A massive backlash against the Midnight Productions company erupted after an advertisement was posted that contained the following ‘if you’re not up for it, don’t cum’. The poster went up on Friday and was immediately met with criticism. The University Times has an excellent article here summarising events thus far here.
Since then there have been numerous complaints placed on the ‘End Monday’s At Alchemy’s sexist and dangerous advertising’ group page, set up on Saturday by Aoife Campbell. Aoife, an occasional contributor to the Student Observer who has published on gender issues and is involved in NUIM Feminist Society, gave the Observer the following statement;
‘I left a comment on ‘Monday’s at Alchemy’s page upon reading about the advertisement after if was re-blogged on facebook from a blog called ‘umyeahok’ (Valerie Loftus’ original article is available here). I asked Monday’s at Alchemy why they felt the need to advertise their club night with a blatant reference to sexual violence, and why they felt it was ok to promote a culture in which a girl is considered ‘up for it’ upon a choice she has made such as –drinking alcohol, going to a club, or wearing a certain outfit. They blocked me from this, and all their subsequent pages.
I then set up the group ‘End Monday at Alchemy’s sexist and dangerous advertising’ in an attempt to encourage people to send in complaints to the advertising standards authority. It has received overwhelming support owing to a general feeling of anger at the arrogance of the club in thinking that purposeful references to rape and assault would be accepted, and moreover endorsed by the majority of people viewing the add – It obviously isn’t.
Upon the 150th person joining the group I received a call from Jamie White, from midnight promotions who run the club-night. He accepted that the advertisement was way out of line and suggested that the ad had not been ‘vetted’, that he appreciated my time, that nothing like this would happen again and that perhaps the group had served its purpose.
Needless to say, the group isn’t coming down. The very same club was embroiled in the ‘Knickers for liquor’ debacle (a night where if a girl handed in her under-wear to the bar she would receive a free shot) late last year, which they of course had to shut down. They didn’t learn their lesson then. Moreover, it isn’t just this particular poster, it is not just an incident of a failed quality check, the entire tone of their night-club is ‘if you are a girl and you enter this club, you are up for sex’. It really doesn’t seem to matter if the sex is consensual when the moment comes, as by entering the venue you are apparently, giving your consent. The absolute arrogance of both midnight promotions and Alchemy in thinking that people would simply digest their sexist, dangerous and repulsive adds is remarkable, well guess what we don’t –get your lawyers ready.’
The group at the time of print had almost 400 members and was growing by the hour, with many of the group’s members claiming that they had sent complaints to The Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland. Aoife along with the Student Observer and the University Times have all been contacted by staff members of Midnight Promotions asking for any screenshots or comments not to be used. The Student Observer replied asking for any comment they wished to give on the matter, that would be printed in full and have so far received no reply. We have respected their wishes not to be quoted or named.
Midnight Promotions are certainly no strangers to controversy as Aoife has mentioned their earlier ‘Knickers for Liquor’ promo at Tramco in 2011 and if their slogan is anything to go by, ‘Believe the Hype’ this issue will not be going away soon.
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