Thursday, October 15, 2009

Define "In Bad Taste"

Pepsi recently released an iPhone app (application) called Amp Up (Before You Score). It categorizes women into types. The user taps to flip the card and get relevant information to help him (or her, if that's how you roll) close the deal. The tips are anything from appropriate pick-up lines to a chart to judge the wealth of a married woman's husband by the size of her diamond (HA!)to stretching exercises if you are about to try to land twins (Double HA!).

The fact of the matter is... it's funny, well-designed and possibly even helpful. Okay, so I agree that the BRAG button that lets the user instantly tweet or FB their conquest is a bit much but, that is a judgment call. The loser who taps that button would be the same tasteless slob who'd tweet his victory anyway. But, I guess Pepsi doesn't need to make it easier for guys to be insensitive assholes. Maybe they could drop the BRAG button but the rest of the app is gold.

What I'd like to know is who's defining "in bad taste" these days? It seems like anything goes. Apparently 36% of us tweet after sex (and that's only counting those who admit it!). One look at and you'll see a whole lot worse than a guy tweeting that he just landed a smoking hot foreign exchange student. If you've ever sent or received a Someecards you'd know that just about any topic is fair game. For goodness sakes, there's a site called Poop Tweet and I'm sure you don't have to visit to figure out what that site is populated with.

With today's net-culture, who's looking at the Pepsi App and saying "WELL! I NEVER!" as she drinks from her silver tea cup with her pinkie held high. C'mon. Cut Pepsi some slack.

I think we are all grown-ups here (at least I hope so). If you don't like the app, don't download it. If you don't like the Tweeter, don't follow. If you don't like the blog, don't read it. Except mine. You should TOTALLY keep reading mine. But you like mine, right? And I'm never offensive so I won't worry.


  1. The problem with this app is that it depicts women in stereotypical categories, with the slogan "collect them all" (women are human beings, not Pokemon). It suggests they aren't people, but rather an object of conquest, to be tossed aside as soon as you get what you from her. "If you don't like it, don't use it" doesn't work because this isn't just a Pepsi app, it's everywhere, everyday. Pepsi only provides it in a more tangible form.

  2. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but somehow I can't imagine this much hubbub over the app designed for women to pick-up guys. Better yet an app that dumps men into different categories of dumb or fixable with tips on how to mold this mindless mass of man into something you can use. Somehow I think everyone would find that funny. Double-standard.

  3. Same Anon here-

    Talk about missing the point.

    This app actually should offend you as is because it implies that all men are sex-crazed neanderthals who can only think with their penis, and need some stupid gadget to feed them lame one-liners because they're incapable of holding a meaningful conversation.

    That said, there probably wouldn't be as much hubub because men haven't been subjected to thousands of years of of being treated like... well basically exactly like this. Women are people too, not just a warm place to stick your wang. It's really not a double-standard, all we want is to be treated equally.

    "Better yet an app that dumps men into different categoriesof dumb or fixable with with tips on how to mold this mindless mass of man into something you can use." This too is sexist, against men and against women. Not all women are out to change you (I've never tried this myself or seen any of my friends do it). Guys aren't a weekend DIY fixer up. And really if someone, man or woman, sees you like that, then you're better off ditching them for someone who likes you for who you are.

    I get that it's supposed to be joke, but it's a very bad, unfunny one. Too many guys are going to see this and say, "Haha, it's funny 'cause it's true!" when really its not. It's just another excuse to treat women like crap.

    Men are men, women are women, and BOTH are people; they deserve to be treated as such.

  4. Anon.
    Thanks for playing.

    As I said, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I think I (as all women) can manage to decide on my own what "should" and "should not" offend me, just as I can decide for myself whether I "should" or "should not" to fall for a lame pick up line or hook up with a random guy in a bar in the first place for that matter.

    A woman will only be treated like a cast-off and a one-night stand if she allows herself to be. Same goes for a guy.

    You nailed it when you said "if someone, man or woman, sees you like that, then you're better off ditching them for someone who likes you for who you are." That's the key. Self-esteem. The app is a GAG. Only losers with low self-esteem will actually USE THIS as more than a conversation piece and only women with low self-esteem would let them self be used by a guy with a canned pick-up line.

    Thanks for the feedback either way. It makes for good reading.

  5. Same anon again.

    You're right, bad phrasing on my part. If you're not offended by it, that's fine. I would be, but that's me (I think I should point out too: I mean for the tone of what I'm writing to be calm. I'm not attempting sarcasm, please don't read it that way).

    As for the app, it's stupid and offensive as is, but it's the "brag" part that really gets me (like you mentioned in the original post). What's to stop the moron that downloads it from taking a picture of his "conquest" and adding a blurb of what they did and her phone number? That part of the app could devolve into dangerous territory very quickly. The "brag" function takes a bad joke too far.

    Stereotyping typically offends people, which is why its viewed as bad. This is stereotyping. That's why most people think its a joke in poor taste.