Bic Ad Deemed Sexist, Receives Understandable Backlash

Bic, the maker of pens among other things, is facing a backlash after posting an ad on Facebook andTtwitter to celebrate Women’s Day in South Africa. Critics say it’s sexist, among more colorful descriptions.

The Bic ad, which invites women to “Look like a girl, Act like a lady, Think like a man, Work like a boss,” was supposed to be empowering, according to Bic Marketing Manager, Wandile Setlhodi, as reported by

“So basically this post, it was not meant to be offensive in any way because we had intended it to be empowering and in no way did we want to offend anyone. Some of our followers actually did like it. We didn’t think that it would get this uproar; it was really a motivation for women, women who aspire to reach their dreams.”

It appears that no one on the planet actually took Bic’s ad as being empowering or motivating with backlash coming from across social media, including under the hashtag #bicfail.

Furthermore, an absolute scathing critique by Harriet Minter in the Guardian tears apart the ad line by line. As an example, what is it to think like a man?

“‘Think like a man’. Any man in particular? Perhaps the one that came up with this marketing campaign. Let’s ignore for the minute the implication that thinking like a man is somehow a superior to thinking like a woman and instead concentrate on just how insulting this is to all the men out there.”

Needless to say, Ms. Minter didn’t think too highly of this particular attempt to celebrate women and sell pens that recalls less enlightened times. Others felt Bic might want to look at their marketing strategy in the future, particularly if they ever wish to sell a pen to a single woman on earth at any point ever again.

You would think Bic would have learned its lesson after it was ridiculed for coming out with a line of pens aimed at women, delightfully called Bic for Her. Among many others, Ellen DeGeneres, as pointed out by CNN, was sarcastically pleased that finally Bic was thinking of the ladies out there.

“I know you’re thinking, ‘It’s about damn time. Where have our pens been? Can you believe this? We’ve been using man pens all these years.”

At this point, the internet is sitting in wait for Bic’s next attempt at helping to empower women through a brilliant ad strategy after this glorious failure and its understandable backlash.

[Image via Bic]