Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign


by Guest    
8:15 am - December 13th 2011

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contribution by Laura Nelson

Hamleys Toyshop in London has changed its signage in response to a campaign against categorisation of toys by gender and sexist stereotypes.

In signs all around the shop, from top to bottom, the mention of gender has been removed.

Toys are now categorised by type: for example, ‘arts and crafts’, ‘dress-up’ and ‘dolls’, without specifying whether they are for boys or girls.

Hamleys: before and after

This is great news, and a step in the right direction.

Last week I spoke to Hamleys’s PR office and sent a letter to the Chief Executive, Gudjon Reynisson. I also called up the PR office at Landsbanki, the nationalised Icelandic bank that controls Hamleys. Iceland is very progressive on equal gender rights and opportunities; they rightly took notice.

The phone calls followed a post I wrote on my blog in October, in which I outlined my concern that the layout at Hamleys contributed to gender stereotypes and inequality.

The blog-post was also published on Liberal Conspiracy. They resulted in lots of comments, tweets and discussions, and the topic resonated with many people – parents, feminists, journalists, scientists.

There has also been interest from Icelandic journalists and feminists, who have been adding to the pressure of this campaign. I am very grateful for all who have supported this campaign – it’s been a collective effort. A summary of what I wrote to Hamleys.

The story is also reported in the Times and FT today.

Hamleys have responded today by saying they were planning to change the signs anyway. But such a radical, sudden change so near to Christmas is unlikely to be due to anything other than campaign pressure.

The pressure will now continue to make sure they don’t go back on their decision, and allow children regardless of gender to enjoy toys depending on their interests.


Laura Nelson, aka ‘Delilah’, is a writer, blogger and a campaigner for equality, and has a background in neuroscience. She blogs here and tweets from here.

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Reader comments


1. Jennifer Johnson

This is great; now thick parents everywhere who didn’t buy a toy because of the sign won’t have to think for themselves again.

Woohoo

Now go get John Lewis down the road – I hear they have men’s and women’s clothes on different floors – sexist bastards.

What a pathetic campaign! I can only assume global poverty, hunger and war have been defeated, only nobody in their right minds would ignore them because a toy shop branded toys by which gender is more likely to play with them.

Boys and girls like different things. Get over it.

Never mind the signage, it is the toys themselves which are stereotypical. Simply moving them around in the shop doesn’t change the fact that boys have toy guns and cars, and girls have toy Hoovers, cookers and dolls.

This does nark me a little when shopping for my daughter.

Enjoy your pyrric victory, as all you have really achieved is to make those of us who want equality laughing stocks again. No wonder people bang on about “PC gone mad”, I’m beginning to agree.

Excellent work.

I went in there last Christmas, and it made me absolutely furious when I went in there to buy my young niece some kind of sciencey present, and was told I’d find them under BOYS.

I mean, asked Hamleys, what need have little girls of knowledge and learning?

The entire decor as well. All designed to let girls know from a young age their place is in the home. Girls: Pink, sparkly, passive baby-making machines.

They may as well have had a huge sign that said “HA HA NICE TRY FEMINISTS”.

Next target, Toys R Us, I hope?

Up next – why getting unisex toilets installed in Harvey Nichols is a triumph for everyone who lives near it and can afford to shop there.

Gosh, well done, what a marvellous victory on such an important subject. Perhaps you do the middle east next?

Well that’s the world sorted then – everyone can go home.

Well congratulations on this victory, small step though it is. (Ignore the “well it ain’t exactly world hunger you’ve solved” crowd, its the little issues that need defenders, the big issues already have loads of people plugging away at them)

Chris: “No wonder people bang on about “PC gone mad”, I’m beginning to agree.”

The only ones I see moaning and being offended here in the comments are those offended that toys aren’t labelled as being boys or girls anymore.

If you want equality as you say you do, isn’t it problematic that from a young age, girls are encouraged not to play with the same things that boys play with? I’ve often thought that trying to tackle the problems in the adult would is dealing with symptoms far too late.

As for all the comments about there being more important things to worry about – by that logic, we should only ever worry about the Most Important Thing In The World Ever. Utterly absurd, of course. And what are you people doing commenting here at all? Don’t you know there are more important things to worry about, than an article you dislike? Get over it.

To all the people who claim this is but a detraction from other “more important” victories, I wholeheartedly disagree.

It might be a small potato but it is an issue nonetheless, and it is a victory too. Why attack it? No, it won’t stop world hunger, or end global conflicts, but just because those things exist it doesn’t mean we should ignore everything else.

And sometimes, it is the small victories that amass and provide the tipping point for larger issues. Equality for women in the third world will not happen until there is true equality here. And that will not happen while blatantly sexist practices continue up and down pretty much every country in the developed world.

Yes, this is a small step. But it is a step all the same, and I am glad it has happened.

13. Richard Gadsden

What you need to persuade them to do next is to physically move the toys around – because the third and fifth floors still have the same toys on; they just aren’t labelled “boys” and “girls”.

14. the a&e charge nurse

Will the campaign switch to every other toy shop in London, or is poor old Hamleys a special case?

Not only that – perceived sexism goes far beyond signage, surely many of the toys conform to unhealthy stereotypes and should be campaigned against as well?

Even ‘action man’ is taking the piss out of gays nowadays – shocking?
http://www.sandaigprimary.co.uk/classes/primary_one_03_04/toyimages/greig.jpg

15. Chaise Guevara

@ 13

“What you need to persuade them to do next is to physically move the toys around – because the third and fifth floors still have the same toys on; they just aren’t labelled “boys” and “girls”.”

And this is a problem why, exactly?

16. carlos barlos

Dah bless, middle class lefties are soooooo sweet, bless their little cotton socks. Don’t worry, the rest of those on the left like myself still love you, with your wacky campaigns and that. Kudos to you LC! Well done…and I really mean it.

17. Chaise Guevara

@ 4 Lee

“Never mind the signage, it is the toys themselves which are stereotypical.”

I’m not sure how a toy gun or doll can be “stereotypical”. The packaging or the marketing can be, and so can the attitudes of the parents buying the toys. But if, for argument’s sake, 90% of kids who want toy guns are boys, and 90% of kids who want dolls are girls, what exactly would you want to see done about this alleged stereotyping? And how would you make a toy gun non-stereotypical?

18. flyingrodent

Well, I’ll say this just once, so as not to labour the point. I’ve spent a lot of time telling anyone who will listen that the British left is not entirely composed of middle class greenies whose lives are entirely insulated from the realities of those of the great majority of citizens. It’s only writing, of course, and not campaigning or sleeping rough or getting shot through the leg, but I do take a wee bit of pride in it and hope some small number of people get the message.

So when I see campaigns to hector exclusive London department stores into making concessions over issues that only a tiny fraction of the populace would even consider vaguely problematic, let alone outrageous… Well, I feel that it’s not helping me out in achieving my aim here. In fact, it’s actively detrimental.

I don’t expect everyone to do what I wish they would and obviously, what people do in their spare time is no concern of mine. Go mental – campaign against whoever on whatever causes seem fit to you. What I will say is that – In My Humble Opinion – this kind of thing is highly counterproductive.

I realise that many will disagree and think that this is a blow for freedom, but celebrating this kind of victory (especially in the “how will women in the third world ever be free if little Jemima has to visit two different rooms in an upmarket toy store to buy her My First Microscope – while unemployment is in the millions, no less) makes everyone associated with the site look like a bit of a posh twat. Certainly, I’d be laughing like a drain if it was Conservative Home or HP Sauce running this.

19. Chaise Guevara

@ 18 flying rodent

It’s tricky. On the one hand, I should put my cards on the table and I admit that I find this sorta funny. I also see why people such as yourself, campaigning on more serious issues, might see it as counterproductive. Targeting a single swanky shop instead of pushing for industry-wide change doesn’t help either.

On the OTHER hand, I can see why it upsets people that stores feel they can dictate which toys are appropriate for children of each gender. It could even have a notable effect on some children who are are dissuaded from pursuing a hobby that could have educational benefits (girls discouraged from getting science kits, for example). And it’s easier to change the ways of a single flagship target than the whole toys retail sector.

Part of me does also wonder about the implication that we should also get rid of male-only and female-only clothes shops, male and female sections in mixed clothes shops, men’s barbers and ladies’ salons, genderised public toilets, etc etc, and how many people would care about the political point made given that it would be such a massive pain in the arse.

20. the a&e charge nurse

[13] “What you need to persuade them to do next is to physically move the toys around – because the third and fifth floors still have the same toys on; they just aren’t labelled “boys” and “girls” – wouldn’t it make far children happier if instead of fretting over signage, adults fretted over the price – surely a 20% reduction in PRICES would represent a much bigger victory than spending a few extra nanoseconds trying to figure out which floor the dolls house or racing track is on.

Don’t forget – these preconceptions are deeply rooted in a boy or girls brain long before they ever get to Regent Street.

21. carlos barlos

@18 yeah! What he said…but still, its kind of sweet though in a weird liberal middle class way. I find it kind of cute. Its a different world up there.

@flyingrodent

Why is this sort of thing counter-productive? You didn’t say.

Falco @ 8

Okay, I will bite.

Why bother? This is clearly not an issue you are in the slightest bit interested in. That is fine, I have no intention of ever visiting Hamely’s and I am not particularly interested in this thread either to be honest. What I do find interesting is that the Tory scum feel the need to post to tell us they are not interested in a subject?

Look, I get the concept that you people have an overwhelming desire to be obnoxious, but surely there are enough bloggs, message boards and online newspaper comments pages for you to pour bile into.

Are you seriously cannot find space to attack the weak and disabled people, today? Are you suggesting that of all the Tory websites in cyberspace there is not one single thread castigating someone with a terminal illness? Or some sad little bigot having a go at a school for Down’s syndrome who use taxpayer’s money hire a minibus to take children to a pantomime or whatever? Are you telling me that the entire Tory vermin has been struck down by a bout of compassion? You cannot find another sociopath in the entire cyberspace to moan with?

You are ‘forced’ to come to a Left Wing site and piss on someone else’s thread about a subject you care not a jot about? What are you getting from that? What is missing from your sad little life that you feel the need to go out of your way to find people that you disagree with? The whole point of the internet is that we can communicate with people who we share interests with. What is it with you Right Wing cunts that you appear to need to go out of your way to find people you disagree with?

Is it the same on websites for the scum? Are there dozens of humans on Tory websites, posting about they find subjects boring?

24. the a&e charge nurse

Just referred back to LN’s first LC post on Hamleygate – I must admit it provoked another chuckle when I read the words ‘gender apartheid’ – what an utterly ridiculous phrase?

I strongly suspect Laura is not a parent herself (although I might be wrong) – her logic seems to have far more in common with the wackier elements of feminist thinking rather than the needs of children?

22 – because it makes people roll their eyes and go ‘chuh’ in a way that makes it more likely that they’ll do the same when it comes to something more important.

Oh FFS.

No, what you need to do next is target the toy manufacturers themselves and stop them making different toys. Why do children need more than one toy anyway? It’s because the toy cartels use exploitative advertising to make them think they need more than one. Capitalist pigs. Down with Big Toy!

Once kids all have the exact same Grey Non-Gendered Non-Action Biomorphic Figure (available from all good identical, grey, toy sections of shops), everything will be great.

Surely we change the World one small step at a time? We fight one, seemingly insignificant, battle at a time. I have no idea if this change will have a significant effect or but if it hasn’t, what is the big deal? So Hamleys have changed their signs, I bet most of the people who are complaining wouldn’t even notice?

So who walks into Hamelys sees that none of the toys are marked ‘Boys’ and ‘Girls’ and walks out again muttering that they cannot find action man or whatever? Personally, I think most of us have got lives to get on with, so I don’t see the problem.

