Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Ladies, here's what Victory Poker thinks of you

Oh, will you now?

Back in college, I remember sitting in one of those introductory communications classes called "Mass Media and Society" or something of that ilk. We had an assignment to analyze advertising messages and were given pages torn out of magazines to analyze. I can't remember what my own ad was but when I laid eyes on Victory Poker's campaign, I flashed right back to Fisk Hall.

The men in this image are the only ones with seats at the table and cards in front of them. The women are draped around their shoulders like accessories. They aren't playing the game, they're only interested in their men-- and their men don't appear to be interested in them at all for the moment. While each man has a distinctive "look" and personal style, blonde women all have strikingly similar appearances and the brunettes could be twins. The message here is that women do not have a place at the poker table. It's a place for men to play and women to watch. I mean, the women don't even have chairs to sit in! The one in the middle that looks like that plastic surgery chick from The Hills is confined to Andrew Robl's lap.

I understand marketing. I'm extremely pragmatic. And I understand that the online poker market is overwhelmingly young males. Victory Poker is capitalizing on the perception people have of these particular pro endorsers' jet-setting, nightclubbing Vegas lifestyles. And that might get them some customers. Hell, it might get them a whole lot of customers. I just hope that the female players out there think twice about supporting a site that obviously thinks so little of them. I've always had a lot more respect for the online sites (coughPokerStarscough) who haven't ever found the need to resort to such shameless marketing tactics and have instead relied on the quality of their product.

I also read this morning that the WSOP's Milwaukee's Beast No-Limit Lounge or whatever the fuck they called it last year has been renamed "The Man-Cave." While my inner feminist was initially fired up over this as well, I've decided to let the WSOP have their man-cave. Women are too smart to drink that flavorless piss of a beer. I also have the sneaking suspicion that if Jeffrey Pollack was still the commissioner of the WSOP, the unfortunate moniker would have been done away with. Miss you, commish.

I'm used to being a woman in an overwhelmingly male-dominated field. I've done it my whole life. I just hoped we'd come a little further than crap like this.

17 comments:

Waldo's Wild Kingdom said...

"I also read this morning that the WSOP's Milwaukee's Beast No-Limit Lounge or whatever the fuck they called it last year has been renamed "The Man-Cave." While my inner feminist was initially fired up over this as well, I've decided to let the WSOP have their man-cave. Women are too smart to drink that flavorless piss of a beer."

Thank the lord, so are most educated men over 30.

Rakewell said...

My thoughts on the Victory ad:
http://pokergrump.blogspot.com/2010/04/one-of-these-things-is-not-like-others.html

Irongirl01 said...

Totally agree with you. I really never have had an issue being the only gal at things. Heck I was the only girl on the cross country team my senior year and was co-captain. Been fortunate that my boyfriends have always respected me and known I can hold my own with the guys. I am a guys girl. But shit like this that gets me going. Funny I never really define myself as a feminist.

women make a majority of purchasing decisions not only for themselves but for their families. We can boycott Victory Poker and place our poker dollars elsewhere. Punish the site for their Neanderthal attitudes.

Terry "mrreed" Reed said...

Equally offensive is the poor schmoe on the right who is being elbowed out by the hotties in question. The implication being that when you are chip dead, you also become dickus non gratus. As a player who is often chip poor, I take exception!

Short-Stacked Shamus said...

Good points, all. Victory clearly trying to outBodog Bodog, it seems.

Interesting what you say about the men having distinct styles and the women all looking alike. As a guy who doesn't fit the "young gun" mold of these characters, I might say they kind of all look alike to me as well... but it is def. true each is presented here as a distinct personality (and rep. of Victory). And yr read of the message seems correct, i.e., to say women cannot be players.

The point about the women looking alike made me think of an article by Deborah Tannen called "Marked Women" (written some time ago, like 15 yrs.?). There she argued men have the freedom to go "unmarked" (e.g., dress/act in ways that do not distinguish them) while women are automatically "marked" by their dress, hair, behavior, etc.

Not sure how that relates here, but thought it interesting that the world presented in the ad kind operates in the opposite way (men all distinct; women all same) -- maybe it is further evidence the ad is obv. a fantasy.

girlpower said...

Wow- I understand the point you are trying to make but did you have to insult women while trying to defend them? Your negative remarks about the lady on Roble's lap are completely uncalled for. You should examine your own sterotypes before worring about Victory poker's. Your point could have been made in a professional manner. I look forward to your next post about how all the revlon ads are unfair while only featuring women? Surely your goal is is not one dimensional? I mean I'm sure Victory poker, while trying to stay a float, will be determined by the small percent of poker players that are women.

pokerpeaker said...

