Menstuff® reports on what the press and/or some corporations are saying about men. This information is available in several ways. Mediawatch reviews the media's portrayal of men in advertising directed to or about men during 2001 and 2002. Often a click on the photo will present a larger picture. This page is basically a script format that includes comments that may not have images attached for 2001. See also 2002. Newsbytes are made up of stories and articles regarding men for 2002, 2001, 2000 and 1999.
After reviewing some of these topics, we encourage you to write the corporations and the government and give them your viewpoint. Change doesn't usually take place when only one complaint is received. If you want to be part of the solution, let them hear from you! Here's how.
Increase Your Awareness
He's Your Little Brother
Reflections on Men
Pleasures for Men
Take Time to Enjoy Life
Blaze Seems to Set Fires
Got Questions? Got Answers?
Be Vocal. Say No Way!
Kids Grow Up Fast These Days
Are You Man Enough?
Heroin: Dying's the Easy Part
The New Look of Feminism
Sex. Are You Thinking About it Enough?
One Way Ticket
More Messages Directed to Pubescent Girls
Tobacco Is Whacko if You're a Teen
Suffer the Consequences
Real Friends, Real Bourbon, Real Drunk
Martex Sheets and Towels
Prostate Cancer Awareness Month
Fashion and AIDS
Asking Saves Kids
It Doesn't Mean You Have to Have Sex
Men in Skirts
Psychiatry Committing Fraud
Be Productive, Not Reproductive
Get Caught Reading
Jim Beam's On Track Mind
Should Executions be Televised?
The Ultimate Guy & Chick Cars of All Time
What if Cigarette Ads Told the Truth?
The Sins of the Fathers
What You Need to Know About Meningitis
The Most Dangerous Job in America
Hidden Classic - Behind the Veil
Women's Top 8 Sexual Fantasies
Sex and the City Takes Off
Fine Selection of All Sorts
The Lives of Men
Take the Sex S.A.T.
Men's Health Total Body
The Queen Who Would be King
Love It Shove It
Sex Should Last 30 Minutes
Seven Secrets to a Killer Body Image
A Wholesome Poison
Booze, Babes and Beef, USA
My Cancer Story
How to Raise Healthy Children
How Many People have We Slept With?
6 Critical Symptoms Patients Ignore
Seven Ways to Lengthen Your Life
Letter from Pirson
How do Dads Stack Up in Your Newspaper?
Dads in the Delivery Room
Man of the House Redefined
The Daddy Bond
Kids Hurting Kids: Bullets in the Schoolyard
Boy Du Jour
Stop Dinner Party Bores
What NY Couples Fight About
Evil: What Makes People Go Wrong?
The Big Tease
Life in the Gay Area
Unmarried with Children
Rule the Office
Pros & Cons of Pot
Summer 01 MH-18 has Three Covers
You Big Smoothie
The Bathroom Tapes
Euthanasia-Dying with Dignity
Special Issue on Fatherhood
Lawyers on Love
The Nightmare Drug
Look Who's Stalking
'My Wife Left Me for a Woman'
'Can I Enjoy Sex?'
Dating Rich Women
When Coworkers Attack
Avoiding the Jack
CMovie Ratings for Kids
DSickening New Wave of TV Commercials Show Men Betraying Their Buddies for Nuggets, Booze and Women:
DDouble Covers of Gear Magazine
DNike Slams the Disabled
DNorelco Promotes More Violence
DNoreclo Promotes Violence
MA Call for a Boycott of All Simon & Schuster Products
BPleasures for Men are truly pleasures.
MDropping Bombs on Your Moms
D Find Your Voice - Virginia Slims
C It's How You Say It - Brut
D General Motors Plays to Women and Ignores Men in Men's Magazines
DWord has it that Brad Pitt will be the first centerfold for the new teen edition of CosmoGirl...
DDawson's Creek: a senior high school girl openly and persistently tries to seduce a junior high boy to have sex - guess who wouldn't be charged as the rapist?...
DReal Men. Real allure. A new men's fragrance from Chanel. Right...
CCanon joins with The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to stop child abductions...