29. Richard Gadsden

@ 15 because you still have all the stereotypically-boys’ toys together and all the stereotypically-girls’ toys together, and the association only makes sense because one set are boys’ and the other are girls’.

For instance, you could put all the costumes together, instead of having superheroes in one place and princesses in another; you could put all the plastic hominids together, instead of having “action figures” in one place and “dolls” in another.

You’re still reinforcing the same associations and stereotypes, you’re just not hanging up signs saying so.

Tim J @ 25

because it makes people roll their eyes and go ‘chuh’ in a way that makes it more likely that they’ll do the same when it comes to something more important.

Who does that, though Tim? How many decent people do you know think like that? The only people I ever see complaining about this type of thing normally go ‘chuh’ whilst rolling their eyes would do that whenever ‘something more important’ comes along anyway.

I would like to see the worst of the Tory Party to stop acting like Nazis, but right now, I would settle for them dressing like Nazis. If you expel the scumbag who dressed up as a Nazi, I would feel that was a step in the right direction.

What exactly is the problem here? These people campaigned for something and Hamelys changed it.

Either:
1) Hamelys was going to do this anyway, in which case Laura was right all along.
2) Hamelys have changed their signage after taking Laura’s views into account, therefore Laura has helped Hamelys improve their service.

Either way, what is the problem?

31. the a&e charge nurse

Jim [28] I think Bandit 1 [27] makes a very good point – Hamleygate is presumably a minor skirmish on the road to a new world where we have the correct sort of toys, manufactured and advertised in the correct sort of way – further down the line it might be argued that children should interact with toys in the prescribed non-threatening, non-gendered manner?

My kids always loved their day out at Hamleys – do adults really need to have this sort of joyless guilt trip laid on them, especially since the campaign is aimed at a single store in one city and will make little difference to the wider presentation of toys in the market place? (which is done mainly through telly and the net)

I just dont get it. Why is seperate floors for the sexes a terrible thing?

33. Richard Gadsden

@ 31 you know that this follows on from campaigns with the Early Learning Centre and Mothercare, right?

One of the complaints is from parents who have to take their daughters into the boys’ section or sons into the girls’ section to find the toys they want. I don’t get what the “guilt trip” is that anyone is laying on here.

34. Richard Gadsden

@ Dave 32 – Well, if the toys were ones that only boys/girls could play with, then that would be fine – like adult clothing, which is physically fitted to different body shapes, such that even if it’s the right size, a man doesn’t fit correctly into clothes made for a woman. But these are toys. Is there some law against boys playing with Barbie or Hello Kitty? Some physical reason why girls can’t have toy guns or Scalextrix?

35. the a&e charge nurse

[33] “I don’t get what the “guilt trip” is that anyone is laying on here” – then perhaps you are inured to ‘gender apartheid’ in the toystore?

@31 Yes, I too think a post that can be summed up as reductio ad absurdum makes a very good point…

37. Chaise Guevara

@ 30 Jim

“Who does that, though Tim? How many decent people do you know think like that? The only people I ever see complaining about this type of thing normally go ‘chuh’ whilst rolling their eyes would do that whenever ‘something more important’ comes along anyway.”

I’m not going to get into a debate about what defines a “decent” person, but I suspect that a lot of people who would normally be on your side about gender equality would draw the line at this, and possibly be put off supporting you on other things as they don’t want to be mocked by associated.

I’m not saying they’re RIGHT to feel that way, just that they probably will. You can get the same thing with environmentalism if you push too many minor things on people, even if all of those minor things are actually a good idea.

I would like to see the worst of the Tory Party to stop acting like Nazis, but right now, I would settle for them dressing like Nazis. If you expel the scumbag who dressed up as a Nazi, I would feel that was a step in the right direction.

The only MP I know of who dressed up as a Nazi is the Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer. Shall we wait and see whether he’s expelled?

39. Chaise Guevara

@ 29 Richard

“because you still have all the stereotypically-boys’ toys together and all the stereotypically-girls’ toys together, and the association only makes sense because one set are boys’ and the other are girls’.”

Not always the case, though. Even in a gender-neutral environment, it presumably makes sense to put the toy soldiers and toy guns in one place, and the dress-up dolls and make-up kits in another place, because they’re likely to appeal to the same individuals.

“You’re still reinforcing the same associations and stereotypes, you’re just not hanging up signs saying so.”

There’s a point where stereotype is replaced with fact – boys do genuinely seem more likely to want to play with guns than girls. I can see where you’re coming from, but the idea of forcing shops (if this is your intention) to follow strict layouts designed to create a gender-neutral environment seems ridiculous. I have this image of government inspectors walking around Toys R Us and demanding that the telescopes be moved another three feet away from the science kits.

A & E @ 31

But, hang on though. That is not an issue here is it? No-one here has suggested that we ban dolls, racing cars or science kits? All we they have done is label some toys differently to make in them more inclusive, so that ‘Betty’ does not feel she is ‘not allowed’ to ask for a microscope (for example) for Christmas because it is under the ‘boys’ bit of the shop.

I read science fiction for my sins, a genre dominated by male readers and perhaps younger readers too. However, when I go into a shop I can find the latest Iain Banks by going to the ‘science fiction’ section, I do not need to go into the ‘male’ section of the bookshop.

Surprisingly enough, despite saucepans, cushions, knitting needles, microwaves etc not being filed under ‘women’s stuff’ it appears we still manage to find these things in shops.

I’m not going to get into a debate about what defines a “decent” person, but I suspect that a lot of people who would normally be on your side about gender equality would draw the line at this, and possibly be put off supporting you on other things as they don’t want to be mocked by associated.

Quite. I’m a father of two daughters, and I don’t like (and fight to resist!) the tidal wave of pink that crashes over me whenever I go into a shop for kid’s stuff, clothing or toys. But my first reaction to the previous article on how separating stererotypical girls’ and boy’ toys was “gender apartheid” was to go ‘chuh’ and roll my eyes – even though I sort of agree with the basic premise.

As the poet Lennon said, rather appositely, “But if you go carrying pictures of Chairman Mao/You ain’t gonna make it with anyone anyhow.”

42. carlos barlos

@41 yeah but he also said in the same song ‘you can count me out/in’ Who knows what that guy was really thinking at the time.

If they don’t change the floors so that all the predominantly boys toys are on the 5th and all the predominantly girls toys are on the 3rd nothing will really change.

On the other hand if they do change the floors and make them all mixed the majority will have a harder job finding what they want and sales will inevitably go down – of course according to Jim I have to be ‘Tory scum’ or a ‘Tory c**t’ to take into account a thing like the shop’s profitability :-)

@34 – Thanks Richard

Mens and womens clothes argument doesnt ring wholly true to me, as skirts would fit a man perfectly well, but are genrally not worn.

Girls and boys generally seem to like different “types” of toys, so it makes sense to seperate them so you can easily find them.

However, I dont know if girls and boys liked different toys because they were marketed this way or its a more natural occurrence.

45. Richard Gadsden

@39 I certainly don’t think that legislation is the correct approach! Shops should be entitled to do what they like; their customers should be entitled to try to persuade them to do differently.

And, clearly, the shop will want to put things that the same customer is likely to buy together so they will walk past impulse-buy items while looking at other things. That’s perfectly legitimate.

But, as any nine-year-old boy will tell you, his sister’s Ken doll makes a pretty good James Bond.

Maybe they should be forced to sell toys like
‘Nigel the house husband (complete with feather duster)’ next to ‘Bob the builder’, and ‘Janet the Body builder’ next to Barbie – I’m sure they’ll go down a storm…

Chaise @ 37

but I suspect that a lot of people who would normally be on your side about gender equality would draw the line at this, and possibly be put off supporting you on other things as they don’t want to be mocked by associated.

Draw the line at what, exactly? You really think that there are people who object to a toy designed to promote needle point being moved to a section marked ‘arts and crafts’ or ‘hobbies’ or say a microscope (to use the same analogy) being shifted out of ‘Boys’ into a section labled ‘science and nature’ or whatever?

You really think that there are decent people objecting to any of that? Is it possible that most decent people wouldn’t have strong opinions either way?

I doubt there are lots of people out there who would act strongly to combat global warming, but are put of because some people object to having a ‘boys’ section in a toy shop?

48. carlos barlos

@46… hehehe Nigel the house husband. Sounds really sweet. I would buy it.

49. Chaise Guevara

@ 41 Tim

“But my first reaction to the previous article on how separating stererotypical girls’ and boy’ toys was “gender apartheid” was to go ‘chuh’ and roll my eyes – even though I sort of agree with the basic premise.”

Well, terms like that are REALLY counterproductive. As a famous tiger once said: “If you use up all your hyperbole straight away, you’ll have nothing left for when you really need it”.

Luke @ 43

On the other hand if they do change the floors and make them all mixed the majority will have a harder job finding what they want and sales will inevitably go down

How much of a fuckwit would you have to be to go into ‘Hamelys’ allegedly the best toy shop in the World and not find the toy you are looking for? How fucking stupid you have to be not to be able to find an action man or Lego in Hamelys?

Are you seriously telling me that you could not find a single fucking toy in the place if they remove the word ‘boys’ and ‘girls’ from the signage?

Is this what this is all about? Huge numbers fuckwitted bastards who are too stupid to read signs in a shop? Or is it just the fact that people have claimed to gained a ‘victory’ by allegedly prompting objections?

Let face it, if this was not announced as a ‘victory’ most of the moaners here wouldn’t even have noticed.

@ 46

Maybe they should be forced to sell toys like
‘Nigel the house husband (complete with feather duster)’ next to ‘Bob the builder’, and ‘Janet the Body builder’ next to Barbie – I’m sure they’ll go down a storm…

Why would anyone do such a thing? Who has suggested such a thing? What a moron you appear. It would have been easier for you to say fuck all, rather than make a twat of yourself, but then again, cunts like cannot help yourself.

51. Chaise Guevara

@ 45

Even if we’re talking about consumer pressure rather than legislation, I suspect that this is one of these cases where ANY layout would be pronounced “prejudiced” by someone or other. Once you start trying to find it you see it everywhere.

52. Chaise Guevara

@ 47 Jim

“Draw the line at what, exactly? You really think that there are people who object to a toy designed to promote needle point being moved to a section marked ‘arts and crafts’ or ‘hobbies’ or say a microscope (to use the same analogy) being shifted out of ‘Boys’ into a section labled ‘science and nature’ or whatever?

You really think that there are decent people objecting to any of that? Is it possible that most decent people wouldn’t have strong opinions either way?”

Yes, which is precisely the problem. I don’t think anyone would care, or notice, that a store used distinctions like “arts and crafts” and “science and nature” rather than “boys” and “girls”. But they might find the idea of being associated with people handing out leaflets saying “Ban Gender Apartheid In Toy Stores” to be hugely embarrassing. It’s the campaign that’s potentially counterproductive, not the intended outcome.

“I doubt there are lots of people out there who would act strongly to combat global warming, but are put of because some people object to having a ‘boys’ section in a toy shop?”

Think you’ve muddled my two examples there, mate.

Are you serious? You really wasted time with this? Whaty next? Tell debenhams to put mens underwear next to womens skirts? Some people need to egttheir priorities straight. When i go shopping for my son i go to the BOYS section because im buying a present for my BOY, it makes my lfie easier. Pathetic!

54. Chaise Guevara

@ 50 Jim

“How much of a fuckwit would you have to be to go into ‘Hamelys’ allegedly the best toy shop in the World and not find the toy you are looking for? How fucking stupid you have to be not to be able to find an action man or Lego in Hamelys?”

