What can a boy be?

A boy and his dad

On the first nice day of spring in the Boston area, I caught site of this little boy pushing his pink stroller alongside dad, who was pushing his own stroller. Read about the problems with pink marketing at The Mamafesto: Beyond boxing girls in … [Read more...]

Gender stereotypes hurt boys, too

The Mask You Live In

Hyper-masculinity is the message. Who gets hurt? "Compared to girls, research shows that boys in the U.S. are more likely to be diagnosed with a behavior disorder, prescribed stimulant medications, fail out of school, binge drink, commit a … [Read more...]

Looking for better options this Halloween?

A Mighty Girl costume choice

This dad went shopping with his two daughters for a Halloween costume. At the super store they found a "boys career" section with doctor, fireman and astronaut costumes. What was in the girls "career" section? Trick question. No such section. But … [Read more...]

Baby apps, teen films, Stride Rite, Marissa Mayer, female-centric media or lack thereof, media research, Miley and Robin

Marissa Meyer, Yahoo CEO, poses for Vogue

This week, a mish-mash of media readings.  First of all, I'm grateful to my friend Melissa Wardy of PigtailPals for putting together this discussion for parents about the Miley Cyrus performance on MTV's music video awards show this weekend. What … [Read more...]

Just a toy? No.

How many times have I read an article criticizing stereotyped toys and toy marketing followed by a bunch of comments to the effect that "Relax, it's just a toy." What these misguided commenters fail to understand is the importance of play to … [Read more...]

What can I do to help protect all children from harmful media messages?

Kids need freedom to explore on their own

I spent last weekend at a conference full of energetic and committed people working to protect children from corporate marketing practices that harm children’s health and well-being for profit.  It was the 8th international Consuming Kids Summit in … [Read more...]

Rape culture and media complicity

Steubenville verdict

Feeling too devastated to write today. Not enough that a 16 year old girl is raped, degraded and humilitated by high school star athletes who feel entitled to use her body as a plaything. Not enough that in this internet age, pictures and video … [Read more...]

One Billion Rising to demand an end to violence against women

OneBillionRising

(Warning: The pictures in this post are disturbing, and I would say that they should not be viewed by children, except that, the problem is children are seeing this kind of thing. You should know.) This international event is happening tomorrow. … [Read more...]

M-rated video games cross-promoted with children’s building toys

megabloks1

If Halo is rated M for mature game players only, then why the cross-promotion with Megabloks, intended for ages "8 and up"? Please watch this promotional video (or see screenshots below). Please note that the video includes the Xbox logo. How … [Read more...]

On the impossibility of protecting children from media violence

I'm glad the kids prefer lacrosse to the major sports teams.

When the kids were younger and watched football and baseball on television, there was a time when they were watching a game and a promo for one of the networks’ other shows came on during the commercial break. My two little boys witnessed, during the … [Read more...]

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