Recently I was watching TV and noticed that women in commericails on TV are portrayed differently then women in the TV show.  Women in commercials are shown more as a mother figure or a figure of good judgement.  An advertiser will use a women to show knowledge and experience in their commericail.  For example, an advertiser wants to use a person who has knowledge and experience in the grocery store so they choose a women.  She is shown as someone who has been in that store before and knows what she needs and what is the best brand that she should get.   She knows what she personally like best and what her family likes.  She is a representative of the family and the advertiser is using her as a representive.  The advertiser can show the audience that she is picking their product because it is the better of the products due to her knowledge of the products and her family liking the products.  However, in a tv show that same women could be portrayed as a person of comedy, someone to laugh at instead of someone to take advice from.  In a matter of seconds, she has been taking from a position of bringing laughter to the audience from her stupid actions or mistakes to a person to take advice from because of her knowledge and experience.  To me it is interesting to see how fast a women’s imagine can change.  In just a matter of seconds she can go from someone an audience would never take advice from to a person that an audience would take advice from.  One way this changes is through the environment that she is in.  On a football field a women may be the last person you listen to, but if she was in a kitchen or in a store she might be one of the first people that you take advice from.

As I am writing this I start to think of some of my own experiences.  Yes I am a guy so I might not get the whole experience but I have been in positions where I can see a women being treated different due to her sex and not her knowledge.  I have worked at a rather large hardware store for three years now.  Many of my coworkers are females and know just as much and in some areas more than I do.  However, costumers still come in to this day and treat the female worker like crap because they feeel she should not be helping them with their hardware choices when in fact she most likely knows more than anyone about that product.  There has been many times that I have helped these types of customers and have left the customer to ask my female coworker what product is better.  The gender of the employee has nothing to do with the amount of knowledge that one has about a curtain product.  Just becasue it is a hardware store doesn’t mean that only men know what is in the store and what products are better than others, but that is not the way every customer looks at it.

Matt Zangl