There’s a reason that supermarkets put the stuffing next to the Bisto and the crisps near the beer. It’s targeted marketing. The person who came in to buy Bisto might not have considered buying stuffing, but they’re making a roast anyway, so when they see it they grab it.

So Luke’s phrased this badly. It’s less to do with *finding* things and more to do with *noticing* things. Someone comes in to buy their kid a science kit, sees a telescope nearby and thinks “I bet they’d like that too!” With a less savvy layout they might never have noticed that the store sold telescopes.

Obviously you can still acheive this with conceptual areas like “science and nature”, but in retail terms it’s probably a good idea to put toy soldiers near the science kits too, to tap the pester power of (primarily) boys shopping with their parents. And some commenters sound as if they’d object to a science and nature section as it would still have more traditionally boys’ toys than girls’, and thus “promote stereotypes”.

@ 51

Bingo.

I pity people who see the world through the prism of identity politics.

I think we can say this is a great victory just by reading the vile bitterness of the tory trolls. Their bile and hatred of liberals is always a good reminder of how nasty and regimented they are.

I am sure they will grow up to be good little tory MPs who dress up in SS uniforms. Wonder which section of the shop will have their Nazi uniforms.

57. Chaise Guevara

@ 53

“Are you serious? You really wasted time with this? Whaty next?”

What next? Well, how about someone wasting their time commenting about an issue that they think is a waste of time?

I read the title of the thread quickly: “Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign”

Mmm, I thought, that looks as though it could prove interesting.

I think we can say this is a great victory……..

If this is a victory in life you have fucking lost. I do not understand how people can be so petty, im glad I dont understand…

Tim J @ 38

The only MP I know of who dressed up as a Nazi is the Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer. Shall we wait and see whether he’s expelled?

Was he an MP when he wore the costume? Nope. Difficult to see how you expel a man before he was actually an MP.

Was he photographed with people dressed as a Nazi and throwing salutes? Yes? He would be gone in my book. To be honest with poor old Ed, there is nothing to suggest that holds Nazi views.

I bet the Tory hold views closer to the Nazi Party though.

@50 – This is about a childrens toy store, is this type of language necessary considering it may appear in google results when children search for hamleys?

“How much of a fuckwit would you have to be to go into ‘Hamelys’ allegedly the best toy shop in the World and not find the toy you are looking for?”
================================================

Well, it won’t be the best toy shop in the world if things are hard to find – aside from the ‘secondary buying’ mentioned above if parents have to trawl all over the store to get the things they are looking for then the net effect will be that less items are sold – whether you like it or not.

I am amused by your foul mouthed rants but they are not very well thought out – and you simply cannot take any form of humour at all, have you always been like that ?

By the way, it is Hamleys – not “‘Hamelys’” – you f**kw*t :-)

“How much of a fuckwit would you have to be to go into ‘Hamelys’ allegedly the best toy shop in the World and not find the toy you are looking for?”
=================================================

Well it won’t be the best toy shop in the world if things are not easy to find, aside from impulse buying (which is mentioned above) if busy parents have to trawl over half the store to find what they are looking for then less will be sold – whether you like it or not.

I find your foul mouthed rants amusing but poorly thought out – and you have no sense of humour at all – have you always been like that ?

Oh by the way, the shop is called Hamleys – not “‘Hamelys’” – you f**kw*t :-)

I’ve been campaigning against gender stereotyping in toys myself, in my own small way.

Not only did I buy my niece a gun for her birthday, I also taught her how to slot her Glee dolls with a combat knife.

Chaise @ 54

So Luke’s phrased this badly. It’s less to do with *finding* things and more to do with *noticing* things.

So what items have been moved and to what sections? What has happened to the layout at Hamelys? Has everything been switched around?

I am at a distinct disadvantage here as I have never been in Hamleys and the picture is not all that clear, but I am going to have a stab in the dark here:

Third Floor ‘Girls’ now has ‘Barbie’ and ‘Hello Kitty’, first floor has lego on it and what used to be called ‘hobbies’ floor 5 has the logo ‘Hornby’ instead.

So here is what I think. Let us imagine someone was to got into the store to buy

‘some lego’
‘a hello kitty doll’
‘a train set’

A person of normal IQ would look at the layout, see what they were looking for and waltz past the slack jawed Barrys and Lukes who would be staring open mouthed attempting to comprehend what all those fancy words meant searching in vain for ‘boys’ and ‘girls’ to help them on their quest.

Or perhaps Barry and Luke would do exactly the same.

Well Jim, let’s hope you never have to run a toy store – because if you do you are going to go bankrupt – you can even call it ‘Hamelys’ if you like :-)

Luke @ 63

Well it won’t be the best toy shop in the world if things are not easy to find aside from impulse buying (which is mentioned above) if busy parents have to trawl over half the store to find what they are looking for then less will be sold – whether you like it or not.

So what has been moved, exactly? Trawl through the Store? Well if you have three different ages both and genders of kids then you are going to have to trawl through the store anyway, aren’t you?

You are STILL going to go from the third floor to the fith if you are buying say a barby and a train set.

TRY AND GRASP THIS SIMPLE CONCEPT. NOTHING HAS BEEN MOVED BECAUSE OF THIS CAMPAIGN!

All that has happened is that a floor that used to be called ‘Girls’ has logos for dolls on it.

The toy guns have not been moved alongside barbies or anything like that.

I’m going to say what I said under the last article on this subject seen as no-one commenthing seems to have set foot in Hamleys. Or, if they did, they weren’t paying attention.

Science toys were never in the boys section.

The only thing on the fifth floor, which is a Mezzanine and short on space, is action figures – Power Rangers, Star Wars, Doctor Who etc. I am not particularly in favour of labelling these as boys only, or in labelling Barbie, dressing up and make up girls, but no-one waskeeping the microscopes away from little girls. They were always in ‘Hobbies’ and ‘Interactive.’

So what has been moved, exactly? Trawl through the Store? Well if you have three different ages both and genders of kids then you are going to have to trawl through the store anyway, aren’t you?

Why mention having different genders of children at all? Surely it makes no difference to what toys they will want.

“but no-one waskeeping the microscopes away from little girls”
=============================================

Not a surprise – Hamleys wants to sell as many microscopes as possible.

Hamleys will have taken off the labels ‘Boys’ & ‘Girls’ because as I said that simple act won’t lose them any money. Personally I am not against the simple act of removing the labels either – if that’s as far as it goes – but it’s very funny how some people would actually worry about that and rant about ‘gender apartheid’, you just wind them up and off they go :-)

“I’m going to say what I said under the last article on this subject seen as no-one commenthing seems to have set foot in Hamleys. Or, if they did, they weren’t paying attention.”

Of course everyones been in hamleys, why else would anyone even bother with this if they hadn’t?

I don’t understand how this is seen as a victory other than to satisfy the needs of the people campaigning.

What was wrong with the store in question in the first place or even so the labeled sections of their floors? Shops have almost always used ‘Boy’ sections and ‘girl’ sections and as far as I know, the general population didn’t have a problem.

All I can think of is that this change has just made parents feel a bit better as to where certain toys/games/etc are situated. It’s not like the kids are going to care where their toys are or what they are found next to.

To summarise, this campaign has changed nothing, but at least a few individuals will be happy about it.

@71

Are you seriously suggesting that the Liberal Conspiracy crowd cannot manage to get worked up about the behaviour of an institution that doesn’t affect them directly?

More seriously, my point still stands. Science toys were not labelled as being for Boys. They were not on the “Boys” floor. The only thing that was, was Action figures.

Jim @ 67:

“So what has been moved, exactly? Trawl through the Store? Well if you have three different ages both and genders of kids then you are going to have to trawl through the store anyway, aren’t you?

You are STILL going to go from the third floor to the fith if you are buying say a barby and a train set.

TRY AND GRASP THIS SIMPLE CONCEPT. NOTHING HAS BEEN MOVED BECAUSE OF THIS CAMPAIGN!”

Perhaps it might be a good idea to go back and read what Luke actually wrote @ 43:

“If they don’t change the floors so that all the predominantly boys toys are on the 5th and all the predominantly girls toys are on the 3rd nothing will really change.

On the other hand if they do change the floors and make them all mixed the majority will have a harder job finding what they want and sales will inevitably go down…”

If you’re going to launch into foul-mouthed tirades about how stupid other posters are, it might be a good idea to, y’know, read what they actually wrote.

75. Chaise Guevara

@ 68

“Science toys were never in the boys section.”

Cheers – that does make me wonder why Hamleys was singled out.

@73 – That would mean people have got worked up over something that was never true to begin with, impossible I tells ya.

Always facinating how in conervative male culture the segregation of the sexes is so important. The tory male culturally has so much in common with the taliban. A fear and loathing of female power that must be suppressed.

As for Hamleys it would appear they have listened to their cutomers want. I thought that was what tory trolls liked about capitalism. Priceless.

78. the a&e charge nurse

[36] “Yes, I too think a post that can be summed up as reductio ad absurdum makes a very good point…” – I was thinking of the humour angle more than anything else, which is entirely understandable given the shrill nature of these complaints – but in any case, are Bandit 1′s coments any more reductionist than claims of ‘gender apartheid’?

As other posters have said it is not so much the signage in Hamleys that has provoked a response rather the mindset that drives this and other campaigns like it.

Let’s say Hamleys refused to change the way the store is laid out – the underlying leverage is taking a risk over negative publicity in the midst of a deepening recession.
If the shop had taken the risk maybe such pressure might have ultimately led to reduced sales and in turn job losses?

Personally I would put the economic welfare of a small business (especially given the economic climate) before politically correct signage – but that’s just me.

79. the a&e charge nurse

Of course it goes without saying that nobody is FORCED to shop at Hamleys – why can’t the complainers open their own toy store and then they could display whatever sort of signage that makes them happy?

Jeez. There are a lot of people who might go some of the way with the left. But they themselves couldn’t give tuppence over whether the third floor is labelled “Girls” or not. The fact that a bunch of vociferous humourless lefties have expended so much energy crying wolf over this pointless, trivial issue is what is off-putting.

Some commenters here seem to be wilfully obtuse about how this could be the case. After all, if you don’t care about Hamleys’ labelling, why would you be put off other issues supported by those who do? They might want to think how the Tories droning on about Europe for the last twenty years put the people off the Tories, despite the British people having a well-documented antipathy towards the EU. Same problem, different issues and scale.

81. Chaise Guevara

@ 78 Ross

“Its hard to believe how messed up in the head a person can be without actually displaying symptoms of mental illness. ”

To be fair, Sally shows some pretty clear symptoms of mental illness.

82. Tax Obesity, Not Business

It seems to me that this discussion shows the over-sensitivity of some people to things that offend them, as discussed by Chris Dillow on here recently. If you don’t like the way Hamley’s display their wares, then don’t shop there. Simple. Likewise, if you don’t like violent video games or sexually explicit films, don’t buy or watch them. Or if you don’t like cleaning materials or cosmetics that use animal-testing, don’t buy them. Consumer power is low-key, but it is effective. Self-righteous indignation , on the other hand, tends to lead to a lack of proportion and frenetic ‘bansturbation’.

83. Tax Obesity, Not Business

@ 77:

“The tory male culturally has so much in common with the taliban. A fear and loathing of female power that must be suppressed.”

Err…Margaret Thatcher?

Don’t really understand why there’s so much bile on this thread. As far as I can see Laura had a legitimate point to make about toys being gender-segregated and so why shouldn’t she approch Hamley’s about it? They didn’t have to change the signs, but they did. It is not more difficult to buy toys in the store, you simply go to the floors which contains the lego, or the dolls, etc etc. Nothing is made worse for anyone and the shop has clearly been made better for some.

