directors"(supposedly. It's really closer to 10%) and discuss why THEY THEMSELVES have locked minorities out of 99.9% of advertising completely?
How ‘bout we talk “diversification.”
Why does every one of these calls for diversifying, by white women, result in agencies just adding even more white women to the staff?
Or adding more white women to the jury?
Or sticking some vaguely ethnic actors in a campaign created by white men and women?
And then everyone celebrates how “diverse” advertising suddenly is in 2015?
Forgive me if I don’t shake my pompoms.
If I saw 3% minority ad agency employees in positions other than receptionist or unpaid student intern, that would be like a tenfold improvement over what there is now.
Then I’d shake my damn pompoms.
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