In a new ad for Sony’s Playstation Vita, the handheld video game console – with touch-sensitive controls on the front and back – is compared to a woman with four breasts. The ad, which appears in a French magazine, encourages readers to “Touch both sides. Twice the sensation.”
The pictured woman, whose head is not visible, is clearly not real, but a digitally-created toy to be played with. Here women are not only sexualized objects we are asked to look at, but objects we should physically put our hands on. And as a result of not being able to see her face, the woman’s thoughts and feelings are also being deemed unimportant (or nonexistent). She is completely dehumanized.
It’s obvious Sony’s target demographic for this ad was young heterosexual males (which is almost always the media’s target demographic, and makes the instruction to “touch both sides” of women especially scary), unfortunately for the company other people also read French magazines and – shockingly – those people sometimes play video games too:
— Sonya (@sonyabean) November 1, 2012
Also, Sony’s marketing department might be saddened to hear that not all young heterosexual males make purchasing decisions based on how many breasts advertisers show them. True story. So my hope is, as Sonya suggests above, that sales of the already disappointing Vita will not be increasing as a result of this ad.
But just to make sure, let’s let Sony know how we feel about their desperate and degrading attempt to get our attention:
Imran is the Social Media and Communications Manager at MissRepresentation.org. Follow him on Twitter @imransiddiquee