If your imagination is so poor as a parent that you have to go to the gender-appropriate floor *before* you can think of anything to buy your child, then that’s something to work on isn’t it?

If your imagination is so poor as a parent that you have to go to the gender-appropriate floor *before* you can think of anything to buy your child, then that’s something to work on isn’t it?

I tried imagining the most suitable present once for my girlfriends son, and was dismayed to see the stores inventory wasn’t automatically updated to match my inner vision.

It was ok though, I just went to the boys floor and got some piece of plastic crap.

“This is great news, and a step in the right direction.”

I agree.

The signs are not only stupid they betray a very common ignorance about the significance of the colours pink and blue. Prior to around the 1920s they were more often actually associated as follows: blue for girls, pink for boys. The change was on the whim of a large US department store, and it caught on. Within decades we have reached the stage where people imagine this has always been the case, and that it is due to some innate difference. Of course little girls tend to like pink – most of their bloody toys are manufactured in pink. One may as well argue that Chinese people instinctively like rice.

It shows how daft and in fact totally arbitrary a lot of gender categorisations are. there is no need to rope kids into such a silly system of thinking. They sould play with the toys they like and not be made to feel it’s wrong to do so. Only people who are snivellingly insecure and worried about what other people will think will really care.

@ Chaise

But if, for argument’s sake, 90% of kids who want toy guns are boys, and 90% of kids who want dolls are girls, what exactly would you want to see done about this alleged stereotyping?

Agree this is a great victory for Laura, but if we are serious about ending gender inequalities we need to go much further.

How about labelling all toys that could reinforce gender stereotypes then compelling parents to buy from each assortment equally. So when you buy a doll, for example, you are given a voucher permitting you to buy a toy gun, or whatever, next time and vice versa.

Indeed we could apply the same concept to clothes. Buying a pair of trousers gets you get a “girlie” voucher ensuring you can’t buy another pair until you’ve bought your son a skirt.

By such means, we could eventually eliminate gender identity entirely. So when your children get married, nobody will know or care whether or not they are gay.

It just wouldn’t matter!!!

Good grief

Can’t be many parents in the comments section. The biggest single conditioner is/are the parent(s). How you live your life. How you relate to your partner and your kids. Your attitudes to others. Your reaction to the news on TV in front of the children. The time you dedicate to them.

My daughter is also called Laura. Hopefully, she’ll find something more worthwhile to campaign about.

If you want your daughter to play with Action Man take her there or buy it for her. More fool you, but what the hell is the parent for?

Does anybody really think that this ‘victory’ is going to achieve anything at all in parental buying patterns? If I go to the shop to buy a doll (my right, with my kids) I’ll find it. I don’t much care if it is under Girls or Dolls.

With this theory I ought to be a right b*st*rd. I played aggressive sports, founded a wargames club, studied military history in my spare time, refought bloody battles like Borodino on a 6m2 table (got the same bloody (as in blood) result too) and today am an overly-understanding, tosser-pardoning, empathetic wimp.

89. Tax Obesity, Not Business

@ 92:

While not disagreeing with you about blue and pink, I’m not so sure you are right to say:
“One may as well argue that Chinese people instinctively like rice.”

I have friends who adopted a child of Chinese parentage, and they have been astounded by his strong preference for rice from a very early age. They speculate that it could be due to gut flora acquired from his birth mother; but, equally, it could just be his preference as an individual…

As far as I can see Laura had a legitimate point to make about toys being gender-segregated and so why shouldn’t she approch Hamley’s about it? They didn’t have to change the signs, but they did.

Indeed. The idea that this is ‘PC gone mad’ makes me laugh. Some people deserve to be wound up.

Violet @ 87

I am afraid that this thread is now a microcosm of this blogg and the level that politics is conducted in this Country.

Laura has campaigned for something and she has seen a change in the signage in this shop. A completely benign change. She has (rightly or wrongly) claimed that as a victory for her campaign. The first dozen or so replies were people announcing that they could not care less about such a change. Why would anyone post a reply to a thread that they have no interest in the subject matter?

Then, we get the usual crap about complaining about, not the change in the signage, but another change that never actually happened. We are now bombarded with people who are too stupid to read a sign.

People who say “Hey, I am too stupid to understand what floor the Barbie dolls are on, even though the word ‘Barbie’ appears on a plaque numbered three” start to pile in too, lest the half-wit contingent is forgotten.

In any normal circumstances, 99% of us would shrug our shoulders and move on, but not the perpetually offended Right who see everything as some kind of test. Had any of these people even been to Hamleys and seen these changes, they simply would have carried on regardless, found the appropriate floor and got on with it.

Look, I get it. There are some things worth fighting for. There are things that change that actually matter. If we were forcing you to change the name of a street from a dead soldier to ‘Nelson Mandela’ or a University or even the ‘RUC’ to the PSNI, I could understand what the Right were complaining about, but this is a completely benign change, a change that has been brought in without any duress, no public money was spent, no legislation was passed so where is the beef?

Why is this so difficult for you? I content that the only thing that matters is that someone on the ‘Left’ wants something and even if you do not understand it, even if you cannot care about it, by the Christ you will stop at nothing to make sure they can’t get it.

TONB @ 85

If you don’t like the way Hamley’s display their wares…

Or alternatively, if you don’t like a thread’s contents, you could just ignore it.

But, of course, it is not good enough for you to ‘not be interested’ in a thread. You have to come to a Left Wing blogg, written by Left Wing people for are Left Wing audience and then be offended by it. Sheez, if there was some way you didn’t have to read a blogg with people you do not agree with

93. the a&e charge nurse

Jim [91] the pressure brought to bear on Hamleys is an extension of the philosophy of this woman.
http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2008/09/11/article-1054761-00CBBCB500000190-871_233x380.jpg

No more, and no less?

@ Jim:

“People who say “Hey, I am too stupid to understand what floor the Barbie dolls are on, even though the word ‘Barbie’ appears on a plaque numbered three” start to pile in too, lest the half-wit contingent is forgotten.”

Examples?

“But, of course, it is not good enough for you to ‘not be interested’ in a thread. You have to come to a Left Wing blogg, written by Left Wing people for are Left Wing audience”

Yeah, that’s right, only left-wingers should be allowed to express an opinion here. It must be the liberal in you coming out.

95. Tax Obesity, Not Business

@ 92:

…Left Wing blogg, written by Left Wing people for are Left Wing audience and then be offended by it….

I’m not “offended” by anything written on here. I don’t go around being offended by people’s opinions – or their clothing, habits or anything else – which is not to say that I might not disagree with and challenge their or your opinions. Given how often you lapse into vulgar abuse, you seem to take offence very readily, which may be because you think that taking offence is a necessary condition of entering into discussion or debate. The psychopathology of politics (right and left) fascinates me, and there are some fine specimens on here – of which you are one.

Sunny publishes some crap, but he also publishes some very good stuff too, eg Chris Dillow, Frances Coppola, Flying Rodent. And, often, the calibre of the comments — eg chaise guevara or luis enrique – is very high.

A&E @ 93

They changed their signs, mate. That is all that they did, they changed their signs like every other business in the Country has done or will do in the near future. They will have paid a king ransom to consultants who looked at various designs, showed them to focus groups and then to the board. So what if they were (or indeed not) influenced by this campaign? I bet they were going to change it anyway.

I am going to stick my neck out here, I may be proved wrong but I bet you Laura did not promise to come down and suicide bomb the shop, she wrote a letter to the CEO. It doesn’t affect the commercial running of the shop, does it? I mean there are not thousands of slack jawed fuckwits unable to find their kid a bike or a dolls house wandering about the shop. I bet when they changed it, no-one died, the roof did not collapse. Do you really think this has been introduced without Hamleys looking at the impact?

The new sign matters far, far more to Laura than the old one ever did to you, assuming you were even aware of the old sign even existed. So why man the barricades for it? Is it really worth being bayoneted in the guts for a sign with the word ‘Boys’ on it? No-one is suggesting that boys be castrated at the age of ten or that ‘action man’ becomes a diversity officer, so tell me, between you and me, mind what is so damn important here?

97. Chaise Guevara

@ 95

Much obliged, good sir!

98. Chaise Guevara

@ 86 Lamia

“They sould play with the toys they like and not be made to feel it’s wrong to do so.”

Yeah. I think a lot of people supporting this campaign are blowing it well out of proportion, but I remember as a kid liking certain toys but feeling I shouldn’t play with them because they were “for girls”. Which is, well, silly, but kids are impressionable.

I’d like to see stores not encouraging the idea that certain things are “appropriate” for one gender or the other. On the other hand, like Pagar, I’m not at all happy with the idea that we then need to inspect store layouts to make sure they’re not keeping too many “traditional boy’s toys” too close together, thus supporting gender norms through clandestine means etc. etc. It’s a bit too much like saying we should encourage men to shave their legs and women to wear fake beards to create a healthy society.

I’m not at all sure that stores that use boy/girl sections simply for reasons of retail convenience deserve to be punished through consumer action, either. When clothes shopping, I find it very handy not to have to sort through the jeans to find which ones are men’s and which ones are women’s.

There are smarter ways that stores could do this and get the best of both worlds. Group toys by categories, on a “if you like that you’ll like this” basis, but position those categories with an eye for demographics too – like putting the action figures section next to the football paraphenalia.

Fascinating how the tory troll changes his opinion from one of …. “capitalism is brilliant, because the customer is always right” …………to

“if you don’t like it, start your own shop” Hilarious. Just another example of the bullshit of the tory troll.

Also revealing that this topic has more than 200 posts. As usual, anything that involves the female sex usually is a banker for getting the knuckle dragging, right wing , Taliban culture wars, morons out of their caves.

It is interesting to see the amount of ‘I couldn’t care less’ comments by people who are clearly at least a little irritated about this decision. As has been noted, many would possibly see themselves as liberals or libertartians of a kind.

This is nothing to do with ‘PC’, let alone PC gone mad, it is just a little victory for the individual freedom and imagination of children. It should have support form anyone anywhere on the political spectrum who really values that. It will have no impact one way or the other on the vast majority of children, but it may make it a little bit easier for some boys who like to play with supposedly ‘girly’ toys, and vice versa. And a good thing too.

There have been no threats made, and Hamley’s didn’t have to agree. It would hardly have been the end of the world had they not chosen to, but I think it is a nice sign of an open mind that they did.

If parents are uptight about this, then that unfortunately says more about their own fears of what unimaginative and narrow-minded people might say, than anything about the numerous girls or boy who have interests and likes beyond the narrow and arbitrary prescribed gender lines.

@ bilboaboy

“If you want your daughter to play with Action Man take her there or buy it for her. More fool you, but what the hell is the parent for?”

This isn’t about what the parent wants a child to play with, but what different children themselves want to play with. If your daughter wanted to play with Action Man, what then? ‘More fool her’ for wanting to? Or ‘More fool you’ if you told her that was the ‘wrong’ toy for her?

“and today [I] am an overly-understanding, tosser-pardoning, empathetic wimp.”

Perhaps not so much as you think, since you appear – sorry if I am misreading you – to think that children’s toy preferences should be dictated by their parents, and in conformity with boring and unimaginative gender conventions.

“Can’t be many parents in the comments section…”

And again you rather miss the point. It’s not about parents, it’s about children. The toy isn’t for you.

Comparing the signs, it seems to me that Hamleys have made the new one more accessible for people whose first language is not English. Note also the change from B for Basement to Lower Ground floor. All very sensible business practice.

@ Jim

No-one is suggesting that boys be castrated at the age of ten or that ‘action man’ becomes a diversity officer, so tell me, between you and me, mind what is so damn important here?

I repeat my comment from the previous thread.

On the surface, this looks like a pretty whimsical debate, but there is a serious undertone.

