UN Ads Point Out How Bizarrely Sexist Google Searches Are

un-women-auto-complete-shows-what-internet-thinks-of-women-3The auto-complete suggestions on Google searches are often good for a laugh, but they can also provide some measure of insight into the scary collective psyche of the Internet. And a new series of ads from the United Nations uses these auto-complete results in an effort to demonstrate just how pervasive some sexist attitudes are.

The ads each feature a photo of a different woman with her mouth covered over by what the UN claims are actual Google search results for various phrases about women.

For instance, one search that starts with “Women need to” is auto-completed with stone-age sentiments like “be put in their place,” and “be disciplined,” while simply typing in “Women should” auto-completed with suggestions like “be slaves” and “not speak at church.”

“The ads are shocking because they show just how far we still have to go to achieve gender equality,” says the copy writer from the Dubai-based agency that created the ads for the UN. “They are a wake up call, and we hope that the message will travel far.”

You can see each of the ads by clicking on the smaller images below:


Out of curiosity, we repeated these searches and did the same searches replacing “Women” with “Men” to see what Google searchers thinks about males. Here are the results we got at around noon ET on Oct. 23, 2013:
1. Women should:
“not be in combat”
“stay home”
“not preach”
“not speak in church”
“be seen and not heard”

Men should:
“always pray”
“not get married”
“wear makeup”
“pay for dates”
“be what they seem”

2. Women shouldn’t:
“be in combat”
“be cops”
“go to college”

Men shouldn’t:
“wear shorts”
“wear flip flops”
“be jealous”
“hit women”

3. Women cannot:
“be pastors”
“have it all”
“teach men”
“find husbands”

Men cannot:
“be feminists”
“be trusted”
“get HIV from women”
“pick up chair”
“live without women”

4. Women need to:
“shut up”
“grow up”
“be wanted”
“feel safe”
“know about men”

One relatively positive search, which was not included in the ads, that we did come up with was for “Women can…”
Women can:
“have it all”
“see more colors”
“vote in America”

[via BoredPanda]

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