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'Let me shave in peace': Gillette's latest ad not the best it can get

News Desk

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta  /  Tue, January 15, 2019  /  06:42 pm

Some netizens have boycotted razor and shaving supply company Gillette following its latest ad that was uploaded online on Sunday.

On Twitter, netizens posted a photo of them tossing the brand's razors or other products into the trash while adding the hashtag #BoycottGillette.

Gillette's latest ad, titled We Believe: The Best Men Can Be, is a 1 minute 48 second commercial that confronts masculinity, bullying and harassment by showing different scenes, including boys fighting each other and a man stopping a woman from getting harassed.

“Is this the best a man can get?” said the ad’s narrator while mentioning the brand’s famous tagline. “We can’t hide from it. It has been going on far too long. We can’t laugh it off, making the same old excuses – boys will be boys.”

On a special page about the campaign, the Procter & Gamble-owned brand explained that it has “a responsibility” to promote “positive, attainable, inclusive and healthy versions of what it means to be a man”.

“From today on, we pledge to actively challenge the stereotypes and expectations of what it means to be a man,” read the statement, also noting that the company will donate US$1 million annually for the next three years to non-profit organizations that aim to “help men of all ages achieve their personal best”.

The campaign apparently does not resonate with some of the brand’s customers.

Read also: Nike's Colin Kaepernick ads spark boycott calls

Since it was published on YouTube on Sunday, the commercial video has been watched by more than 2 million viewers, liked by over 19,000 users and disliked by over 187,000 users.

The brand’s Twitter account is filled with protests from those who consider the ad offensive and a form of feminization. Some said they simply want to “shave in peace without being lectured”.

However, some netizens were found praising the ad for being “great” and “excellent”.

Pankaj Bhalla, the company's North America brand director, told CNN Business that they expected such a debate to arise. “The ad isn’t about toxic masculinity. It’s about men taking more action every day to set the best example for the next generation,” he said. (wir/kes)

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Editor's note:

Paragraph seven in this article has been corrected.

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