The problem with extreme feminists and their supporters is that when they discover that the reality of the world diverges from how their rather shallow philosophy says it ought to be, they get all authoritarian in an effort to try to make it conform.

Like trying to dictate to shops how they must sell their products.

@ Chaise,

I think I almost totally agree with you there. I believe Hamley’s had every right to say no and that it ought not to have been any big deal either way.

“I’m not at all sure that stores that use boy/girl sections simply for reasons of retail convenience deserve to be punished through consumer action, either.”

Again I agree, although that’s up to the customer.

Personally, whenever I see blue for boys and pink for girls I roll my eyes and find it rather grating – not least because as a child I liked neither. I wouldn’t say the Hamley’s old signage would put me off buying something for my nephews or nieces, but I find it slightly pointlessly conformist, and I absolutely believe in encouraging the imagination of children.

I wouldn’t actually want my nephews and neices to grow up to be actual pirates, but in the meantime if they want to play at being Captain Jack Sparrow or Elizabeth Swann, or a mermaid or a cannibal, or all of them in turn, fine.

104. Tax Obesity, Not Business

chaise guevara @ 97:

I urge you to write a piece for LC. Luis Enrique, likewise.

105. Chaise Guevara

@ 104

Kind of you to suggest it, but I’m not so confident in my own knowledge as all that, and also I don’t think Sunny likes me much.

That said, Luis has more than once been told he really should set up a blog, and that’s something I wholly support!

106. Chaise Guevara

@ 103 Lamia

Agreed, well said. I will admit that the blue/pink thing is strangely pervasive. I remember reading a cartoon in which a bloke was trying to steel himself up to buy a pink razor, even though he knew it was an identical product to the more “manly” razors next to it.

I think I’d have the same problem. If I really needed a shave and the only razor in the shop was pink, I’d have to make a conscious effort to ignore the colour scheme and buy it, even though that shouldn’t make any difference whatsoever.

Ross,

what point are you trying to demonstrate, apart from that you have discovered the C + P function on your computer?

Take that, patriarchy! Pow!

Idiot troll proving my point……. “Like trying to dictate to shops how they must sell their products”

Silly Sally, I thought the wonders of capitalism was that the customer is always right. It appears the private corporation must run a right wing, Taliban political position in tory troll land.

Why isn’t this all over the news?

I agree with Laura, and it’s good that Hamley’s have had to change.

It’s also absurd to say that because there are bigger battles, the smaller ones should be abandoned.

Well done!

Pagar @ 102

On the surface, this looks like a pretty whimsical debate, but there is a serious undertone.

A serious undertone, my foot! Every year all over the Country, companies rebrand/rename and all without comment. Yet most of us never think twice about it. I bet you there is brand that has been revamped and you are none the wiser as to why any changes where implemented. You have been told that one company has changed its sign for reasons that may or may not be true.

So does the new sign make the slightest bit of a difference how society treats young girls? If you believe not, then why bother complaining about this change? If it does not make a difference, then why bother commenting on it? What skin comes of your nose at this?

If this sign does have an influence, then surely this woman has campaigned to change society for the ‘better’ in her opinion? Isn’t that her right in society? Hasn’t she got the Right to campaign for something that she believes is a determent to society?

I get the feeling that most of the moaners on here couldn’t care less one way or another, but it is the thought that other people might get their way that annoys them.

So, why not live and let live, Pagar? This sign doesn’t matter an iota to you and you know it, so where’s the beef?

XXX @ 94

Yeah, that’s right, only left-wingers should be allowed to express an opinion here. It must be the liberal in you coming out.

But that is not what I said, is it? I simply ask the question why do you people come to a blog that you know you will simply not agree with the people who post or the majority of entries, then totally ignore the facts that you are presented with and carry on regardless? To me that is totally odd behaviour.

Congratulations on your successful campaign Laura! Am quite puzzled why quite so many people are outraged at the thought of toys being classified by type rather than allocated an intended gender of user.

Anyone concerned that the author is troubling herself over the “small stuff” is in some way detracting from attempts to challenge global issues may be reassured to know that there is not some distinction between small and large scale campaigners – usually there is a massive crossover of people who involve themselves in both – and that small campaigns don’t actually syphon energy from bigger ones – if anything, successful small campaigns add to big ones by developing campaigners skills/experience and helping to build a culturally shared belief in possible social change.

I’m more puzzled still by the comments that seem to angrily declare biological differences between the sexes (which in fairness the article doesn’t dispute) without any obvious of the actual knowledge of the compex biology of neuroscience the author has.

@99 It HAS generated an interesting and revealing amount of, well, “feedback”, hasn’t it?

Oh well, at least all the Hard Men can still go to the ground floor to bully the Soft Toys…

@Barry 53: I’ve just put up a sign saying that this website is a women’s website. If you’re a MAN, you’re not allowed to post here any more – to do so would be no different to wearing frilly dresses and having babies. Clearly.

@114. Jim: “So does the new sign make the slightest bit of a difference how society treats young girls? If you believe not, then why bother complaining about this change? If it does not make a difference, then why bother commenting on it? What skin comes of your nose at this?”

If you believe that the old sign is significant (ie you are a supporter of Laura Nelson’s campaign), you may be quite jubilant about the change.

If you believe that the old sign is significant, there is a long list of reasons why jubilation might be presumptuous:
i. Signage in toy shops does not determine adult purchases of toys for children much
ii. Signage in toy shops does not influence how children shop (ie drag the adult around) much
iii. Gender identity signifiers exist outside toy shops (and are probably more explicit)
iv. Hamleys have sold toys for 100 years so it is reasonable to assume that they understand their target audiences and organise their stock accordingly
v. Understanding target audiences means that the shop owner changes things (eg signage) to sell more stuff
vi. There was a possibility for Hamleys that changing their signage would be detrimental to business; it must be clear to consumers where you buy Barbie and where you get a train set; the new signs are clearer than the old ones

Just accept the fact that Hamleys changed their signage for business reasons. Kidding yourself that Hamleys changed their signs owing to consumer protest is an illusion, self deception. The skin on my nose may become bruised over this: if you have a cause for which you proclaim that you have a result, you must have a demonstrable series of actions (cause and effect). If potential supporters perceive that there is no relationship between cause and effect, they become disillusioned.

More seriously though, gender labelling of products annoys me in general anyway. Why should the decision on what clothes adults wear be declared by corporations? (There are size issues as someone pointed out, but the segregation of clothing by gender extends _far_ beyond this; not to mention that there’s plenty of variation within each gender – some men can fit into a skirt just as nicely as any woman;))

I remember being in John Lewis once where a customer was asking where the handkerchiefs were, and the shop assistant explained that the men’s handkerchiefs were here, and the women’s handkerchiefs were at the other end of the shop. What? It’s something you blow your nose on! Then there are the birthday cards that, even when it’s cards for a friend, have to be packaged into “For Him” and “For Her”. Because obviously only women like fluffy wuffy kittens, and men must like football and cars and sailing.

Imagine going into PC World, and finding the shop was divided into “men’s” and “women’s”, and that your choice of laptop or phone was restricted by what was marketed to your gender? Had computer technology developed a century ago, this may well have happened. And Barry et al would be going “Of course I’m going to buy a MAN’s computer, I’m a MAN”.

Two wrongs don’t make a right. Saying “But there’re other examples of this!” isn’t a compelling argument. But also, the issue of children’s toys is generally a far bigger problem, as it affects their upbringing, their education, so it is reasonable to focus on this without criticising the other things. It’s frustrating that people are criticising the lack of women in say IT, completely ignoring that 20 years ago, boys were encouraged to play with electronic gadgets, and girls with dolls. Or consider fancy dress costumes – doctors for boys, nurses for girls? Perhaps with this change, some good will come of it, even if we have to wait another 20 years.

Almost up to 250 posts now. These sort of stories always bring out the tory Taliban.

@114. Rhiannon: “I’m more puzzled still by the comments that seem to angrily declare biological differences between the sexes (which in fairness the article doesn’t dispute) without any obvious of the actual knowledge of the compex biology of neuroscience the author has.”

Please do not accuse me of writing angrily (in this thread, at least). “Internet anger” is often a perception: s/he may not be necessarily be angry, but annoyed or exasperated or frustrated by clever argument.

I live life with problems, the most immediate of which is why I should rank the opinion of a neuroscientist (of a theoretical discipline) more highly than psychologists and practical therapists. Theory versus practice?

NB: In the UK, what is the difference between psychology and psychiatry?

@119. Sally: “These sort of stories always bring out the tory Taliban.”

Sally, please make your mind up. My costume maker created a fine replica of the Brownshirt SA uniform, but it was all too late. Please provide your tips on how to wrap a turban.

@charlieman: I wasn’t talking about one specific user, but try substituting the word “emphatic” for “angry” if it suits. As far as your other comment goes, neuroscience is evidence based (as in looking at actual physical neurological differences and the complexities of these) whereas comments about what children “naturally” choose relate to subjective interpretations of behaviour without any possible control of environmental factors, so are not really scientific, just opinion borrowing the language of science to attach credibility. As for therapists and psychologists, I wouldn’t assume a hierarchy – I’m a social psychologist, and would trust a biological psychologist to have better knowledge of biology than me, which is after all the purpose of studying anything, to have a better knowledge about it.

Assuming this is not meant to be a sarcastic question, a psychiatrist trains in medicine before specialising in mental illness, whereas a psychologist can specialise in any area of psychology and is generally not medically trained.

Almost up to 250 posts now. These sort of stories always bring out the tory Taliban.”

Same lines over and over…..

Charlieman @ 117

Just accept the fact that Hamleys changed their signage for business reasons.

Which is a perfectly fair position to take. Why anyone would need to post this position under this thread is anyone’s guess.

Kidding yourself that Hamleys changed their signs owing to consumer protest is an illusion, self deception.

Again, what is the big deal IF that is what Laura has done? Why has anyone got the need to use the comments page to say that?

if you have a cause for which you proclaim that you have a result, you must have a demonstrable series of actions (cause and effect).

Again, why does she need to do that in this case?

The point being that Laura’s OP states that she campaigned for something and her ‘target’ has changed the sign. What followed is a dozen posts from people who said they were not interested in her campaign. Who does that type of thing and why? How many campaigns do you go out of your way to prove you are not interested in that campaign?

Then we are told that he new signs are too confusing. Again, who does that? Who complains that signs in shops are too confusing and to what end? A toy shop sign says that Barbies are on floor 3 and people are confused by that? Really?

To be honest, Charlie, I get the distinct feeling that the anti people are just knee jerk posting. They are only really objecting to this because they think the ‘Left’ have somehow won (or believe they have won) something.

I cannot believe people give a stuff either way.

@122. Rhiannon:

Thank you for honest spirit in this debate. Jumping to my final question about the difference between psychology and psychiatry, I was not being deliberately sarcastic. I have observed that the schools have merged in universities and sought clarification. Medical practice and analysis of consumer behaviour are now part of the same course. Which might be right, but we need to think about it.

“As far as your other comment goes, neuroscience is evidence based (as in looking at actual physical neurological differences and the complexities of these)” AND “I’m a social psychologist”.

*I* think that *you* (or someone like you) are more qualified to comment on how children are influenced by the world in which they live. If we were able to record the lives of children (via brain scans, plethysmographs, eye focus recorders etc), would you wish to do it?

Neuroscience tells us a bit about genetics and gestation. Nine months during which parents worry a lot. Then another 12 years of worrying that might give a clue whether a child is normal. Are there any neuroscience records of young people who are later identified as sociopaths?

126. flyingrodent

It’s the same every time some group get together and decide to ban (x) or pressurise (y) over some issue of vital importance to a vanishingly small fraction of middle class people.

