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CCFC to Nick and Burger King: SpongeBob and Sexualization Don’t Mix

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
This is a press release intended for release, so it's OK to post here:
For Immediate Release
Quote:
The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (CCFC) has launched a letter-writing campaign demanding that Nickelodeon and Burger King immediately pull a new, highly sexualized, television ad for SpongeBob SquarePants Kids Meals. The ad, viewable above, features The King singing a remix of Sir Mix-A-Lot’s 1990’s hit song, "Baby Got Back” with the new lyrics, “I like square butts and I cannot lie.” The ad shows images of The King singing in front of women shaking their behinds for the camera intercut with images of SpongeBob dancing along

“It’s bad enough when companies use a beloved media character like SpongeBob to promote junk food to children, but it’s utterly reprehensible when that character simultaneously promotes objectified, sexualized images of women,” said CCFC director Dr. Susan Linn, a psychologist at the Judge Baker Children's Center.

At one point during the ad, The King even measures the behind of one of the woman who has stuffed a phonebook under her dress. After the King informs children about the free SpongeBob toy they get with the purchase of a Burger King Kids Meal, the ad ends with Sir Mix-A-Lot—lounging on a couch with two female admirers—saying, “Booty is booty.” The ad ran during the NCAA men’s basketball championship and other programming last night.

“No parent watching a major sporting event with their children should have to worry about being assaulted by sexualized imagery,” said Joe Kelly of TheDadMan.com, a CCFC Steering Committee Member. “Featuring SpongeBob in an ad like this is a new low. Parents who hope to instill values in their children like respect for women would do well to steer clear of Burger King and Bikini Bottom.”

Added Dr. Linn: “Cartoon characters play a powerful role in the lives of young audiences. That Burger King and Nickelodeon would sell Kids Meals by associating a beloved, male character like SpongeBob with lechery shows how little either company cares about the wellbeing of the children they target.”

The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood is a national coalition of health care professionals, educators, advocacy groups and concerned parents who counter the harmful effects of marketing to children through action, advocacy, education, research, and collaboration. CCFC is headquartered at the Judge Baker Children's Center in Boston. www.commercialfreechildhood.org/.
You can see the commercial and get more information here:
http://www.commercialfreechildhood.o...urgerking.html

This is the link to take action:
http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o...aign_KEY=27008
post #2 of 33
Signed it! How absolutely repugnant!! :
post #3 of 33
Done... Gross
post #4 of 33
I received the e-mail on Tuesday. in my 6th grade Honor's Language Arts class we spent yesterday discussing it from various views. We looked up the original lyrics to "Baby Got Back" and I read them to my students. We looked at the way that the songs vulgar lyrics talk about explict sex acts, the objectification of women, and racial insults. We discussed the sexualization of women and the idea of using sex to sell toys and food to children.

The students were quite angry when we found a statement from Burger King assuring "Marketing Daily" that they would only show this commercial during programing geard towards adults because they have seen it on as early as 4:00 and even said that it aired during the Charlie Brown Easter Special!

Today my students all wrote letters to Burger King expressing their disappointment and urging them not to use sex to sell to children. They were very well written letters, and I encouraged them to be honest. Some of them said that while they thought it was very funny, they also found it innappropriate for kids their age, and were shocked to think of even younger kids seeig it. They came up with alternative ideas to make the ad better and suggested them to BK. I am very proud to send these 18 letters off to Burger King Corporate Headquarters.
post #5 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by mommyto3girls View Post
I received the e-mail on Tuesday. in my 6th grade Honor's Language Arts class we spent yesterday discussing it from various views. We looked up the original lyrics to "Baby Got Back" and I read them to my students. We looked at the way that the songs vulgar lyrics talk about explict sex acts, the objectification of women, and racial insults. We discussed the sexualization of women and the idea of using sex to sell toys and food to children.

The students were quite angry when we found a statement from Burger King assuring "Marketing Daily" that they would only show this commercial during programing geard towards adults because they have seen it on as early as 4:00 and even said that it aired during the Charlie Brown Easter Special!

