The first 4G network in Hong Kong may sound really appealing, but the woman holding a sign basically saying she is completely dependent on a man is not! While the term tai tai may still be used from time to time, there are a lot of independent women in Hong Kong who are supporting themselves, making a living for themselves, and am pretty sure they’re also paying their own phone bill!
Based on employment statistics (see pg122 onwards) there has been a steady increase in working women over the past few years. Admittedly looking at the figures it’s obvious that there are more working men than working women. However, there is still a very steady increase which means progress. For example, women working in Finance who are educated to degree level has increased from 96,900 in 2008 to 109,900 in 2011. Despite this evidence and while there are a lot of independent women in Hong Kong, it is true that women still encounter problems as an article by the New York Times on HK women facing barriers states that:
“Social attitudes remain traditional, casting women squarely in the role of homemaker and mother — even when they are also breadwinners.”
The above article was only published last year and just one year later, we believe not much has changed. Why is this, though? After delving deeper on this topic we saw that NT Times also interviewed Helena Wong who is an expert on Gender Studies at Hong Kong Polytechnic University.
“Hong Kong is where East meets West. On the one hand, women have more opportunities than in many other countries, and there are many prominent female leaders. On the other hand, it’s a very conservative, traditional society, where gender stereotyping is common.”
This is exactly what 1010 has done and have not necessarily thought about how multi-cultural Hong Kong really is. They have gender stereotyped, but have done this as to target people with traditional values, and not so much modern values. TMB did a little social media survey and asked the question, “Do you think this is anti-feminist?” and attached the above photo. We had a variety of responses from both local and expats, male and female.
The most used word out of the comments was, “sexist”. One of the responses was simply, “poor guy”, and that wasn’t the only comment where people felt sorry for the man in the advert. This instantly makes the audience think the woman is pushy and dependent on the man. Other people in the survey felt very strongly about what message this advert is communicating and replied, “It’s offensive to women because they can and do look after themselves (and often their whole families) in spite of a male-dominated world where men tend to earn more for the same jobs”.
So to conclude… 1010, you’ve got one hell of a feminist fail here and TMB isn’t the only one who thinks this.