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Think Super Bowl Ads Are Sexist? There's An App For That

Just because they've spent millions of dollars to air them during the Super Bowl doesn't mean that advertisers are aware of how offensive some of their ads are.

I have to admit, I distract my daughters with the Puppy Bowl at Super Bowl time because I'd just rather not expose them to dozens of ads about erectile dysfunction side by side with ads that show scantily-clad women. Especially with an impressionable tween, I think that the messages that are sent regarding female attractiveness, value as a sexual object and the overwhelming focus on testerone can warp their own sense of self.

Apparently, I'm not alone, because there's now an app that will allow people to tell advertisers that this is not the way to attract their business:

On Sunday night, an estimated 110 million people will tune into the Super Bowl. About half of that group will watch the game primarily for the commercials, which have become an iconic part of the quintessentially American tradition — and which are typically served up with a healthy dose of sexist representations of women.

But this year, those Americans will have the power to call out sexism when they see it.

A new smartphone app from The Representation Project, a group that seeks to expose sexism and injustice in the media, provides the tools for Super Bowl viewers to target the companies airing offensive ads. The “Not Buying It” app allows users to upload images of sexist media and tweet critiques directly at the brands behind the ad campaigns. GPS technology keeps track of where the most engaged communities of people are located, allowing them to make connections for potential acts of protest. The app also ranks which media its users are currently finding most offensive.

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