Friday, February 17, 2012

Pinterest pet peeves

Sometimes the comments on Pinterest can be so obnoxious. The site often seems overrun with elitist. I don't care if you think all fast food is the devil. I don't care if you think the model should go eat a cheeseburger. And I don't care that you think girls shouldn't be allowed to play with pink toys. Live your own life, and I'll live mine, thank you.

Lord. To elaborate on my top three Pinterest pet peeves:

1) People who feel the need to reply to a food photo nitpicking every ingredient in the food, why it is bad for you, and why they are a better person because they don't eat it.

2) People who think it is acceptable to put down a model for being "too" skinny. You look like just as big of a jerk as someone who thinks it is okay to tell an overweight stranger to lose weight.

3) People complaining because a toy company made a "girl" version of a toy. Your daughter may not prefer pink Legos to the traditional primary colors but some girls do. Your daughter may not prefer plastic ballerinas to plastic army men, but some girls do. Toy gender stereotypes do not exist because of options, they exist when parents don't give their children an option.

4 comments:

  1. I have to agree that Pinterest rarely seems like the place for people to insert these opinions. As a nutritionist, I may not dig on fast food -- so you know what I do when I don't dig on somebody's stream of Big Mac pictures? I just unsubscribe! Sheesh, who thinks responding with acid to something a person placed on a virtual bulletin board is going to change their mind? Folks are just itching for a fight, I guess.

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  2. Hmm, okay I know I already commented, but now you've got my gears turning! Seeing as how this discussion is not on Pinterest, maybe it's okay for me to say how your third point has SO been on my mind lately! I'm REALLY consternated about gender marketing to small children.

    I have no problem acknowledging that many of my step-daughter's preferences are born out of her own personality. But I also have no problem acknowledging that many of her desires are born out of marketing. I may not think that a moderate dose of pink is going to hurt anyone, but it also pisses me off to think about massive corporations spending millions of dollars on ad campaigns that are aimed directly at (and designed to manipulate the minds of) four year olds.

    I guess I shouldn't be surprised that corporations put money above a little thoughtfulness about manipulating human beings at an explosively formative moment in thir psychological and neurological development. Clearly it's the parents' job to shield their kid from the onslaught of advertising and marketing that tells them who to be and what to want. But it still pisses me off. Grown ups have enough trouble differentiating between what they want and what they've been told by a torrent of consumer advertising that they want.

    All that being said, just about anything is fine with moderation, and many girls are (spoiler alert) naturally girly. It's such a tough line to walk! Maybe that's why people get pissy about it on pinterest? All that confusing pressure to keep kids balanced in an unbalanced world? I don't know, it's hard to resist pink Legos.

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    Replies
    1. I totally agree that is a problem with marketing. Have you ever read anything by Martin Linstrom? While he doesn't really talk about the gender problems with marketing, I think you would love his books. He talks a lot about the psychology of marketing, and some of the very shady aspects of it. If you click the photo of (one of) his book here, you can read the introduction to see if it would be something you think you would enjoy enough to check out from the library or buy: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/buyology-martin-lindstrom/1012559228?ean=9780385523899&itm=2&usri=martin+lindstrom

      My main problem with the Pinterest critiquing issue is that people love to over-analyze anything people share, and I don't think Pinterest is the place for it.

      The problem I have with the toy color issue in general is that people seem to confuse what the real problem is... it isn't that "boy" toys are made in "girl" colors to make them more appealable to girls; the problem is that gender roles are so rigidly ingrained in society that girls are typically going to gravitate towards pink toys, and most parents aren't as likely to buy their daughters toys society deems masculine.

      I once babysat a boy and girl whose father told me he didn't want his son to play with Barbies (if I remember correctly, the issue was brought up because I let his son play with Barbies). I feel that a major reason gender roles are so rigid is because homophobia is incredibly rampant and the science of sexuality is so misunderstood.

      P.S. I don't mind your comment at all, I enjoy discussing things like this (I just don't think it belongs on Pinterest).

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Let me know you are out there.