Council of Paris approves citywide ban of sexist outdoor advertisements

Council of Paris approves citywide ban of sexist outdoor advertisements
Source: Getty Images
Source: Getty Images

Sexism will no longer sell in Paris. 

On Tuesday, the Council of Paris voted for a citywide advertising contract that will ban "sexist and discriminatory" ads, according to Business Insider. Starting Nov. 20, 2017, outdoor advertising company JCDecaux will face a moratorium on campaigns that propagate sexist, homophobic, ageist, ethnic and religious discrimination, along with "degrading" or "dehumanizing" depictions of people and "images that adversely affect human dignity."

In a press release, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo explained that peer cities like London and Geneva had already instituted similar measures, and it was time for Paris to take similar steps toward halting the "spread, promotion and valorization of images that degrade certain categories of citizens."

Saint Laurent's Fall 2017 ad campaign stirred controversy in Paris for positioning young women in ways many people found degrading and way oversexualized.
Source: Jacques Demarthon/Getty Images

According to BI, Saint Laurent's "porno chic" ad campaign for its fall 2017 season triggered the decision. The campaign's imagery featured very thin, fishnet-clad women in stiletto roller skates, splay-legged and draped over furniture. The Guardian reported that viewers criticized the advertisements as "incitement to rape," the French feminist group Oséz le Feminisme! demanding the "extremely violent" ads be removed.  

"It [the campaign] ticks all the sexist boxes," Oséz le Feminisme! spokesperson Raphaëlle Rémy-Leleu told the Guardian. "The women are objectified, hyper-sexualized and put in submissive positions."

In her statement, Hidalgo condemned advertising that teaches women that degradation is acceptable.

"The consequences of these degrading representations have an important impact on women, notably the younger ones," Hidalgo said. "They keep sexism standard and help trivialize a certain form of everyday violence."