Today my students all wrote letters to Burger King expressing their disappointment and urging them not to use sex to sell to children. They were very well written letters, and I encouraged them to be honest. Some of them said that while they thought it was very funny, they also found it innappropriate for kids their age, and were shocked to think of even younger kids seeig it. They came up with alternative ideas to make the ad better and suggested them to BK. I am very proud to send these 18 letters off to Burger King Corporate Headquarters.
This is so amazing! More teacher like you are so needed these days! Hooray!
My boys saw the ad when I recieved the email notification. We all had a laugh about it. We had come across the original months back and had laughed and then had a more serious discussion about it. We watch a lot of documetaries on being media savvy, as well as adbusters, so my oldest especially is well aware of media tactics. I found that song to be extremely silly and funny when it first came out( i was in elementary school)... kids who like potty humor and being shocked will still find it humerous. I thought that the ad was creative.The main issue ,in my opinion, is still the fact that these fast food companies are marketing directly to children using familiar characters. Kids see so much sex these days and are pretty savvy... that is a whole other issue that would need an entire overhaul of society in order to be tackled.
Good opportunity to talk to your kids about it . I use these things as an opportunity to help my kids understand the issues and learn to think critically . These issues are so widespread that involving our kiddos seems to be the best way to tackle the problem. I love to see teachers doing this!
post #6 of 33
Thank You! You actually made me cry. We have our stupid State Assessment Tests coming up in 2 weeks. Spring break starts tomorrow, which means we have 5 school days until the tests. It has been crazy with all of the junk we are expected to do in the weeks before the test to cram inormation into the kids. Its not the way i want to teach, nor the way for the kids to really learn, but it does bump the test scores so we have to do it. I really went out on a limb taking two days off of "test prep" but my personal mission statement that I send home is that in addition to the required state standards I will help my students become socially conscious members of society. I just could not let this opportunity go by without addressing it with my kids. I am so glad that i did. I teach in a large Urban district (25,000 students) and the majority of our students come from low-socio-economic families. I can not begin to tell you how proud i was of the mature way that this topic was discussed by my students.

And persuasive writing IS a State Standard, so I can more than justify it if needed. I just hope that when they leave me at the end of the year they will continue to question and challenge many of the topics we have discussed.
post #7 of 33
Sent. That's repulsive.
post #8 of 33
Sent! Thank you!

mrs B
post #9 of 33
signed. thank you for bringing this to our attention.
post #10 of 33
I thought the commercial was funny, but it is very inappropriate for young children.
post #11 of 33
FWIW, I spent an insane amount of time on hold waiting for the BK consumer affairs line because I wanted to personally SAY how offensive and degrading I found that add. I know it probably won't mean much, but at least i said it.
post #12 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by mommyto3girls View Post
The students were quite angry when we found a statement from Burger King assuring "Marketing Daily" that they would only show this commercial during programing geard towards adults because they have seen it on as early as 4:00 and even said that it aired during the Charlie Brown Easter Special!
Yeah, I saw the commercial while watching tv with my parents this morning around, oh, noon... (It's Saturday. What else are most kids doing on Saturday?)

I've also seen it on a variety of channels...not just the ones that you would think are for "adults"


Ugh, it's repulsive.... and not even in a creative way! (I'm not saying it's okay to be repulsive if you're creative...)
post #13 of 33
I've been meaning to call them all week- thanks for the reminder. I saw the ad on this past Tuesday *morning*, during the Max & Ruby show! So much for them supposedly aiming it at adults.
post #14 of 33
Sent the email and thank you for posting this. We never watch commercials so we would have never known. Someone at BK made a really bad decision.
post #15 of 33
Just saw the ad on TV. I'm disturbed. :
post #16 of 33
The whole wake up with the King campaign creeps my oldest child out too.

I wish I had seen the square-butt ad before we ate there on Sunday. (yeah nice Easter dinner).

When we saw the commercial I just told the kids to check themselves for squareness.
post #17 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Equuskia View Post
I thought the commercial was funny, but it is very inappropriate for young children.
Yup.
post #18 of 33
I saw it on youtube and thought it was hilarious.

For adults. Not kids. Period.

And I let them know that
post #19 of 33
OH had told me about it and I thought it was ridiculous. Last night, he woke me up when it was on and I couldn't believe what I was looking at! IT was absolutely disgusting! Its brainwashing is what it is!

Signed. *barf*
post #20 of 33
We saw it during a baseball game on Easter Sunday.

I was HORRIFIED



...that burger king mascot scares me a little. Am I the only person that finds it really creepy??





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