Basically, we’re dealing with folk who can’t tell the difference between narking an exclusive retailer into making a minor policy change, to avoid offending wealthy consumers and Rosa Lee Parks refusing to get off a bus. In practice, it elevates “Whatever ignorant crap Clarkson has said this week” or “Whatever Mumsnet are annoyed about today” to the status of a critical national issue.

I assure you, this stuff hits the public ear like the fat end of a pool cue. We’re in the middle of a worldwide economic depression that has destroyed the livelihoods of millions upon millions of people in this country alone.

It’s not that people shouldn’t campaign on degenderifying upmarket toy stores or whatever. Best of luck to ‘em! It’s that it’s very much a matter of concern for one tiny, largely urban gang of well-off individuals. My advice is, don’t tie your website to this kind of thing. It makes you look bad and, worse, utterly oblivious to the reality of most people’s lives.

If you want to support this kind of campaign well, more power to you. Just don’t be surprised when you acquire a reputation for being an irrelevant, metropolitan campaign group for disaffected, upper-middle class shoppers with a mania for banning things and an utterly cloth-eared indifference to the rest of society… Because that is exactly what this kind of thing looks like.

127. Chaise Guevara

@ 126

“My advice is, don’t tie your website to this kind of thing. It makes you look bad and, worse, utterly oblivious to the reality of most people’s lives.”

Yep, that pretty much hits the nail on the head.

I keep my family going on a few hundred pounds a month (I work part time and my husband is a full time student nurse). I live in the west midlands and haven’t visited Hamleys for some years, maybe since I was a kid. I get very irritated by the old strategy of priveleging class over gender in terms of equality issues – it’s patronising to anyone like me who is broke without being . They are both important. Women (and children) are the most exploited by the international system of capitalism (probably in making the toys for Hamleys amongst other things), but the issue is not “Hamleys are an important part of my life and I can now approve of them”, it is that society is structured in a very rigid binary way for children which encourages the narrow and divisive thinking pattern that allows class based inequality to thrive, and the signposting in Hamleys is an example of that which has now been challenged to draw attention to the issue.

Presumably this campaign was based on the feminist fantasy that oestrogen and testosterone have absolutely no effect on an individual, either in the womb or thereafter?

Robinson, 130: As opposed to the fantasy that men and women are completely different, and that all such differences are fundamental biological genetic differences? Yes, straw men are fun.

I would be curious to know which of Hamley’s toys are related to oestrogen and testosterone? Perhaps shops should give people hormone tests before they’re allowed to buy something.

@130. m: “I would be curious to know which of Hamley’s toys are related to oestrogen and testosterone?”

Everyone knows that hormone analysis kits are found next to microscopes.

In what sense are children exploited?

flyingrodent:

Basically, we’re dealing with folk who can’t tell the difference between narking an exclusive retailer into making a minor policy change, to avoid offending wealthy consumers and Rosa Lee Parks refusing to get off a bus.

I believe the only ones to make this kind of comparison have been those critical in this thread. We’ve even had “YEAH BUT WHATABOUT WORLD HUNGER?”. So far as I can tell, no-one agreeing with this sees it at all like Rosa effing Parks. Those celebrating it as the rebirth of Martin

In practice, it elevates “Whatever ignorant crap Clarkson has said this week” or “Whatever Mumsnet are annoyed about today” to the status of a critical national issue.

I assure you, this stuff hits the public ear like the fat end of a pool cue. We’re in the middle of a worldwide economic depression that has destroyed the livelihoods of millions upon millions of people in this country alone.

It’s not that people shouldn’t campaign on degenderifying upmarket toy stores or whatever. Best of luck to ‘em! It’s that it’s very much a matter of concern for one tiny, largely urban gang of well-off individuals. My advice is, don’t tie your website to this kind of thing.

I assure you, this stuff hits the public ear like the fat end of a pool cue.

flyingrodent:

Basically, we’re dealing with folk who can’t tell the difference between narking an exclusive retailer into making a minor policy change, to avoid offending wealthy consumers and Rosa Lee Parks refusing to get off a bus.

I believe the only ones to make this kind of comparison have been those critical in this thread. We’ve even had “YEAH BUT WUTABOUT WORLD HUNGER?”. So far as I can tell, no-one agreeing with this sees it at all like Rosa effing Parks. Those celebrating it as the rebirth of Martin Luther King lie entirely in your head.

I assure you, this stuff hits the public ear like the fat end of a pool cue.

Hold on. Originally you compared this campaign unfavourably towards Rosa Parks. You really think the American Civil Rights movement was popular? It doesn’t matter whether an issue, big or small, has public support or not. The goal of activism is to change people’s minds. You don’t change anything by doing nothing. Simply accepting public opinion as irrevocably fixed does not seem terribly helpful to me. That way lies Blairism.

We’re in the middle of a worldwide economic depression that has destroyed the livelihoods of millions upon millions of people in this country alone.

Irrelevant. Not only can we do more than one thing at once, but you’ve not even provided any evidence that NOT asking Hamleys to change its signs would’ve helped in any way. George Osborne will still be Chancellor, either way.

It’s not that people shouldn’t campaign on degenderifying upmarket toy stores or whatever. Best of luck to ‘em! It’s that it’s very much a matter of concern for one tiny, largely urban gang of well-off individuals. My advice is, don’t tie your website to this kind of thing.

The two bolded bits contradict each other. You seem to be saying “I support what you want but just SHUTUPABOUTIT”.

Since you brought up Rosa Parks, I offer this quote from MLK, advice to activits everywhere:

“I must confess that over the past few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen’s Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to “order” than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: “I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action”; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man’s freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a “more convenient season.” Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection”

#133 is a unintentional post (hit submit accidentally). Can someone fish out subsequent comment of mine from the spam filter?

136. Chaise Guevara

@ 134 Alex

I think you’re misreading FR on a couple of points here:

“Hold on. Originally you compared this campaign unfavourably towards Rosa Parks. You really think the American Civil Rights movement was popular? It doesn’t matter whether an issue, big or small, has public support or not. The goal of activism is to change people’s minds. ”

FR isn’t saying “Look, public opinion’s against you, therefore you may as well give up”. He’s talking about picking your battles. If most people find this sort of thing silly and/or overbearing, it might put them off progressive social goals as a whole. They might get worried about being associated with the sort of people who go on campaigns like this, and therefore decide not to support much more important campaigns.

I’m not saying that they’re right to think like that, only that they probably will. He’s not saying the cause is pointless, he’s saying it may be actively damaging to related causes.

“The two bolded bits contradict each other. You seem to be saying “I support what you want but just SHUTUPABOUTIT”.”

Similar thing here. He’s saying that people can do what they want, but that it’s a tactical error for Sunny, as a specific individual, to vocally support the campaign on LC.

You’re right about other things. Appealing to worse problems like the recession IS irrelevant, and I agree that it’s the naysayers who are making (sarcastic) links between the campaigners and social heroes, rather than the campaigners themselves.

137. flyingrodent

Thanks Chaise, you’re spot on with those two points and have put it a lot more succinctly than I would’ve done.

It doesn’t matter whether an issue, big or small, has public support or not. The goal of activism is to change people’s minds. You don’t change anything by doing nothing.

As CG says, I’m not talking about never complaining about anything. I’m talking about picking your battles wisely.

Now, I appreciate that lots of people think that this issue is very important. I’ve had exactly this type of discussion before with people who think it’s imperative that we e.g. badger retailers into moving lads’ mags to the top shelf, or get tossers like Clarkson sacked, or stop parents giving their kids fizzy drinks and chocolate in their packed lunches because it makes them inattentive and so on and on, in any number of private freedom vs public good style arguments. I’m more than happy for people to campaign on any of these issues, if it seems right to them.

However, I am saying that I personally don’t see any value at all in this type of campaign. I think these issues are utterly trivial and that whatever minor gains are made on the swings will be lost on the roundabouts of public opinion. Nor do I think that it’s difficult to understand why that is.

And of course, I’m not saying that no-one may discuss any other issues while unemployment is so high. That argument would annihilate any and all issues other than famine and genocide. The point that I’m making here is that this issue in particular is about a campaign by some fairly wealthy people, on a trivial issue that the public does not care at all about, relating to an upmarket toy retailer that a large section of the populace do not and will never frequent.

There are – to put it very mildly – major presentational issues with this approach to campaigning. Posh stores’ gender policies are the perfect example of a minority-interest issue that enrages one small, fairly privileged section of the populace, while leaving the rest of the country cold, if not actually antagonised.

The tone of it puts my teeth on edge, so I can well imagine how this would go down with the general public if it were more widely publicised – Nice of the campaigners to worry about little Jemima’s shopping options, while a whole load of people are getting their p45s for Christmas.

You don’t have to be Kelvin MacKenzie to see how that’s going to go over in the papers, do you?

And a bit of disclosure, if people don’t know – I’m an occasional contributor here, so I’m loosely associated with the output of this website. That means I’m more concerned with the kind of stuff it produces than I am about the output of other sites, since I feel it reflects on me a bit.

That goes double when I’m writing stuff like this …Which says that the PC Brigade is largely a figment of the right-wing press’s imagination…

http://flyingrodent.blogspot.com/2011/12/concern-trolling-how-to.html

…And then I open a website that I contribute to and discover a gaggle of lefties are angry because some exclusive toyshop doesn’t mix its wares to match their gender politics.

I mean, I don’t expect everyone to agree with me all the time, but it’d be nice if a lot of you could refrain from making me look like quite so much of a clown, now and then.

@137 To be fair, even to the extent that this campaign represents the PC Brigade, it’s still massively different to the spectre raised by tabloids when they’re banging on about immigration or similar that you were discussing on your blog. I mean, you have to admit political correctness does exist in some form after all, since you can’t even write racial abuse with human excrement on someone’s car, without the politically correct brigade jumping down your throat. I tell ya, it’s political correctness gone mad!

(with apologies to Stewart Lee)

The problem is that the Left (for good or ill) are not a block of uniforms who believe/want/campaign for the same thing. We are a disparate group of people under a rather vague umbrella. The Right are concerned with a few touchstone issues, tax, Government, regulation, welfare, immigration and the like.

The Left, on the other hand are a full array of issues. There are people who are ‘on the Left’ regarding a single or perhaps a couple issues. The old joke about ‘Black Lesbian Disabled Women with cleft pallets against nuclear power’ rings true because that is what the Left are, small groups of otherwise voiceless people coming to together in order to be heard.

Let us go back thirty years when working class people were losing their livelihoods, how would you have reacted to ‘gay rights’ campaigners? People were losing their jobs and you are campaigning for men to be allowed to stick their willies up each other? Do you think Welsh miners were on picket lines and saying things like ‘oh at least the gays are getting recognition’.

You want to talk about being seen supporting campaigns that would put people off? You want to talk about supporting causes that are embarrassing to be seen with? You want to talk about having bigger fish to fry? Well try the gay right issue or even racial discrimination for that matter.

I don’t know how old you are, but let me tell you something; thirty years ago those issues were a hard cell. You could lose your job and perhaps your seat because you were gay and even standing up for gays would get you abuse. But people did it, even though it was unpopular, even when being gay was conflated was having AIDS and now, today gay people are out and proud.

They didn’t get there themselves, they got there because straight people were prepared to say unpopular things, put themselves up for ridicule and violence to get across the message that homosexuality is okay.

I have seen the Left retreat from so many positions, to the extent that unemployment and disability have been seen as vices and treated as outcasts and few of us are willing to put our necks on the line for those with little or no voice. It is hard to defend an illness M.E. when you are standing in front of screaming Tories, ridiculing you for supporting Middle class, pashmina wearing lazy teenagers, but does it make it wrong?

