• Sweden edition
 
Swedish Facebook fury over 'sexist' shop ad

Swedish Facebook fury over 'sexist' shop ad

Published: 29 Oct 2012 11:52 GMT+01:00
Updated: 29 Oct 2012 11:52 GMT+01:00

“We have certainly not meant to offend anyone,” said Coop press spokesman Magnus Nelin to The Local.

The commercial, featured below, was aired last week on Sweden’s TV4 and shows a woman shopping in a supermarket with a baby in a carrying device. While shopping, she repeatedly calls for “Liam”.

Finally, she finds him and it turns out that Liam is not a mischievous toddler escaping his mother but a middle-aged man who is checking out tools in the hardware department.

Many viewers reacted to the commercial, saying that it strengthens gender roles where women are in charge of household chores while men are irresponsible.

“You really have to look at this film as a small part of a larger picture. We wanted to show funny everyday situations that might occur in our shops,” said Nelin.

By Saturday some 8,000 people had liked a critical Facebook comment and almost 2,000 people had commented on the ads, according to daily Aftonbladet.

The comments varied between viewers finding the ad funny, those that were outraged, and those that were outraged by the discussion itself.

“What kind of idiots have thought up your last campaign,” one man wrote.

“Coop ridicules men and cements their irresponsibility. I don’t want to be portrayed that way,” another man wrote.

Others, however, took a different stance.

“Ignore the PC-brigade! I love your commercials,” one woman wrote on the page.

“I feel sorry for all the men who feel humiliated by the commercial. Can’t you just stop being silly,” another man wrote.

According to Nelin, most of the people that have been in touch with Coop about the commercial have been positive about the TV ads.

“But if we have made anyone feel as if we promote inequality or cemented existing gender roles, we want to apologize. All we meant to do was to depict our customers with a sense of humour and genuine warmth,” said Nelin.

Rebecca Martin

Follow Rebecca on Twitter here.

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

12:44 October 29, 2012 by JulieLou40
God, haven't people got anything better to do than complain at a funny advert? get a life!
13:32 October 29, 2012 by DAVID T
Swedish men need to grow some balls
13:38 October 29, 2012 by bnort
DAVID T, would you say they need to grow some...Swedish Meat Balls?
14:01 October 29, 2012 by Please Note:
Perhaps men should feature in adverts wearing makeup to ensure we do not gender stereotype (except in the Ikea Catalogue).
14:10 October 29, 2012 by Ddm
I don't believe in it. Men can't be like described above.
15:17 October 29, 2012 by FrauKuh
Just last week husband and I were in a big box store and I spent 20 minutes looking for him and here he was out in the car. So I can totally relate. Sorry guys.
18:18 October 29, 2012 by johan rebel
8,000 idiots with too much time on their hands.
23:40 October 29, 2012 by Uncle
ACTUALLY, just to be the devils advocate these opposers have a point. Except that they actually are getting money for it, unlike having a personal opinion.

In this ridiculously PC society, ANY joke about females (driving, shopping bags, walking on high wheels, trying to fix a computer) is a crazy taboo. Nobody even gets close to that without having ones head chopped off.

However constant jokes about idiot men in media are quite acceptable and encouraged. So far men were all OK with it with the view of "well, women have a glass ceiling, lower wages and bleed for 5 days a month, let them have a bit of fun on our account".

However I think that the strike on the nose once in a while should be in place. One cannot get equality parallel to the benefits of being the "weaker sex". It is the one or the other. Shall men be idiots? No problem (we just ruled the world for the last... mmm about 40 thousand years?), but this should come back as a boomerang. Equality, baby!
10:39 October 30, 2012 by skogsbo
The thing is, there is truth in the article, only its Clas Ohlson and biltema that are the day care centres for men of a certain age.

What all societies struggle with is accepting that men and woman ARE different, instead they keep pretending were are same and have identical traits.
13:12 October 30, 2012 by rise
The problem is the generation(s) of today is taking things all too personally. They're individualists whereas their parent's generation maybe was more into collectivism (and solidarity). Sometimes, in darker moments, I even call this age "the age of the narcissism".

When I watch this commercial I feel... nothing. Zero. Because the commercial isn't about ME.
10:16 October 31, 2012 by rramirez
There is no "fury"! Nobody cares about this. I was very excited when I moved to Sweden that there was an English language news site. Now I might come to The Local maybe once a week because so many of its stories are just silly and media generated. It compromizes the overall credibility of the site.
19:00 October 31, 2012 by dizzymoe33
This isn't discriminatory. When my step-dad walks into a store with my mom he makes a be-line right for the hardware/tool section. She is left alone to do all the shopping and then when she checks out with the groceries she spends 20 minutes looking for him. It is what it is nothing more and nothing to get your knickers in a bunch over!!
19:19 October 31, 2012 by Uncle
dizzymoe33

Nobody ever said that it is not realistic.

As realistic as greedy gold digger females who live on account of others, women who drive EXTREMELY badly and women who cannot fix a freaking DVD/Computer/iPhone/lamp. As realistic as women who cannot build a porch, cannot figure out how to connect to their own router, how to distinguish between the US politics in Vietnam vs Korea...

It is as reasonable as women who are afraid to complain about a very bad service, who cannot negotiate salary increase and who buy whatever a skilled electronics salesman shoves to them. All of the above is reasonable and everyone understands perfectly well what I am talking about here. Now go and try to make a commercial that ridicules the above commonalities. Let's see what happens to that ad agency.