DStay Clear of Stay Clear
DWal-Mart Refuses Couples Contraception
DSeventeen Pushes Sex
DWinton's "No Bull" Campaign
CMars Makes Promises
CHennessy can relate
Doutpost.com & AOL - Demonstrate Corporate Sanctioned Animal Abuse
DDDSony - Most Degrading Portrayal of Men in 1998
CCalvin Kline - Positive view regarding "Looksism"
D"No Fear" clothing line
DDenny's Restaurants - Opposes "Male-Bonding"
DPizza Hut - Follows Denny's Example
DWalt Disney - Promotes "No Fear" in Their Retail Stores
DCCrayola - Denigrates Native Americans - 7/27/99 update.
CThere's always a first time
Bud Lite Shows Man Buying Next Round while
Comet Destroys In-laws
Motorola Cell Phone Recommends Leaving
Your Friend to Die
Smirnoff Ice Sacrifices Buddy and says
Wendy's Values Nuggets over Friends
Watch Out When Buying Gear
We did hear back from Bob (4/2/2001
Whoa, no one is conning anyone!!!! A lot of magazines do multiple covers and we only have one distribution cycle. The coverlines and immediate use the same, and this is certainly the first time we've heard someone may be fooled into buying it twice.
Thanks for saying we have a really good magazine -- Im proud of it, although even I dont think it's so good people should buy the same issue more than once!
All the best,
Bob Guccione Jr
"We're Sorry" (12/00)
Nike Slams the Disabled (11/00)
Nike USA Consumer Affairs is 800-344-6453, M-F 6am-5:50pm PST. At
times they experience very high call volumes, probably after an ad
like the above runs. Their mailing address is: Nike, Inc., Consumer
Affairs, One Bowerman Drive, Beaverton, OR 97005-6453.
Vive Cuervo (10/16/00)
Norelco Promotes More Violence
This is to register a complaint about several of your television commercials. The man dropping the mascot with his brief case and the one in the football stands where the girl friend doesn't like another woman touching his face and whollaps him with a bat. What kind of customer reaction do you think you would get if I you were to reverse these scenarios for your women's razor line? While it has long been accepted that violence against men is humorous and violence by women to men is accepted, it is still violence. And, it isn't funny to many of us and it does no good in reducing violence that is perpetrated against men by women that often ends up with men becoming violent back and going to prison for it. Our sons and daughters get numb to this, as we have, but it still gets ingrained in the system. Please don't be a party to this.
I would like a response, if at all possible. Thanks for listening.
Norelco Promotes Violence
for Men are truly pleasures (4/00)
MDropping Bombs on Your Moms
Find Your Voice - Virginia Slims
It's How You Say It - Brut
General Motors Plays to Women & Ignores
Men in Men's Magazines
So, imagine my surprise when I opened the September, 1999 "Why We Love Football" special issue of GQ (which used to stand for Gentleman's Quarterly) to find a six-page 4-color insert from Genereal Motors advertising a sweepstakes that raises funds for breast cancer. If you're really into football and prefer to learn about women's health versus your own, you'll love the copy (the bold is ours.). "On the cover (1), Nadja in a silver liquid satin dress from Dana Buchman Luze Collection. This page (2), Ling in gold, burning paper, sequin dress by Vivienne Tam." It goes on to say, "In it's third year, GM and the Council of Fashion Designers of America have teamed up to fight breast cancer through Concept: Cure. This unique and creative collaboration pairs GM vehicles with top fashion designers for "makeovers." Designed to be one-of-a-kind vehicles, they're the ultimate in luxury and style. The designers donate their time and talents to create these vehicles for the Concept: Cure sweepstakes. By entering this national sweepstakes and making a pledge, you can join them in the fight against breast cancer - and maybe win one of their vehicles! To date, Concept: Cure has raised more than $2.6 million to benefit such breast cancer research and awareness organizations as the Nina Hyde Cancer Center at Georgetown University's Lombardi Cancer Center. Every woman is at risk for breast cancer. The National Breast Cancer Coalition (NBCC) urges you to take an active role in your health, and learn as much as you can about the science of breast cancer. According to the NBCC: (1) One out of eighty women in the U.S. will develop breast cancer in her lifetime and (2) Breast cancer is the most common from of cancer in American women. To give yourself a fighting chance against breast cancer, the National Alliance of Breast Cancer Organizations (NABCO) recommends: (1) Yearly breast examinations by a doctor or nurse. (2). Annual screening mammogram beginning at age 40. (3) Learning how your breasts normally feel and examining them regularly." Five pages (2, 3, 4, 5, & 6 above) follow describing the car designers, the special cars, and how to "make a pledge" and enter a sweepstakes.