Jeez, lighten up babe. What's your problem? Har har har har har.

Actually, I agree with you 100 percent. Not only are these ads sexist, they're boring. They are so unoriginal. The only problem is I think they're probably effective.

Drizztdj said...

Why aren't the women having a lingerie pillow fight on the felt?

This baffles me as this happens at my $5 SnG home game every week!

Overdone ad circa Bodog 2005.

And per girlpower's comments, I don't see a critque of the women's looks from Change, she merely pointed out a resemblance to an actress and other's hair colors.

One more note, Revlon needs to bring back Cindy Crawford. Please.

Drizztdj said...

To further the comment to girlpoker what is your perception of the women in the ad?

Do you think the girl in Robl's lap is interested in his view of Western European politics? Think the blonde wants to know "The Maven's" secret recipe to the perfect T-bone glaze? The Magician's lady definitely wants to see some chip tricks!

I see pretty girls not playing, wearing cocktail dresses hovering over the action. You take a guess as to what they really want in the context of that picture.

Here's a hint: It's not to play poker.

EN09 said...

I married not only a strong woman, but a successful woman whom was just honored in Chicago for achieving the Top 1% in her field of a male dominated sector. 1% of 7,000 professionals that is! She hates da pokerz tho! LOL

Never have been attracted to the type of women you initially described. Once upon a time did date a very attractive brunette - who was a "pleaser" in every sense of the term. Didn't last very long.

Nice poast Change!

Trisha Lynn said...

Great stuff, Change100. It's so freaking sad that in this day and age, women can still feel as if they're not at an equal level to men in certain fields of entertainment or hobby-sports like poker.

I'm not a great poker player, and I'm not about to sign up for an online pay-sites any time soon, but I do know which one I'm not going with...

Dantana said...

great stuff change. enjoyed the ride back to memories of Fisk Hall ... and Mary Ann Weston, I believe, was my prof for the media and mass communications in society class.

the questions it raises for me are:

1) as a guy, am i still allowed to like tits? (even if they're attached to a brain?)

2) is the problem the guys with a sweet-tooth for sugar-tits, or the girls who pursue careers as arm candy?

clearspine said...

The irony is that guys who believe this foolish stereotype are the ones being totally suckered, as young women are cleaning the clocks of young men across the board in academic achievement, college attendance and graduation rates and overall success in life. "Failure to launch" happens at least partly because boys are winding up living in idiotic fantasies like the one in this ad, rather than focusing on actually creating something of value in their lives. Sad.....

AgSweep said...

What piss poor marketing. While I can understand trying to appeal to the largest sector of your market I have to think it is poor form to offend other sectors. "Man Cave'? Let's think this through based upon the stereotypes presented to us. If men are the ones sitting at the poker tables their drinks are free. (edited out 'brought to them by scantily clad women,less clothes more tips...how to separate men from their money). Who would be buying beer? The women sweating them, most of whom would hesitate going into something called 'man cave' Marketing FAIL.

If a company doesn't want to market to me then fine, I don't want their product. And as 'Mom' I am the consumer you really want to market to. (6 ipods, 3 gaming systems, 20 cell phones (damn toliets), 2 cars, need I go on?)

As for poker, frankly I would rather sit at a table of 20 something guys with hoodies and sunglasses than at a table with all women of any age, that would scare the bejebus out of me.

Jennifer said...

Nice! Thought you also might enjoy my blog post, "Leveling Victory Poker" http://jennifershahade.com/site/2010/05/04/leveling-victory-poker/
Jennifer

Dennison said...

I agree with your comments. The weird thing about all this is that Lupe Soto who runs LIPS and says she is an advocate for ladies in poker is the Promotions Manager of Victory Poker. That's why the lips tie in with Victory.

Lupe Soto says to contact her about Victory Poker in this lips video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sA6IVWj-rxU&feature=player_embedded. She is also the contact person for their rakeback program according to affiliate listings.

Karma bit them though as in June they tried to run satellites for the lips u.s. ladies poker championship and no surprise? They were cancelled as very few women entered.

drnorman said...

Well, Change 100, time for a change. As terrific as your writing is, I think that your skills could be put to greater use. You have not wasted any time in your poker career. Rather, you have become a different person.

You, are blessed with skills that could be applied to many fields. I realize that a paycheck comes first, but second comes a PLAN, a plan to move forward into other realms of writing or whatever you choose.

Your insight, obvious writing talent, experience, innovation, lack of tolerance for bs,ability to dedicate yourself to multi-tasking, and etc. are not characterisitcs commonly found in one person.

Keep on keeping on...your day will come. DrPauly is well on his way. You too have all of what you need if only you can find the right path.