‘Ride me all day’ bus pisses everyone off on a rainy Cardiff Monday morning
I was cycling down Cowbridge Road this morning, feeling very pleased with myself for not puking in the dentist’s chair, when I got stuck behind this bus:
It said lots of things to me. It said that, in 2015, an advertising agency and ‘family-run’ company still found it acceptable to run this ad. It said that a bus journey needs to be sexualised in order to sell itself. It said that prostitution is something to be trivialised and joked about.
What it didn’t say is: “this company is for people like you”.
It was aggressive, offensive and impolite. After I tweeted about it at 9.30, we had literally hundreds of responses. Not from ‘bleeding heart, whiney liberals’, but from people who didn’t want this kind of advertising shoved in their face first thing in the morning.
With our following of 30,000 people, we try not to use We Are Cardiff to express opinions, but we felt like we had an obligation to the women and men of the city to call this company out on the commodification of a woman’s body, and the trivialisation of prostitution.
The story was covered by the Guardian, the Huffington Post, the Independent, the Mirror, Western Mail and ITV, and by the Everyday Sexism campaign. Even the Daily Mail and Daily Star reported it! As a result of such incredible pressure, the company told Cardiff MP Stephen Doughty that it was a ‘misjudgement’, and that the adverts would be withdrawn within the day.
The company made a statement saying that the “objectives have been to make catching the bus attractive to the younger generation”. Do young people buy stuff because it uses prostitution as a marketing tool? We don’t think so!
Well done, people of Cardiff (and everywhere else), for making your voice heard and getting results.
Moral of the story: GET ANGRY AND GET SOMETHING DONE! Never stay quiet!!!
Big love from your We Are Cardiff women – Hana & Helia x