And, the saga continues. Further back in the publication, Saks Fifth Avenue has a full page four-color ad that they didn't put their name on. The headline reads "Fashion Targets Breast Cancer September 23-26" (though October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Saks' Laurie Rode's said it made a nice lead-in). The ad gives an 888 number where Saks tells you that all 59 stores will donate 2% of their sales during this time, plus sell you a long sleeve t-shirt. Also, if you give them your home phone number (hopefully that's not a ploy to use it in their other marketing activities without your knowledge), they'll tell you which regional charities will receive these funds.
Because women's cancer organizations, even the American Cancer Society, are so organized, and carry so much clout, they got American Express, Continental Airlines, Walmart and the New York Times involved. Saks' Laurie Rodes said that they did it during this week because it was the only time during the year that the fashion designers were available. She also said they weren't aware of the conflict with the 11th annual Prostate Cancer Awareness Week, but that even in the future, they would probably make the decision to do it then rather than not to do it at all.
You might think that was all. You hope, maybe they would do a story in their football issue during Prostate Cancer Awareness Week about someone like Superbowl winning quarterback Joe Montana. According to a film he was in on prostate cancer, if his wife hadn't persisted in making him get an exam when he did, he would probably have died shortly thereafter. But, alas, no such story. Instead, GQ gives ten pages of editorial support to their advertisers and do a story about Chris Spielman, of whom the Buffalo Bill's owner called the most intense player they've had in thirty-seven years. The majority of the story is about his helping his wife through cancer (an admirable thing, don't get us wrong) and toughing it out without anyone really knowing. That's what we men do about our own illnesses and weaknesses and GQ didn't go there to encourage men to overcome their egos around having a prostate cancer exam before it's too late. They, too, probably weren't aware that this was Prostate Cancer Awareness Week. Another missed opportunity. Then again, maybe they were afraid to go to that vulnerable place that most of us will have to go to sometime before we die. Hopefully, in time.
Research funding is substantially in favor of breast cancer and continues to be the recipient of more grants, income from the US Postal Service stamp program, and now special cars designed at GM. In 1997, about $2,700 was spent on prostate cancer research for every death from the disease, while spending for breast cancer was five times that amount or $12,800 per death. Investment in AIDS research totaled $47,000 per death. The scarcity of funding for prostate cancer research creates a vicious cycle. Young and established researchers are drawn to more profitable avenues of investigation; private enterprise views the field as too risky for investment; and ideas that might lead to a cure are conceived but never completed. Source: CapCure (http://www.capcure.org)
Now, don't get us wrong. We support spending even more on breast cancer awareness and research. That's not the point. The point is that significantly more men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year, even without the huge awareness campaigns. And, self exams aren't a viable option. So, if we don't get a doctor's help, our survival chances diminish when early detection isn't achieved. And many health plans don't pay for these exams. And no laws requiring them to do so.
On the other hand, there are federal laws requiring all health plans that cover mastectomies to provide breast cancer reconstruction for mastectomy patients. including coverage of prosthetic devices and reconstruction for restoring symmetry. A federal law, mind you. It's called the Women's Health and Cancer Rights Act (H.R. 4328). Alas, no such concern for men. Under many health plans, the simple DRE or PSA blood test must be paid for out of the man's pocket. (For questions or concerns about the law, contact the Department of Labor's hotline at 202.219.8776.)
Pleading ignorance or not, I think GM is "out-of-bounds" with this program and should reconsider it's timing (during Prostate Cancer Awareness Week) and it's direction (to men in men's magazines). I think that GM is doing a disservice to men who, over the years, built their market for them. The fact than somewhere around 300 men die each year from breast cancer not withstanding (none of the promotion or editorial talked about this to the GQ audience), this seems like it's motivation might have come from a direction that doesn't have anything to do with their concern with women's health.
