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Arts and Culture

Pepsi Amps Up the Sexism with Pickup App

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Posted on Oct 14, 2009
Amp Up Before You Score
iTunes

PepsiCo Inc. ran into trouble trying to be all hip and stuff with an iPhone app aimed at young male consumers of Amp energy drink. It was bad enough that the app was built around the charming idea of bagging 24 different types of women—e.g., “the sorority girl” or the ever-imaginative “cougar”—and then posting the conquests online. Almost worse was the company’s Twittered apology after reception of its “Amp Up Before You Score” app fell flat, to put it mildly.  —KA

PC World’s “Tech Inciter”:

What caveman came up with the idea to use an iPhone app to offer pickup lines and track female “conquests” that could then be posted to the user’s—in all senses of the word—social networking pages? Isn’t there a jail someplace for these people?

And what happened to Apple’s approval process for iPhone apps, that sometimes does and sometimes don’t seem to stop “bad taste” apps like this one?

PepsiCo, which owns the energy drink brand the application is promoting, has fallen over itself apologizing online, but is still offering the app for download.

“Our app tried 2 show the humorous lengths guys go 2 pick up women. We apologize if it’s in bad taste & appreciate your feedback. #pepsifail,” the company said on Twitter.

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By "G"utless "W"itless Hitler, October 19, 2009 at 7:47 am Link to this comment

Oh, like it’s some kind of accomplishment for a woman to pick up a man.  Look at a guy for more than two seconds and he’ll be on you like an ape on samsonite.

By Valkyrie607, October 17 at 6:31 pm #
(Unregistered commenter)

Where’s the app for adventurous women trying to pick up lots of different men? Where can I post my “brag list”?

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By Frank, October 18, 2009 at 5:11 pm Link to this comment

Is it mere coincidence that in the image above,  the Bookworm, Aspiring Actress,
and Artist are all blond haired white women, and the Athlete is black?

I’d be interested in seeing the full spectrum of possible ‘conquest’ photos to see if
there are any other indicators of stereotypes there.

Not that it would offend me if there were, but I would it particularly funny to
watch Pepsi’s panicked damage control kick into overdrive if someone brings up
the “R word”.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, October 18, 2009 at 9:22 am Link to this comment

With the end of sexism and now equality for all, men should be made to wear high heels.

Now days they do not need high heels for torture, all they have to do is tie people to chairs and force them watch Palin speeches!

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By Valkyrie607, October 17, 2009 at 3:31 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Where’s the app for adventurous women trying to pick up lots of different men? Where can I post my “brag list”? Last night I took home an aspiring major league baseball player. Last week it was a computer programmer. I want the world to know!

...Oh, I forgot—women who chalk up “conquests” like men do are shamed. They’re sluts, not studs. No company would ever think of creating such an app for women!

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By Kay Johnson, October 15, 2009 at 9:55 am Link to this comment

montanawildhack: I want to comment about what you stated about high heels in your post:

First, I don’t know why women want to wear them, either. High heels are bad for the feet, the legs and the hips—they are UNhealthy. Throughout my life, I’ve been told by men that it’s all about the shape of the “calf” of the leg, which is the reason why men like women in heels, and the reason women wear them.

Each fall, and each spring, here in NYC, I pass by shoe stores, and I swear, each season, the heels get higher. However, here in the city, I don’t see many women walking on the streets in heels. It’s probably a night-time phenomenon. Or, it’s tourists—who I do see wearing them. I have a smaller foot, and I swear—the heels are about as high as my foot is long. I refuse to wear them! I’d probably topple over if I put them on and tried to walk.

However, during the 1980s, I worked in middle and upper-level management jobs, and one of the items in my job description was that I—“had to wear pumps when I was at work, every minute of the work day.” At the time, I worked in restaurant management, and if you know anything about restaurant management, you will be aware that we are on our feet a good part of the day, and we work long hours, too. Therefore, I bought a very nice pair of white flats, and a pair of black flats to wear duing the non-rush hours. I kept them at work inside MY desk—but someone took them, and they were never returned to me. When it came time for my performance review, I was down-graded for NOT wearing pumps all the time. Quite frankly, I was astonished, and thought my boss—the top man—must be joking, but he wasn’t.

White men made the rules at the hotel where I worked, and if I wanted the job, that was part of the deal. No choice!

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By Leefeller, October 15, 2009 at 7:44 am Link to this comment

I guess texting isn’t helping social skills?

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By montanawildhack, October 15, 2009 at 4:40 am Link to this comment

Mr. Coursey is so brave… Imagine having the courage to suggest boycotting Pepsi products and only drinking Coke products???  The add is sexually offensive to women!!! So what!!!! What add on TV (and the media in general) isn’t for Christ’s sake????  Have you seen the add for Korean Airlines??? Jesus, I own pornography less suggestive than that… How ‘bout the add for Jimmy John’s subs???  Starts out with 2 unmarried humans fucking in a hotel room….  Let’s spend our time and resourses worried about things that matter…. Plus, if women were above being anything but sex objects High heels never would have made a comeback…  “Hey, look at me.. I’m wearing shoes that were used for torture during the Spanish Inquisition… Don’t they make me look pretty??? Lavish money on me and I’ll see if you’re worthy of planting your seed in me.”

If there are any women I haven’t offended, I apologize from the bottom of my heart….

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