The Left have forgotten how to campaign, forgotten how to struggle, forgotten what it is like to stand up for others when the going gets tough. We need to relearn those skills in the comming two to three years or else we risk being wiped of the face of the political map. Well Laura Nelson hasn’t forgotten, even if her campaign looks a bit trivial for many of us. Perhaps she will be a Tory voter, BUT if (a big if) we listen to her and give her a fair hearing, PERHAPS she will listen to us and give us a fair hearing as well?

IF not, well it was worth a shot, but there is no point in expecting middle class voters to listen to us if we are ashamed to be seen giving them a voice on a blog, is there?

@138 – totally agree, well said. There is a real danger in a “your cause is making me look bad” style of arguing (quite aside from it being egotistical and assuming a false consensus and authority over legitimacy of campaigns)- ethics should come before politicking.

141. the a&e charge nurse

[140] no, the more important principle for some is that toystores should be free to do whatever they want providing they are within the law.

I would have some respect for the complainers if they had set up their OWN toy store and ran it with whatever sort of signage or products they felt were culturally appropriate – I suspect the reason they would never adopt such an approach is because it entails a great deal of work and would be financially risky – in short it would be too hard.

Hamleygate has resulted in no more than a minor inconvenience to a small business that will have approx 0.01% effect on the way toys continue to be marketed in the UK.

A&E @ 141

no, the more important principle for some is that toystores should be free to do whatever they want providing they are within the law.

And that is still the position. Hamleys are still able to do what ever they ant as long as it is within the law, nothing has changed.

I would have some respect for the complainers if they had set up their OWN toy store and ran it with whatever sort of signage or products they felt were culturally appropriate

If only Rosa Parks set up her own bus company, then there would be no need to sort out American segregation laws, eh?

No, it is not about just having a whole list of parallel services produced, is it? It is no good allowing the Daily Mail to tell lies about the disabled as long as the ‘truth’ is also published somewhere, or having a newspaper that doesn’t hack into murder victim’s phones alongside the Sun. Are ‘white only’ McDonalds okay, just as long as there are ‘black only’ alternative in the same street? Hey what about gay bashing? If you are attacked in the street for being gay, just use other streets as there are thousands of streets?

We expect everybody in society to adhere to the norms of society, rightly or wrongly. Surely we are attempting to change society for what we find to be ‘better’? For good or ill, Laura is attempting, perhaps one sign at a time, to change society and she wrote to the CEO of a toyshop. The signs, for whatever reason were subsequently changed. I am not saying that she is right or wrong, I am not saying you should accept what she is campaigning for. Christ I am not really saying that she was responsible for that change taking place, but is it really so bad that the signs in a shop have changed?

Tell me, because I cannot understand the issue here, why do you object to someone writing a letter to the CEO and the action advocated in that letter being carried out?

143. flyingrodent

The problem is that the Left (for good or ill) are not a block of uniforms who believe/want/campaign for the same thing. We are a disparate group of people under a rather vague umbrella.

This is true, and it means that we regularly disagree about issues and tactics. In this instance, I disagree about this issue and these tactics. That seems fairly straightforward, to me.

Let us go back thirty years when working class people were losing their livelihoods, how would you have reacted to ‘gay rights’ campaigners?

With encouragement, I’d hope. Let’s note at this point, however, that this is a bit of a dodge, isn’t it? It’s very similar to the “How can possibly we liberate women in the third world if children’s toys are placed in different sections of toy stores” argument above, which is the one that prompted the Rosa Parks comparison.

Let’s be blunt, shall we? Check these issues out…

1) The routine discrimination and oppression suffered by gay people in the UK until recent years;

2) The continuing, routine discrimination and oppression suffered by women in the third world and

3) Little Petunia having to climb an additional flight of stairs in an upmarket toy store so that her Mummy can buy her the present she wants.

One of these things is not like the others, and no amount of invocation of great civil rights struggle (x) is going to align option 3 with 1 and 2.

I have seen the Left retreat from so many positions, to the extent that unemployment and disability have been seen as vices and treated as outcasts and few of us are willing to put our necks on the line for those with little or no voice.

We’ve all seen the left retreat from so many positions. Sadly, these have almost all been on economic and employment issues.

On issues of rights and equality, the left has carried all before it for twenty years, and good news too. Nonetheless, I hope I’m not being too pessimistic when I say that the end result looks like being a non-discriminatory, gender-aware right to a shit McJob or a pittance on the dole.

In my opinion, much of the energy ploughed into Mumsnet freakouts and letter-writing campaigns to the BBC would be better spent elsewhere. But don’t worry! I won’t bring an AK47 to your house and force you to talk about unemployment at rifle-point! You can still have a go at retailers, if that’s what floats your boat.

One last time, then. These issues – Gender apartheid toy stores! Ignorant TV personalities! TV series about air hostesses! Burn them all! – are exciting. Why?

It’s precisely because they’re such trivial battles that makes them so tantalisingly winnable. That’s why they motivate a lot of agreement amongst small groups in a way that feels very rewarding, and the occasional payoff must feel great. Yes! We achieved something! We took on a toy store and won!

I understand entirely why these things wildly animate so many people, for five minutes, until some other new, new outrage comes along.

However. Securing an ungendered environment for the the children of the middle classes to shop in is not my idea of good tactics. If you think differently, well, knock yourself out. I’ve said so repeatedly and my reasoning is upthread, if you want another crack at it.

there is no point in expecting middle class voters to listen to us if we are ashamed to be seen giving them a voice on a blog, is there?

If only Liberal Conspiracy published writers who were prepared to defend the validity of middle class people’s opinions, on the basis that their beliefs and actions should not be dismissed because of their social status.

http://liberalconspiracy.org/2009/04/08/protests-and-trustafarians/

Oh, well.

@140 To be fair (once again), nothing at all prevented Hamleys from turning around and telling Laura to fuck right off before making the store even more segregated in response. Or just plain ignoring her. LibCon ain’t quite the feared juggernaught of progressive change that by having a post about their signage is going to cause Hamleys to shit itself and conform.

Next you’ll complaining about these people that write to their local MP’s for whatever minor issue is all up in their grill. I mean you can’t even hold a seat in parliament without all these namby-pamby busybodies pestering you about traffic light placements in front of schools! Fucking police state it is.

145. the a&e charge nurse

[142] “Tell me, because I cannot understand the issue here, why do you object to someone writing a letter to the CEO and the action advocated in that letter being carried out?” – letter writing is fine, Jim, it’s the hectoring I object to rather than bringing change about through example (such as opening a rival toy shop guided by your own cultural aspirations).

Presenting the change in signage as a ‘victory’ against ‘gender apartheid’ is a bit of a turn off, especially when the tactics amount to little more than a latter day example of Mary Whitehouse-ism.

Hamleys have been selling toys for over 200 years so I’m sure they’ll be able to navigate their way through this highly selective bit of politically correct nonsense?

FR @ 143

One of these things is not like the others, and no amount of invocation of great civil rights struggle (x) is going to align option 3 with 1 and 2.

Two issues, here. Firstly:

But the principle regarding the image it portrays regarding the Left to the wider public has been the same. During Eighties the Left were campaigning against the stop and search laws being used against black youths while OAPs were having centres being closed. Those OAPs mostly, at best, showed antipathy if not outright hostility, toward the latter, that did not make the use of stop and search any less of an outrage merely because such a campaign made us look like to tossers to those people who find racial intolerance acceptable. No doubt, at the time people made the same point that you are making, albeit it in a different manner. Something along the lines of ‘Why are we bothering with these darkies, when we have REAL problems with…’.

People have always trivialised other people’s issues as ‘not worth the effort’.

Secondly:

The social transformation in society is not one single monumental leap from homosexuality (for example) being a criminal offence and a social taboo to front bench MPs and CEOs being openly gay. It is a series of incremental steps from gay people being a figure of fun in ‘Are you being served’ to assumptions being challenged made about male teachers, etc. It is when people challenge the word ‘poof’ for someone who doesn’t drink beer and watch football, to the outright sacking of men who were thought of being a ‘homo’. Many of those tiny changes were dismissed as ‘Looney left’ (the eighties equivalent of PC gone mad) and not worth bothering about, but here we are. After a mere sixty years of slowly chipping away, piece by piece at the whole edifice, you can be gay and NOT be a hairdresser or an Air Steward.

So, no, changing the sign (not actually moving stuff up a flight of stairs) in a toy shop has not changed womens role in society, but forty years from now, perhaps it might look different?

Would America have elected a Black President had Rosa Parks went to the back
of the bus? Who knows?

@146. Jim:

That was 378 words and 2,123 characters of wind.

Hamleys changed their signs. That is all that we know as a fact.

Hamleys say that they were uninfluenced by the pink and blue argument, and that they changed their signs so that customers could navigate the store more easily. Given that Hamleys has nothing to lose by conceding to the pink and blue argument, we have to accept their explanation.

So any argument about influencing Hamleys or changing gender/sex perceptions is windbaggery.

Flying Rodent:

The point that I’m making here is that this issue in particular is about a campaign by some fairly wealthy people, on a trivial issue that the public does not care at all about, relating to an upmarket toy retailer that a large section of the populace do not and will never frequent.

What about the Early Learning Centre and Mothercare?

141: “no, the more important principle for some is that toystores should be free to do whatever they want providing they are within the law.”

No one’s saying it should be illegal.

It’s perfectly within the law to ask shops to do something – just as you have the right to leave a comment on this blog. And Hamleys have chosen to remove the signs. That’s their right, and their freedom to do so.

If you don’t like it, maybe you should be the one to start your own shop, where all products are neatly labelled “male” and “female” for those people evidently unable to buy a product unless this is done.

(And we might as well argue, by your logic, that if you don’t like this blog, you should be writing your own blog, rather than leaving comments on it.)

150. the a&e charge nurse

[149] perhaps you missed my comments about letter writing – at no stage have I suggested that people should not have the right to complain – rather my objection is to the mindset driving such complaints, and the portrayal of the change in signage as a victory for gender politics.

But as I say, complaining is easy, setting an example is far harder.

Incidentally, how did you determine that I do not like LC – is that a conclusion drawn because I have a different point of view to the OP?

@150: That’s not what you said originally – I was referring to your “I would have some respect for the complainers if they had set up their OWN toy store and ran it with whatever sort of signage or products they felt were culturally appropriate”.

If you’re back-pedalling to say that campaigning is okay after all, then fine. What is it you refer to as “hectoring”?

What “mindset” are you referring to – can we have specific examples from the article?

As for Mary Whitehouse-ism and political correct nonsense, all I see in the comments is people offended by Hamleys changing the signs. (Also, the particular problem with Whitehouse was the way she lobbied for censorship laws, which isn’t what’s going on here.)

“But as I say, complaining is easy, setting an example is far harder.”

As I say, why not set up your own shop, if you don’t like Hamleys’s new policy?

“Incidentally, how did you determine that I do not like LC”

I mean this article specifically. But the same back at you – why do you suppose that people don’t like Hamleys? People have no desire to compete with Hamleys and set up alternative shops, they just didn’t see why toys have to be labelled by one’s sex, and they are now pleased by the change.


