Monday, December 7, 2009

advertising by mark driscoll?

has anyone else seen the new Dockers ads? i was reading the sunday paper yesterday and came across a full page of Modern Man.

the full text of the ad is below. i would love to know what your reaction is to this:

Once upon a time, men wore the pants, and wore them well. Women rarely had to open doors and little old ladies never crossed the street alone. Men took charge because that’s what they did. But somewhere along the way, the world decided it no longer needed men. Disco by disco, latte by foamy non-fat latte, men were stripped of their khakis and left stranded on the road between boyhood and androgyny. But today, there are questions our genderless society has no answers for. The world sits idly by as cities crumble, children misbehave and those little old ladies remain on one side of the street. For the first time since bad guys, we need heroes. We need grown-ups. We need men to put down the plastic fork, step away from the salad bar and untie the world from the tracks of complacency. It’s time to get your hands dirty. It’s time to answer the call of manhood. It’s time to WEAR THE PANTS.


Last time I checked, Dockers also sold pants to women. Additionally, if you're going to sell something to a man, tell him to walk away from foamy lattes and salad bars, something that will make him a MAN, don't you think it should be something other than pleated trousers?

It seems like the Dockers marketing team lifted copy straight from Mark Driscoll's blog - especially when you read what he has to say about biblical masculinity:
"latte-sipping Cabriolet drivers do not represent biblical masculinity, because 'real men'—like Jesus, Paul, and John the Baptist— are "dudes: heterosexual, win-a-fight, punch-you-in-the-nose dudes."

But would dudes wear Dockers?

Really would love to hear what all of you think about this. Especially you, Anna Jordan...

33 comments:

Abby said...

I'm offended by Dockers. hm... never thought that would be a sentence I would say. Plus, I'm pretty sure that if you polled most American men, the majority would say that a "dockers wearing men" falls closer to the metrosexual category, than say, those who wear carharts. I'm just sayin.

sonjakelly said...

Sometimes I like to wear pants. And drive. And help little old ladies across the street. And be a hero. And have adventures. But that doesn't mean that I preclude men from doing those things! What the world needs is not more steak-eating, heterosexual, take-charge men, but more PEOPLE who are willing to lend a hand. And take initiative in their faith communities. And stand up for someone on the bus. And hold doors. And become competent/ethical/servant/listening/loving leaders. And I'm sorry, if men can't drink lattes, then about half the world's population would hardly wake up. And that is what I think. Thanks for posting, Lo!

sonjakelly said...

I kindof like to wear pants. And be a hero. And I like being in the driver's seat sometimes. And help little old ladies across the street. But that doesn't mean that I strip "my man" from those things! What the world needs is not more men with steak knives but more PEOPLE who are willing to hold doors and and stand up for someone on the bus and take a leadership role in their faith community and show the world what it means to be a confident/servant/respectful/ethical leader. And that is what I think. Thanks for posting, Lo!

sonjakelly said...

Sometimes I like to wear pants. And drive. And help little old ladies across the street. And be a hero. And have adventures. But that doesn't mean that I preclude men from doing those things! What the world needs is not more steak-eating, heterosexual, take-charge men, but more PEOPLE who are willing to lend a hand. And take initiative in their faith communities. And stand up for someone on the bus. And hold doors. And become competent/ethical/servant/listening/loving leaders. And I'm sorry, if men can't drink lattes, then about half the world's population would hardly wake up. And that is what I think. Thanks for posting, Lo!

sonjakelly said...

Aaaand sometimes I also like to post things three times. Don't know how that happened. Totally embarrassing.

Lesley Miller said...

Oh, sick. I'm totally annoyed with Dockers and Mark Driscoll.

Great post Laura. I want to know what stupid advertising firm came up with that ad. And, I also want to hear from Anna J.

.adam. said...

Well...I'm no Anna J....but I did just go pick up a pair of dockers and on the way home found myself punching a little old lady while walking her across the street and repeated calling myself a dude....I never knew life could be so good.

...not even going to get started on the Driscollesque "man of God"

p.s. LO, can you please tell your husband to return a freaking phone call....I have something important to talk to him about.

;) thanks

Anna Jordan said...

Oh there's so much to say! First I'd like to start off with "Good lord Dockers! It's almost 2010! Your ideology is about as outdated as the cut of your pants. Real men don't wear dockers - old men wear dockers...".

Fashion statements aside, whoever designed this ad campaign most definitely is a fan of Mark Driscoll. This is offensive on so many levels.

First of all, it alienates a large majority of people. I understand the value of being provocative in your advertising, but alienating your audience is not so much an effective tactic.

Second of all, it's degrading to women. Like Sonja, I like to wear pants, drive cars, be a hero and have adventures. I care for the elderly and the people in need in my community. I strive to make the world a better place regardless of what I'm wearing - I expect that from all people.