If you want to let GM know what you think about the timing and direction of this program and the lack of any support for men around prostate cancer, here are some places to start: John F. Smith, Jr, Chm Bd, Pres & CEO (313.556.5000-it's better to send him a letter, but chances he'll never see it), Matt Pensinger, Adv & Corp Mktg (313.667.2722) General Motors Corporation, General Motors Bldg, 3044 W. Grand Blvd, Detroit, MI 48202 or you might check their website at www.generalmotors.com. Unfortunately, there are no women VPs listed in the Standard Directory of Advertisers. Of the 30 executives listed, the first woman to show up, Luana Floccuzio (Dir-Adv of NAO), is in the 26th slot and is followed by Elizabeth C. Lazar (Dir - Media Operations) and Nancy M. Kaza (Mgr Adv Resources NAO). The only women "executives" listed. And, the only GM advertising agency run by a woman is N. W. Ayer Detroit (2000 Fisher Bldg, Detroit, MI 48202 313.874.8500), the agency for GM Brand Advertising. Their president is Dannielle Colliver. Coincidence? I think not. Then there's Saks Fifth Avenue, the company to schedule their Breast Cancer sales event for profit (only 2% of sales goes to the charities) the same week as the Prostate Cancer week. Bryan E. Kendrick is their Vice-Chairman, and Jackie Lividini, the VP of PR, at 212.753.4000. I talked with her assistant, Laurie Rhodes at 212.940.4246. All three are at 611 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10022. Let us and them know what you think. And, be sure to check our "Today" section each day from September 20-24 for information about Prostate Cancer. You can also find information and resources here.
Is this totally unconscious on the part of the organizations putting this together. I hope so but I have a hard time believing this is a total coincidence. One thing that came up is that it seems those corporations that contribute the most money to women's organizations are the same ones that have the fewest women in upper management. Isn't that an interesting concept. "If we contribute alot of money to women's organizations, they won't dare push us to have women in upper management for fear of loosing the money." Interseting thought. Why else would GM have no women VPs? We would love to see someone write their graduate thesis around an investigation of this issue!
Real Men. Real allure.
Canon joins with The National Center for Missing
and Exploited Children to stop child abductions...
Stay Clear of Stay Clear
The trend of strange continues in the facial care category with another product designed to fight acne - pHisoderm 4 way Daily Acne Cleanser (2) produced by Chattem, Inc. It uses the headline "It's better to use" and shows a young woman with a "Zit Be Gone" construction grade disk sander to remove the zits from her face. Has the advertising industry lost its ability to reach our youth creatively without violent or abusive images. Apparently so. Nelson Trottier is President of Chattem, Consumer Products Division, 1715 W 38th St, Chattanooga, TN 37409 at 800.366.6833 or 423.821.4571. Andrea Crouch is VP Marketing for Toiletries. WF of R, Inc, is the advertising agency at 411 Branchway Rd, Richmond, VA 23235. 804.794.2871.
Seventeen Pushes Sex But Not
Winton's "No Bull" Campaign
Mars Makes Promises
Hennessy Can Relate.
outpost.com & AOL Demonstrate Corporate Sanctioned Animal Abuse
Most Degrading Portrayal of Men by a Major Manufacturer in 1998
Calvin Kline - Looksism.
No Fear line of clothing.
It all started at the major wrestling championship in Southern California. There were lots of "No-fear" T-shirts and caps around. The air-brusher was busy putting "No Fear" on the back of event T-shirts along with cartoon bulldogs with fangs and puffed out muscles and other such images. Many of the end users were thin, small muscled boys getting ready to "be tough". Well, I decided to have my own T-shirt designed and wear it at the event (No Fear, No Tears, Die Numb). I had a number of parents and young wrestlers thank me for reminding them about the value and importance of fear - how ignoring it or pushing it out of the way can create unnecessary dangers. How the great Samurai know fear and don't hide form it but bring it out in front, put it on the end of their sword, and cut with it. This design is an improvement on the original airbrushed design. From there, I designed a second one to change the emphasis from "No Fear" to "Know Fear". You can download the individual design for the back of a T-shirt or a whole sheet of smaller logos that you can printout, cut up into individual iron-ons to put on the front of a T-shirt where a breast pocket would go and give the others to friends to do the same.
Here's your chance to get involved by making your own T-shirt, then wear it and feel your own feelings. And, encourage others to feel theirs. When the opportunity presents itself, talk about the importance of feelings, especially fear. Remember the words of Hannah Arendt, "Fear is an emotion indispensable for survival." All feelings are good - fear, pain, sadness, joy and anger. It's the behaviors that we use to demonstrate the feelings that need to be looked out. For instance, anger is a feeling. Violence is not a feeling. It is a behavior. There are many other ways anger can be expressed that are healthy yet nonviolent. So, it is the behaviors we need to work with. Think about it! And, make your T-shirt today!
Dennys Opposes "Male-Bonding"
Enter a sarcastic macho loner, who is obviously afraid to show any traits of what a real man is all about. He minimizes what they are doing and convinces them to stuff their feelings with food - the product being this Denny's 1/3 lb. burger (at $5.79 w/fries). After all, its a "manly meal".
