Ryanair's Ad and Calendar
Complaints have been rolling in over Ryanair's latest ad showing an attractive woman in a bikini advertising their charity calendar, 'The Girls of Ryanair Charity Calendar' (this year will be the fourth consecutive calendar).
Update (15/02/12) - they were banned. Unbelievable.
The online campaign, started by Ghada, herself a member of Ryanair cabin crew, has so far gathered about 8,500 signatures, and states, "Stop selling your staff. I'm a member of an airline Cabin Crew and what's more I love my job. My work colleagues, many of whom are male, work hard with me to ensure the safety of our passengers. Safety is our number one priority, not the brand of our underwear."
Of course the ASA have been brought into it. They say they have received 10 complaints from members of the public who have said that the ads are 'sexist and objectify women, particularly female cabin crew', and that the ads are 'offensive and unsuitable for display in a national newspaper'. Let's not discuss the Page 3 girls then.
As much as I hate Ryanair (and I really, really do), I have to admit that this doesn't bother me. I presume Michael O'Leary didn't force anyone to take their clothes off, and after all, it's a charity calendar. This year, they hope to raise £85,000, which would bring the total raised by Ryanair’s cabin crew to £430,000. Quite a nice figure really.
So what exactly are all those people annoyed about? Objectifying women? Even if it was their call? What would they say if the men stripped off? What would they say if the women were less sexy? Perhaps dear Ghada didn't read the ad properly and see the 'Buy the 2012 cabin crew charity calendar on Ryanair.com!'?
What can I say? I'm a woman, and I don't care. If the crew wanted to do it, and it's for charity, then let it go, Ghada. Let it go.