Midnight Promotions in Sexist Controversy

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.

Alchemy promo poster that has caused controversy

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.

Thobias Inkblot

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11 thoughts on “Midnight Promotions in Sexist Controversy

  1. Guys,

    A word of advice, you may be students etc, you have not removed names from the university article, they are students, when superiors in trinity get wind of this, I would presume they will not be happy, the article should have been approved by them, you could get yourselves into a fairly serious legal case naming people in these articles. The article above would indicate that all names have been removed when in fact they haven’t.

    Trinity College itself could be in a lot of trouble for allowing this article to be published.

    This girl is a member of NUIM Feminist Society, so it is any wonder she in particular is the driving force behind this. I am not taking any sides on this issue, and have a neutral stance.

    Before you go on rampages like this students, – look at the legality of what you are doing.

    • Just to clarify very quickly John, we have no association whatsoever with the University times, nor their article on this issue, nor Trinity College in general, we just linked their article. The responsibility would obviously be on them to remove the names, but they have gotten independent legal advice that suggests they are in no danger by leaving any names in, but either way, it has nothing to do with us.

      -Dave

    • I wrote the article. We sought legal advice and we’re absolutely fine. (In the case of naming those people, they posted on an ‘open group’ and have no legal recourse.)

      We’re also editorially independent – so, we wouldn’t take down an article on the request of Trinity College’s authorities.

      We won’t be bullied by legal threats into not publishing articles.

    • Hi John,

      Few quick points. Reiterating Dave’s earlier reply, We’re not the University Times, nor have any affiliation. Wealso have nothing to do with TCD as we are mostly based out of Maynooth.

      When we put the post together, we linked all relevant material already reporting on the story. We made it especially clear to not involve any names to do with Midnight Promotions or the club in our article for the very reason you are saying. However, as Ronan has said, it’s on the internet and therefore is public domain. A very important reason why people should always think before they say something on the internet (but that’s another issue).

      In relation to your comment on Aoife only being concerned with this issue as she is in the FemSoc. What difference does that make? If we said she was in the Literary & Debating Soc would you say she was only doing this for the argument. The idea that comes from your statement is that all feminists are crazy troublemakers. There are more than enough males who we have talked to in relation to this and who completely agree with the sentiment of the campaign, even those who wouldn’t expressively regard themselves as feminists.

      If you would like to write an article telling Aoife and co why they’re wrong, feel free to do so. I would recommend that some research and reflection is done first and not just a reactionary rant.

      • I would also recommend that you do some research ‘before you go on a rampage’, as to what exactly The Student Observer is and how it is a separate news entity from the one you have cited.

        regards,
        Shane

  2. Pingback: Midnight Promotions Issue Apology | The Student Observer

  3. Pingback: “I Don’t Mean To Nitpick, But Women’s Issues Still Matter” | The Student Observer

  4. Pingback: Why I Quit Writing For College Times « embarrassingmoment

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