Update: How cute! Old Navy marketing starts girls on sexualization path as toddlers

Old Navy fashion

Michelle Cove, who is the founder of MediaGirls, a media literacy program in Brookline, Massachusetts, sent along this photo and comment, as a follow up to my previous post about Old Navy advertising. "Sexualizing girls early isn’t always about … [Read more...]

Parents see their children hurt by stereotyped toy marketing, demand that retailers stop

lettoybetoys

Some parents across the pond decided they have had enough of the gender-stereotyped toy marketing that is being pushed on their kids by retailers. They got organized, and less than a year ago, Let Toys Be Toys burst onto the scene. They have had … [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...]

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...]

Vote today in the bad toy contest

cell phone monkey

It’s the TOADY. I do enjoy this annual contest, to select the worst toy of the year, as a counterpoint to the Toy of the Year award – the TOTY – which is sponsored by the toy industry. Sometimes the choices in both contests are strikingly … [Read more...]

A photo essay: What can a girl be?

Monster HIgh

I took a stroll through the toy aisles of a major retailer with my camera. The aisles with toys for girls are conveniently color coded with pink. The boys' aisles are blue, of course. This helps you find the correct and proper toy for your children. … [Read more...]

Mainstream retailer questions the gender police. I feel giddy.

Mainstream retailer questions the gender police. I feel giddy.

Is J. Crew a subversive company that questions the cultural paradigm? Or was the decision to publish a photo of a mother painting her small son’s toenails hot pink a deliberate business decision designed to generate controversy and therefore free … [Read more...]

No, your baby can’t read: Deceptive and unfair marketing to new parents

No, your baby can't read: Deceptive and unfair marketing to new parents

The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood is taking on Your Baby Can Read. The company tells parents in infomercials that their baby can learn to read from watching the company's videos, which are similar to flashcards. This is deceptive marketing … [Read more...]

Cinderella Ate My Daughter, and she’s chomping on me, too

Cinderella Ate My Daughter, and she's chomping on me, too

My sister and I used to love to dress up in my mother’s old prom dress, which we found deep in a closet in the attic. It was a pale pink, with lots of fluffy petticoats.  The flouncy skirt thrilled me. It rose up and whirled with me as I spun … [Read more...]

The best gift: A chance to grow up without limits.

The best gift: A chance to grow up without limits.

Decades ago, little girls (my sister and I) were playing with Legos, and they weren’t even pink. We also enjoyed playing with trucks, and dressing up in mom’s old prom dress. My boys have found cars, trucks and construction toys under the Christmas … [Read more...]

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