Third of all, this ad annoys me personally because I happen to be married to a fantastic man who cares about the world around him, gives generously, loves freely and also has a clean-cut business beard, drinks chai tea lattes, and shops for expensive watches online in his free time. Fashion and hot beverage choices aside, the world needs more people like him. Not because he has great style or impeccable hygiene, but because he can't walk past a homeless person without giving them money or food. Because he spends time caring for his family and friends, praying for his community and being actively involved in the church.

Regardless of whether or not your are a man, woman, etc, we should all try to "be heros" to " put down our forks and untie the world from the tracks of complacency" - that is an admirable and worthwhile task for all people. It's sad to me that Dockers chose to take a good value and corrupt it with gender discrimination and skewed ideologies. I have a pretty good idea that there are a lot of people across the country that will read this ad and laugh - that's all. How frustrating that we live in a society that is so insensitive to these kind of gendered statements that we laugh at them and give them little to no thought.

Thank you Laura for thinking critically about the media around you and for sharing it with others.

Anna Jordan said...

AND I thought I would add this: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/01/business/media/01adco.html

All I have to say is: Thank goodness their female VP was there to test this ad with women to make sure "it's not sexist".

Jessica said...

Well I like to wear pants too. Actually usually I prefer skirts. But when I do wear pants, I do not prefer Dockers.

T.S.B. said...

When John the Baptist dunked Jesus into the Jordan River, he was sporting a crisp new pair of camel-hair, wrinkle-free, front-pleated Dockers. That is beyond question.

Laura Ortberg Turner said...

I knew Anna would kill it. And Sonj - I'm glad you posted three times :) Seriously, though, the emphasis on PEOPLE willing to lend a hand was all they needed to go for. Do they really think that men will buy Dockers because they're so . . . Manly? Heroic? The only thing to wear while you drink your black coffee and make fun of the sissies and their lattes?

Argh.

betsie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
betsie said...

betsie said...
I honestly don't know where to start. With Dockers? With Driscoll and his gang? Few things drive me as far up the wall as this does, and I could go on forever about it.

But my favorite point to make (besides "grow a pair") is that men who buy into this (especially evangelical men who buy into it), think that what they wear, what they drink and eat, what they do for leisure, etc, is what makes them masculine. Here's the thing: wearing flannel (or dockers) and eating bloody slabs of meat and driving a truck, do not make men better providers. It does not make them tougher. Nor does it make them gentler and kinder, like Jesus asks them to be. It does not make them, or anyone else who does this stuff, better leaders.

Saying that wearing a pair of Dockers or owning a gun, or whatever, is what makes men manly is an insult to those men around the world who must hunt, plow fields, or wear cheap, sensible clothes in order to feed their families.

Mallory said...

I'm not willing to listen to anybody who feels comfortable applying 20th-century institutionalized concepts like "heterosexuality" to first century sexual identities.

j. shipley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
j. shipley said...

Well, first off the design is pretty lame. One arm is longer than the other and is entirely out of proportion for that matter. Geesh. So that's an epic fail from the on-set.

Secondly, Dockers is making a desperate attempt to attach man-hood and masculinity to its cheezy, cheap kakis which are often pleated which as you well know is NOT okay and is so early nineties. There is nothing manly about pleats. I am just sayin'.

Thirdly, the first statement is bold. I am not sure men ever wore the pants well. Even Adam didn't wear pants, well until he ate the apple and then he wore a fig leaf. Ha. But metaphorically, what does it even mean to wear the pants well? And how does eating salads and sipping lattes equal failure to wear our pants well? And Disco has stripped us down to boyhood and androgyny? I mean really? To say that a non-traditional adherence to gendered behavior is a short-coming and that it has resulted in a genderless society is simply incredulous. The alternative they offer reinforces the stereotypical gender roles that many have fought long and hard to dismantle and is really no alternative at all. At least it's not an alternative that I want to take part in. And then to be told that if I don't op-in, then I am not a grown-up, or man for that matter is just insulting. It for sure doesn't compel me to head into k-mart and by a pair of Dockers. Oh, no.

And THEN, the place it puts women is even more alarming. It puts them back into the kitchen and nursery. And says to them, "I am a dude. I wear the pants. I am better than you are and I deserve all the control and power. Just cook me some dinner and make sure there's beer in the fridge. Oh and bare me another child while your at it. And then bathe, feed and raise the thing whilst I sit here on the couch watching the football game. And remember, I wear the pants" And that my friends is just utter bull-shit. And is no way to treat a lady. Or a person for that matter. And sure, many men have become pigs and lack a lot of class. We should open the doors for the ladies and yes, we should help an elderly woman across the street or give her our seat on the bus. Absolutely. But not because we want to "wear the pants" but because we should care for and respect, like Sonja said, people.

And later, I might have a few things to say about the whole complacency statement. Yes, we have become complacent in many ways but to say that it's because of not "wearing the pants" is just plain stupid. and annoying. Whew, I am all worked up now. Lol.

- j.

Laura Ortberg Turner said...

AMEN, j-ship!

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