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Stop using women as objects and props in ads, says Madonna Badger

Madonna Badger, Chief Creative Officer, Founder, Badger and Winters, asks the advertising fraternity to come together and stop objectifying women in advertisements. She asks brands and agencies to show empathy and humanity while portraying women

Madonna Badger

Women are equal but their objectification in advertisements makes them less than equal, said Madonna Badger, Chief Creative Officer, Founder, Badger and Winters.

Speaking at Goafest, Badger asked brands and agencies to come together and stop creating advertisements that put women in a negative light. Explaining how such ads do have a negative impact on the society, and especially on children, Badger called out brands involved in creating such pieces.

Badger had earlier started a campaign, #WomenNotObjects, with a mission to end objectification of women in advertising and support brands that empower women.

Showcasing a few ads that illustrated women in situations where they had no control and had no narrative, and were presented as props, Badger said, “It is okay for us to be used in advertisements but what is not okay is to be weaponised to a point where it is no longer about being a woman; it is being about being an object.”

Using women’s body parts to sexualise, or being compared to sex toys, shouldn’t be the way to represent women, irrespective of the idea behind the creation of advertisements. Ads that include the concept of plastic to visually retouch women and photoshop the body frame and skin lightening creams depict the unreal images of women, she said.

“When you are 10-12 years old, or of my age, you look at these unreal pictures of women and you want to be like them. You feel anxious and ashamed,” she added.

Badger and Winters, along with Olay, did a campaign to show the idea of women being strong opinionated and comfortable in their skin.

Asking brands, agencies and creators to show empathy towards women, she said, “People need to accept women the way they are. Brands need to understand this is not a cool thing to do. Women are sexual, artistic, whole human beings. Portray us that way. We are not objects. Show some humanity; use your empathy, heart and brain to portray us.”

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