August 8, 2022

‘Assuming the only women involved in the making of this was the actress’

A recent Samsung running advert promoting their latest Galaxy fitness watch and earbuds has sparked controversy online as many women feel it does not portray an accurate female experience.

In the advert below, a woman can be seen running alone at 2am down darkened streets, briefly interacting with random people in the city, one of which is another woman who looks on in admiration – almost as if inspired.

The suggestion seems to be that women should feel empowered to live their life according to their own schedule: ‘night owls’ going for a jog late at night being the chosen example.

However women’s safety group Reclaim These Streets have described the running advert as “totally tone deaf”, especially in the light of the numerous female death such as Sarah Everard, Sabina Nessa and, more specifically, Ashling Murphy, who was killed while out on run in January this year.

As many on social media have pointed out, this kind of scenario is “not representing truth for women” in most cases and the vast majority of women would never risk going out alone at 2am for a run – and certainly not with headphones in.

Others have slammed the company for portraying what they perceive as an unrepresentative and dangerous suggestion.

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Almost everyone involved in the online discussion has suggested that they believe that no other females could have been involved in the making of the ad – besides its female star – which is currently still being aired on terrestrial television, certain streaming sites and on YouTube.

Viewers have highlighted sections such as the moment in which the woman is approached by a stranger on a bike as provoking genuine unease and anxiety, with one commenter suggesting that it turns a very serious, real-world problem into a more stylish “Nordic Noir” for the sake of selling a few smartwatches.

Speaking to Radio 1 Newsbeat, a representative from Samsung explained that they never intended for their advert to “be insensitive to ongoing conversations around women’s safety.”

They continued, adding “We apologise for how this may have been received,” and “The ‘Night Owls’ campaign was designed with a positive message in mind: to celebrate individuality and freedom to exercise at all hours.”

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