I couldnt figure out who Denny's target market was unless it was very insecure men. I thought the campaign was probably created by some homophobic men who, from their own insecurity about their manhood, were trying to regain it by putting down men who were actually working on themselves in an effort to find ways to become better men and be in healthy relationships with women. To my complete surprise, I was told by the people at Flagstar (the company that owns Denny's) that the head people in marketing and at the advertising agency responsible for the business are woman. No further comment.
If this type of advertising bothers you, let them know! If you call, youll be directed to Customer Service and told "your comments have been noted - thank-you." I suggest contacting them by writing: Jennifer Harmlin, Dennys Corp, c/o Flagstar, 203 E Main St., Spartanburg, SC 29319 (864.597.8000) and Loretta Lurie, Lowe & Partners, 1114 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10036 (212.403.6810). Dont forget to cc: John Romandetti, Dennys president and stop by every Dennys, ask for the manager, and tell them why youre not eating there. By the way, rumor has it that Dennys is about to start a $100,000,000 remodeling program to put divider walls between the counter seats so these men will feel safe eating there. I havent been able to confirm this, to date, however. Using your expression, Denny's, "Can we unbond now?"
Pizza Hut Follows Denny's Example
If you think its funny, Pizza Hut, and you really want to make a real statement. Change the Domino's delivery person to the daughter, supporting her to go out in the world on her own, to become someone. See how that would play in the market. This new commercial brings to mind the Playboy ad "What kind of man reads Playboy". What is your target market, Pizza Hut? Cruel, insincere, families, I surmise. If you're one of those people, buy Pizza Hut. If not, buy any other kind of pizza out there. I'm sure anyone else cares more about their family members than Pizza Hut seems to. What kind of families do these advertising executives come from or do these two advertising behemoths think that shame is the key to a man's stomach? Surely, there are more wholesome themes you could offer for a new product than what you have given us. I just don't get it. Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, and Pizza Hut is from Wichita, which seems to be in a totally different galaxy. Just remember, Pizza Hut, you may still be but were not in Kansas anymore.
Walt Disney Promotes "No Fear" in Their Retail Stores
This is regarding your Team Mickey retail establishment in the Disneyland Hotel. In a retail establishment directed to children, I would expect products that are fun and, if they carry a message, that it is a healthy one.
Most of the product line fit the Disney image. The Disney characters. The team sportswear. However, most of your other clothing was supplied with the "No Fear" label and carried less than healthy messages. Just the "No Fear" message to adolescent boys encourages them to be tough, do stupid things, not acknowledge true fear and go "over the edge". If you know the statistics, adolescent boys participate in this dangerous area too much as it is without Disney encouraging them.
Besides the shirts, pants and hats that were encouraging "No Fear", there were T-shirt messages as follows:
Feel it when you lose,
Inflict it when you dont.
When the gloves hit the ground,
The real fun begins.
Kick me, spike me, throw me, knock me into the ground. I like it.
Does not play well with others.
It seems others have a problem with losing.
Are these truly the kinds of messages the Disney Corporation wants to portray? As the visionaries of the world for children, I would hope not.
We will be putting this message on our website and will update it
when we hear your response and proposed action steps to be taken, if
any. Yours in continued growth,
Crayola Denigrates Native Americans
I was very disturbed to see that the new 64 pack of Crayolas I just purchased contains a color called "Indian Red". Ive returned it to you and have thrown out the rest since I dont want to expose children to what I believe to be a racist image.
Does it represent "Indians" from the Southwest, or the East or Eskimo. Actually, Indians are from India. Native Americans in this country are not nor do they call themselves "Indian". That, like the word "savage", were imposed terms given them by our government. Much like the governments use of Hispanic, though the word "Indian" carries a lot more damaging history with it.
It may not be intentional, but surely your people with all their creativity can come up with a more suitable name for the color.
I am not Native American. And I am offended. I would be most interested in knowing where you stand on this situation and will report the progress on our website. Yours in continued growth, Gordon Clay
Well, the PR department wrote us back that "Indian Red" is a color found in India and there weren't any plans to change.
Update - On 7/27/99, we got the news that Binney
& Smith, after over 250,000 complaints, decided to change
the name of the "Indian Red" to "Chestnut". Who says we can't make a
There's always a first time