Despite the last decades’ progress, we have a ways to go before we live in an equal world: “we [women] make less money, have more difficulty accessing education and affordable healthcare and face much more violence,” writes TIME’s Jessica Roy. UN Women, a sector of the UN that spotlights women’s issues, recently released a new ad campaign that expresses just how unequally the global community treats women.
The campaign is a brainchild of Ogilvy & Mather Dubai’s Christopher Hunt and comprises a series of portraits of women from around the world, each with a screen shot of popular Google search suggestions superimposed over their mouths. Suggestions like, “Women shouldn’t... have rights” and “Women need to... be controlled” are shown as if they are literally silencing the photographs’ female subjects. Pretty powerful, yes?
The search suggestions pictured in the ads are from Dubai, the same Google searches here in the US bring up similarly upsetting suggestions. Here’s what came up when I conducted some of the searches:
Yes, some are understandable; for example, of course no one of any gender should hit another human being. But some of the search results are shocking. “Women need to... shut up” is particularly violent and disgusting. These ads should not be taken lightly; after all, Google searches offer insight into what individuals believe and consider when they are anonymous and protected from criticism. If these disturbing thoughts on gender inequality are so obviously pervasive, it’s time we give women’s issues the importance they deserve.
Images via TIME