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Y.G. Mitchell

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  2. Y.G. Mitchell

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  3. Y.G. Mitchell

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  4. Matthijs Krul

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  5. Matthijs Krul

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  6. Matthijs Krul

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  7. sunny hundal

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  8. sunny hundal

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  9. Charlie Owen

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  10. Charlie Owen

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  11. Rosie

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  12. Rosie

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  13. David

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  14. David

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  15. Twinkle

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  16. Twinkle

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  17. Emmeline Lawless

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  18. Emmeline Lawless

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  19. sunny hundal

    …Hamleys claim they were planning to change signs anyway. Sure. Story also in today's FT. @Delilah_mj blog – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  20. sunny hundal

    …Hamleys claim they were planning to change signs anyway. Sure. Story also in today's FT. @Delilah_mj blog – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  21. flyingrodent

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  22. flyingrodent

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  23. Amanda Tucker

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  24. Adam Smith

    …Hamleys claim they were planning to change signs anyway. Sure. Story also in today's FT. @Delilah_mj blog – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  25. Susanna Garforth

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  26. goldenavenger1

    Was just talking the other day about how despicable Hamley's gender stereotypes are. Success! http://t.co/U3mfAkyS via @libcon

  27. Nico Rjinders

    …Hamleys claim they were planning to change signs anyway. Sure. Story also in today's FT. @Delilah_mj blog – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  28. Della Mirandola

    “@sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys 4 boys/girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/UOnj6HxY”<<congrats

  29. Soho Politico

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  30. Nicolas Chinardet

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  31. Dave Trew

    "@libcon: Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/GH2muSBz&quot; Well done Hamleys 4 listening. Unlike gov'ts

  32. Martin Coxall

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/rGODMhNM

  33. jen lewis

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  34. jen lewis

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  35. Lesley Adams

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  36. Lesley Adams

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  37. Raji Chaggar

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  38. Raji Chaggar

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  39. Dave Ward

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  40. Lesley Adams

    “@libcon: Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/eCETBjZ8” fantastic. Let's hope more shops follow.

  41. small matryoshka

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  42. Karen Muldoon

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/rGODMhNM

  43. poorbastardmarvin

    RT @libcon Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/7k41FaGW << Getting to the crux of evil in society

  44. Finchampstead Boy

    RT @libcon Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/7k41FaGW << Getting to the crux of evil in society

  45. Meghan Benton

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  46. Zoe Margolis

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  47. Holly Dustin

    Great work by @delilaj_mj to get Hamleys to remove gende # stereotyped signs! http://t.co/l8vRlhxZ /via @libcon

  48. Fiona

    Just heard about the campaign to end Gender Stereotyping aimed at the famous Toy Store Hamley's and the recent… http://t.co/TQeptnIB

  49. Natasha

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  50. Lucie M Goulet

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  51. Liz James

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  52. DahlFace

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  53. To Palovi

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  54. Quarries & Corridors

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  55. Charlotte George

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  56. Robin

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  57. Edith S

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  58. Paul

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  59. Deep

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  60. Monika Neall

    "@sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/5GgUa6v8&quot; hurrah!

  61. Jess Wardman

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  62. Chris Coltrane

    Read for another reason to love Iceland! RT @libcon: Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/qpqeXUG3

  63. Adele Taylor

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  64. Mumsnet Towers

    Hamleys de-genders toy signs after campaign by @delilah_mj; what do you think? http://t.co/2arODQJA #hamleysgendercampaign

  65. Ali C

    Awesome! Now I can love Hamleys unreservedly! Hamleys changes gendered signs: http://t.co/lE6fh17k (via @chris_coltrane)

  66. Chloe Cavedon

    Great work by @delilaj_mj to get Hamleys to remove gende # stereotyped signs! http://t.co/l8vRlhxZ /via @libcon

  67. Bileys Mullet

    "@sunny_hundal: Story also in today's FT. @Delilah_mj blog – http://t.co/SPbZFGOW&quot; ~> does it REALLY matter? Jeeeeeezz.

  68. Iris van Rooij

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  69. Ruth Oswald

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls'. http://t.co/opRUbGdj Although, I guess, the de facto blue/pink divide remains.

  70. Laura F

    Hamleys de-genders toy signs after campaign by @delilah_mj; what do you think? http://t.co/2arODQJA #hamleysgendercampaign

  71. Cheerful One

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  72. Mathilda Gregory

    Read for another reason to love Iceland! RT @libcon: Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/qpqeXUG3

  73. Sandi Sidhu

    Hamleys de-genders toy signs after campaign by @delilah_mj; what do you think? http://t.co/2arODQJA #hamleysgendercampaign

  74. CreativeCornerCafe

    Read for another reason to love Iceland! RT @libcon: Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/qpqeXUG3

  75. Robert Andrew Grant

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  76. doeeyedcabbage

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  77. Charlie Owen

    @thefworduk The one about Hamley's removing gender indicators on toys? http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  78. Helen Simmons

    Hamleys de-genders toy signs after campaign by @delilah_mj; what do you think? http://t.co/2arODQJA #hamleysgendercampaign

  79. The F-Word

    So good I'll post it twice :) "@SonniesEdge: @thefworduk The one about Hamley's removing gender indicators on toys? http://t.co/UiBXVYeN&quot;

  80. Susan Frances Orton

    So good I'll post it twice :) "@SonniesEdge: @thefworduk The one about Hamley's removing gender indicators on toys? http://t.co/UiBXVYeN&quot;

  81. Julie Cohen

    Read for another reason to love Iceland! RT @libcon: Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/qpqeXUG3

  82. Josie Thaddeus-Johns

    So good I'll post it twice :) "@SonniesEdge: @thefworduk The one about Hamley's removing gender indicators on toys? http://t.co/UiBXVYeN&quot;

  83. Sean

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  84. Inge

    @GenderDiary Success! http://t.co/h7ViYXAJ yay!

  85. Mathilda Gregory

    I used to go to Hamelys every year for my Xmas present. Thanks for this one, Hamleys http://t.co/Bupdb1tg

  86. Jennifer McMahon

    I think this is pretty awesome. Hamleys change signs for boys and girls http://t.co/rmCjjQCV via @libcon

  87. MarinaS

    @thefworduk MT @sunny_hundal
    Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/zpPsxTuE

  88. Debbie Timmins

    I think this is pretty awesome. Hamleys change signs for boys and girls http://t.co/rmCjjQCV via @libcon

  89. Jaz McDougall

    I think this is pretty awesome. Hamleys change signs for boys and girls http://t.co/rmCjjQCV via @libcon

  90. Kaye Elling

    I think this is pretty awesome. Hamleys change signs for boys and girls http://t.co/rmCjjQCV via @libcon

  91. Laura King

    Hamleys de-genders toy signs after campaign by @delilah_mj; what do you think? http://t.co/2arODQJA #hamleysgendercampaign

  92. R-A

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  93. Steph G

    I think this is pretty awesome. Hamleys change signs for boys and girls http://t.co/rmCjjQCV via @libcon

  94. Anne-Marie

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  95. Anne-Marie

    RT @doctorrah: RT @libcon: Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/2OeMRIyd

  96. Darryl

    I still don't know if this is some weird joke or not. http://t.co/jE7Rb5Qu

  97. Sam Carelse

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/rGODMhNM

  98. Kat

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  99. Janet McKnight

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  100. Elaine

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  101. Andrew Reimann

    This is cool. “@libcon: Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/iM4gfXt0”

  102. Emily

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  103. Amy Mollett

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/EN8vQ5DB via @libcon

  104. Steven Sumpter

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  105. Kirsty-Fay

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  106. Greig Sinclair

    We can all sleep peacefully tonight! http://t.co/9N31U4P3

  107. Vicky B

    Yay Hamleys have swapped stupid gender labels4activity ones on toys:)Via @SonniesEdge http://t.co/foIHT5SX #genderbinary #gender #progress

  108. Sapna Shah

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  109. Abbi Osbiston

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  110. Lauren Alesandra

    @RonTailor Me neither. Here's the article btw – http://t.co/xJ39xikw Like… I'm curvy.. there's no hiding i'm a chick.. that's wrong now?

  111. Charlie Wand

    This makes me happy http://t.co/pGmPoQPI #nongenderbinary

  112. Ron Taylor

    We all realize there's no erasing genders, right? Like, we all know NATURE won't allow it, right? RIGHT?! http://t.co/2bkTIBHM via @fozzness

  113. Ed Bennett

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  114. Charlie Wand

    This makes me happy, Hamleys change signs so that they are non-gender specific. #genderbinary http://t.co/vEWXsviH

  115. Elizabeth Gibney

    Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  116. Dave Pickering

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/OQHPgSOW via @libcon

  117. @totsprams.com

    Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/bFKpkeB3 via @libcon
    nice post http://t.co/USNPtfyM

  118. AVA

    Hamleys change gendered signs – yay! http://t.co/McfLUQsO

  119. sara mok

    Hamleys, de grootste (en meest AWESOME) speelgoedwinkel van Londen, haalt de bordjes voor 'meisjesspeelgoed' weg http://t.co/ypv8yFBR

  120. Kate Lucy

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  121. Verity Allan

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  122. Ali King

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign http://t.co/ZmghlYzO

  123. Julia Deakin

    Yay! RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by @Delilah_mj – http://t.co/8eCCdWsc

  124. Tracey

    Whooooops and here the link if you haven't seen it http://t.co/GeEhlDFg

  125. Bileys Mullet

    http://t.co/SPbZFGOW ~> sorry to rt this again but am i alone in thinking this is ridiculous ?

  126. Juliann

    Hamley's remove all gender indicators on toys, instead listing by type/activity. #genderbinary #gender #progress http://t.co/VEXK5zsj

  127. Fleur

    @preciouschica85 dit al gezien? :) http://t.co/mYdIzbsA

  128. Georgie Agass

    Success! Hamleys change signs for boys and girls after campaign | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/3I1CmGDg via @libcon

  129. Niall Harrison

    @tansyrr also saw this earlier today and thought of your toy shopping adventures http://t.co/UMTHg1mf

  130. Helen Robinson

    AMAZING RT @sunny_hundal: Success! Hamleys toyshop changes 'toys for boys & girls' signs after campaign by@Delilah_mj – http://t.co/vqL66Gb5

  131. Martin Paul Hume

    …Hamleys claim they were planning to change signs anyway. Sure. Story also in today's FT. @Delilah_mj blog – http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  132. Michael Moran

    Now our economy and climate are completely fine, let's get onto the evils of boys & girls liking different stuff: http://t.co/la1kxcFP

  133. Straight Bat

    Now our economy and climate are completely fine, let's get onto the evils of boys & girls liking different stuff: http://t.co/la1kxcFP

  134. jorjun

    Now our economy and climate are completely fine, let's get onto the evils of boys & girls liking different stuff: http://t.co/la1kxcFP

  135. sunny hundal

    Daily Mail reports on Hamleys changing gendered signs for toys http://t.co/8329d3qd nicks half the content from LC post http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  136. Hank Spears

    Daily Mail reports on Hamleys changing gendered signs for toys http://t.co/8329d3qd nicks half the content from LC post http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  137. Sophie Earnshaw

    Daily Mail reports on Hamleys changing gendered signs for toys http://t.co/8329d3qd nicks half the content from LC post http://t.co/NF7sGLsd

  138. Link Loving 15.12.11 « Casper ter Kuile

    [...] Campaign win against Hamley’s gender stereotyping for Laura Nelson. [...]

  139. Matt Westcott

    Let's see how the whole "boys' toys versus girls' toys" thing has been working out lately: http://t.co/2V9Rx25k http://t.co/A0VsoofW

  140. UllaTornemandLarsen

    One small victory against sexist stereotypes! @libcon http://t.co/iIvB9K1F #sexism #gender #stereotypes #fem2 #equality http://t.co/0EW0hlec

  141. Mariko Shirai

    @SunazawaJin @arimoto_kaori @Siranlre @yukilundeberg @toden8800?"A step in the right direction"?????????????????B&A?? ??http://t.co/KvLfEM5U

  142. Is your child normal or is he a girl? | Edinburgh Eye

    [...] from comments left and right, it matters. Advertisement GA_googleAddAttr("AdOpt", "1"); GA_googleAddAttr("Origin", [...]





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