The issue is the awful behaviour of females who sue for anything that is remotely reasonable, but feel free to ridicule men on every corner...
22:21 November 1, 2012 by dizzymoe33
@Uncle

Thank goodness I am not like the women you are describing in your comment!!! :o)

There will never be equality because men can and cannot do things as women can and the same with the women they can and cannot do things like the men. No big deal I just don't know why it is always an issue. If we were all the same it would get pretty boring.
14:08 November 18, 2012 by roundabout321
After all the education they go through and all the money advertisers make, nevermind the freebies they can live on.....it just makes you wonder... how does it happen that they cannot make a better advert than a me or you.
16:28 November 18, 2012 by wakeupdummy
@ dizzymoe33 you really are a sexist waste of space. Do run along now dear, my butt needs wiping.
Today's headlines
Elections 2014
Social Democrats win Swedish election
Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven. Photo: TT

Social Democrats win Swedish election

Sweden's Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt stepped down late on Sunday night as Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven was poised to take over and the far right Sweden Democrats made historic gains. READ  

Elections 2014
ELECTIONS BLOG: Updates and analysis
Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven. Photo: TT

ELECTIONS BLOG: Updates and analysis

The Local blogged live throughout Sunday night as our reporters watched Reinfeldt resign as prime minister, Löfven declare he was ready to lead the red-greens and the Sweden Democrats celebrate becoming Sweden's third largest party. READ  

Interview
Greens ready to join new government
Green Party co-leader Gustav Fridolin. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Greens ready to join new government

While the Green Party did not become Sweden's third political force as it hoped, it is set to govern alongside new prime minister Stefan Löfven. The Local spoke with Gustav Fridolin, one of the party's two co-leaders. READ  

Behind the scenes: Election night 2014
Is the the Alliance's last photo op as Sweden's government? Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Behind the scenes: Election night 2014

The Local reported live from the main parties' election events on Sunday night. Our reporters shared their insights ahead of the results. READ  

Elections 2014
Sweden votes in tight election battle
People across Sweden are voting on Sunday. Photo: TT

Sweden votes in tight election battle

UPDATED: Sweden is expected to vote the centre-left Social Democrats back into power in general elections on Sunday, while the anti-immigration nationalist right is likely to make historic gains. READ  

Schyman shares stage with 'feminist' Pharell
Photo: Cissy Avrin

Schyman shares stage with 'feminist' Pharell

Feminist Initiative spokeswoman Gudrun Schyman grabbed the headlines late Saturday night when she joined US superstar Pharell Williams on stage during his worldwide hit "Happy". READ  

Toddler found 'frozen but alive' after forest search
Photo: TT

Toddler found 'frozen but alive' after forest search

A two-year-old boy who disappeared near Hedemora in central Sweden on Friday was found alive near his grandparents' home on Saturday morning ending an overnight search involving 1,000 people. READ  

Ikea offices raided by Russian investigators
Ikea Russia head Per Kaufmann outside a store in Moscow. Photo: TT

Ikea offices raided by Russian investigators

Russian investigators on Friday searched offices belonging to an Ikea subsidiary on the outskirts of Moscow, a spokeswoman for the Swedish group said, adding it was cooperating with the authorities. READ  

Elections 2014
Feminists close in on kingmaker role
Fi spokesperson Gudrun Schyman at a 'home party' on Friday evening. Photo: TT

Feminists close in on kingmaker role

With the Swedish election only a day away, the Feminist Initiative is only 0.1 percentage point shy of claiming seats in the parliament and depriving the Sweden Democrats of their kingmaker role. READ  

Elections 2014
Sweden Democrats head hit by gambling scandal
Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Sweden Democrats head hit by gambling scandal

UPDATED: The nationalist Sweden Democrats were dealt two more blows on Friday as party leader Jimmie Åkesson was revealed to have a high-stakes gambling habit and footage was leaked of party members secretly filming foreigners. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
People-watching September 13th
Politics
Five possible election outcomes
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Politics
Sweden elections: Who's who?
Gallery
People-watching September 11th
Blog updates

12 September

EU sanctions: necessary, effective and timely (The Diplomatic Dispatch) »

"Regular readers of this blog know I’ve written about the Russia-Ukraine crisis here. Today I’ve chosen to share an article by the UK Minister for Europe, David Lidington, with my readers: This week the European Union imposed further sanctions on Russia. This decision followed months of destabilisation of Ukraine by Russia, and months of political..." READ »

 

12 September

Editor’s blog (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, With the Swedish election just days away, we’ve spent the week bringing you the latest headlines from the final stages of the campaign. Polls suggest that the gap between the ruling Alliance parties and the Social Democrat-led opposition is narrowing, but the result is far from certain. We’ve put together a list of five possible..." READ »

 
 
 
Lifestyle
What's on in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Gallery
Property of the week - Hornstull, Stockholm
Analysis
Five differences between the UK and Sweden
Welshman Jonny Luck is now a chef in Sweden
Society
How I opened my own restaurant in Sweden's Malmö
Sponsored Article
Stockholm tech fest: relive the magic
Gallery
People-watching September 8th
Photo: TT
Politics
Feminists fight for first seats
Politics
Immigration cut push from Sweden Democrats
Sheryl Sandberg says women have "low expectations"
Tech
Facebook exec talks women's limits in Swedish business
Politics
Left Party calls for justice and equality
Politics
Green Party wants 'better world' for kids
Lifestyle
The five best Swedish songs of the month
Sponsored Article
Introducing… Insurance in Stockholm
National
Huge clear up underway after Skåne floods
Politics
Sweden's Alliance reveals full manifesto
Tech
Sweden's highest peak to lose title next year
Politics
How immigration became a key election issue
Society
Brit's life in Sweden becomes BBC radio show
Gallery
People-watching August 27
Gallery
Top ten false friends in Swedish
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

847
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN