No Comment: “Even Your Wife Can Turn on the DVD!”

Finally, someone has devised a way for women to turn on the DVD! Thanks, AudioOne, for making a product so simple even a woman can use it!

On first blush, this electronics ad, submitted by Ms. reader Caroline in Lexington, SC, seems to be a real throwback to advertising of the 1950’s. Unfortunately, we may not have to reach so far back to find other examples like this one–AudioOne’s ad is eerily reminiscent of a recent subway poster. That one, thankfully, was tactfully defaced, but what could be next?

As a small business owner who was irked by this sexist and heteronormative ad, Ms. reader Caroline acted immediately and pulled her own company’s advertising dollars from the publication that printed this.

But we’ve got to keep up the pressure on AudioOne. Sign the petition below, and help Ms. and Caroline tell this company that their advertising is neither clever nor acceptable. Sexism doesn’t sell!


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AudioOne ad from the April 2011 issue of Lexington Life Magazine.


  1. "turn on the dvd"

    i personally always have trouble turning on the vhs

    there is no switch just magnetic tape and black plastic

  2. I used to work in tech support at Stream International. One of our clients was a cable Internet provider. I can't tell you how many times I'd get a call from a wife because her Internet access was down, and the procedure for that is very simple, and I'd go to walk her through it, and she'd go, "Noooo… I better wait til my husband comes home." In 1999-2000 mind you, not back in the fifties (well, obviously). And it's not that women are *incapable* of this–I was a woman working in tech support! You'd think they'd clue! And of course I didn't have time to figure out how to ask tactfully, "So, have you been convinced you are technologically inept since childhood, or did your husband drill that idea into you?" Because I'd get guys like that too, who didn't know their butts from a hole in the ground technologically, but they'd bluff it and try to work their way through the problem anyway, and usually it turned out OK. (Unless they tried telling me how to do my job and that I was wasting their time–I'd get those too, and think, "OK Mister Dudely, so WHY are you calling me again?") And it's how society encourages women to think about technological issues. And stuff like this stupid ad only amplifies all the bad messages.

  3. This is ridiculous! Signed.

  4. Actually this attitude was still common in the60's and 70's!!
    Before anyone mentions a different stereotype also….. although we may sometimes make jokes about it, being one of the older boomers, now retired, computers and other things do not scare me either. Although I also was not intimidated back in the 70's when I was one of only 2 women in the city I lived in who "drove truck" for a living!! We took freight up to 300 lbs!! A sad commentary on that time was if I went in to a factory to pick up freight, often someone would rush up to find out why a woman was invading their building!! By the time I stopped that job there were many more women in factories and there were more women driving truck!!

  5. Maggie McD says:

    Sometimes my students wonder why I still talk about women's issues – haven't we fixed all that?


    At least Audio One has given me another example I can pull up to explain why we're still talking. Good thing it's not a Youtube video, though, 'cause goodness knows I'd never be able to figure out how to play it. [rolls eyes]

  6. I live in Atlantic Canada and the men here treat me like that.

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