The UK just banned sexist ads. It could change the way an entire generation of girls learns to see themselves.

Commercials that use gender stereotypes likely to cause harm are now banned in the United Kingdom.

Are you beach body ready? That’s a question that you can ask yourself, but advertisements in the U.K. cannot – even if they really want you to buy their diet product.

The U.K. passed a ban on sexism in advertisements last December, and as of Friday, the ban has finally gone into place. The U.K. Advertising Standards Authority now officially forbids ads that depict gender in ways "that are likely to cause harm, or serious or widespread offense."

Advertisements influence people, and that influence goes beyond whether or not we purchase longer-lasting lip gloss or weight loss shakes. "Our evidence shows how harmful gender stereotypes in ads can contribute to inequality in society, with costs for all of us," Guy Parker, Chief Executive of the Advertising Standards Authority, said. "Put simply, we found that some portrayals in ads can, over time, play a part in limiting people's potential. It's in the interests of women and men, our economy and society that advertisers steer clear of these outdated portrayals.” This is a far cry from the “be the best possible you” messages ads like to feed us.

A 2016 report from Lloyds Banking Group examined the way women are portrayed in ads, and found that only one-third of the people shown in ads were women. Additionally, they were less likely to hold a position of power in the ads. If they were shown being in charge, the “role was often linked to seduction, beauty or motherhood.” Hopefully, we’ll start to see more women in ads that aren’t for makeup and clothes.

Some of the things that are now out of ads are:

“An ad that depicts a man with his feet up and family members creating a mess around a home while a woman is solely responsible for cleaning up the mess.”

“An ad that depicts a man or a woman failing to achieve a task specifically because of their gender e.g. a man’s inability to change nappies; a woman’s inability to park a car.”

“An ad aimed at new mums which suggests that looking attractive or keeping a home pristine is a priority over other factors such as their emotional wellbeing.”

“An ad that belittles a man for carrying out stereotypically ‘female’ roles or tasks.”

The ban impacts broadcast, online, and print advertisements. The Advertising Standards Authority will determine if an ad breaks the new rule or not on a case-by-case basis.

More and more countries are rolling out laws that prevent gender discrimination in advertisements. In Norway, sexism in advertising has been forbidden since 1978. And in 2004, Spain rolled out a law banning degrading images of women’s bodies. Belgium, France, Finland, Greece, South Africa, and India all also have restrictions when it comes to sexism in ads. Bravo!

Changing the way we present women in advertisements can help change the way we look at women in real life, and we’re here for it. The real way hair dryers and washing machines can revolutionize a woman’s life is by not talking down to her.


The Justice Department sent immigration judges a white nationalist blog post

The blog post was from an "anti-immigration hate website."

Attorney General William Barr via Wikimedia Commons

Department of Justice employees were stunned this week when the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) sent court employees a morning briefing that contained a link to a "news" item on VDare, a white nationalist website.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, VDare is an "anti-immigration hate website" that "regularly publishes articles by prominent white nationalists, race scientists and anti-Semites." The website was established in 1999 by its editor Peter Brimelow.

The morning briefing is distributed to all EOIR employees on a daily basis, including all 440 immigration judges across the U.S.

Keep Reading Show less

"Seventy percent of the Earth is covered with water, now you camp on it!" proudly declares Smithfly on the website for its new camping boat — the Shoal Tent.

Why have we waited so long for camping equipment that actually lets us sleep on the water? Because it's an awful idea, that's why.

Keep Reading Show less

We've all felt lonely at some point in our lives. It's a human experience as universal as happiness, sadness or even hunger. But there's been a growing trend of studies and other evidence suggesting that Americans, and people in general, are feeling more lonely than ever.

It's easy to blame technology and the way our increasingly online lives have further isolated us from "real" human interactions. The Internet once held seemingly limitless promise for bringing us together but seems to be doing just the opposite.

Except that's apparently not true at all. A major study from Cigna on loneliness found that feelings of isolation and loneliness are on the rise amongst Americans but the numbers are nearly identical amongst those who use social media and those who don't. Perhaps more importantly, the study found five common traits amongst those who don't feel lonely.

Keep Reading Show less

He photographed Nazi atrocities and buried the negatives. The unearthed images are unforgettable.

He risked his life to leave a "historical record of our martyrdom."

via Yad Vashem and Archive of Modern Conflict, 2007

In September 1939, the Nazis invaded Poland. By April 1940, the gates closed on the Lodz Ghetto, the second largest in the country after Warsaw.

Throughout the war, over 210,000 people would be imprisoned in Lodz.

Among those held captive was Henryk Ross. He was a Jewish sports photographer before the Nazi invasion and worked for the the ghetto's Department of Statistics during the war. As part of his official job, he took identification photos of the prisoners and propaganda shots of Lodz' textile and leather factories.

Keep Reading Show less
WITI Milwaukee

Joey Grundl, a pizza delivery driver for a Domino's Pizza in Waldo, Wisconsin, is being hailed as a hero for noticing a kidnapped woman's subtle cry for help.

The delivery man was sent to a woman's house to deliver a pie when her ex-boyfriend, Dean Hoffman, opened the door. Grundl looked over his shoulder and saw a middle-aged woman with a black eye standing behind Hoffman. She appeared to be mouthing the words: "Call the police."

"I gave him his pizza and then I noticed behind him was his girlfriend," Grundl told WITI Milwaukee. "She pointed to a black eye that was quite visible. She mouthed the words, 'Call the police.'"

Keep Reading Show less
Good News