This week on the web, unlooker.com posted a promotional video by Dove called “Selfies.”

I actually have mixed reactions to this video. On one hand, I think it’s wonderful how they are promoting the idea that everyone is beautiful and that many women have insecurities (not just teens.) But on the other hand, I see it as a marketing strategy by Dove and I’m not completely convinced that they have the best intentions for girls and women at heart as ultimately, they are still a corporation trying to make money. To me, the promotion of “true beauty” is just their marketing ploy. Call me a skeptic but the fact that they splash it all over the internet suggests marketing over any other reason.

Since this is such a current issue and I think it will be excellent fodder for discussion in my grade ten applied English class, I’m looking for help from the public. I’m using this with the Media Studies strand expectation 1.4 “Audience Responses” and I would love for some feedback for my students. I would love if people commented in this post or tweeted back what kind of “audience” they are (parent, teacher, student, male, female, or whatever audience deemed appropriate, etc) with a personal response to this video and concept. Feel free to include your own selfie too!

Thank you in advance and here is a selfie just for fun.

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7 thoughts on “Selfies -response to the unlooker.com video

  1. I’m kind of with you. Dove has received both applause and flack for their videos that attempt to redefine beauty. There are some useful messages there for certain and for many young girls provides a new context to their world view. Yet, as many point out, it still is a emphasis on physical attributes with an uncomfortable link to a corporation.

    The idea of selfies, beyond this focus on beauty remains another fascinating idea. Many dismiss it as narcissism, others see it as a way we build and craft identity. I think both perspectives are valid and intention and context is important. We have great discussions about selfies in our family. My youngest daughter, 15, of course has the most, although compared to many of her friends, she’s a minimal offender. We often call on ourselves as “selfie police” when we see any of us, including myself, post one. For the most part, for us, it’s harmless fun.

  2. The Dove/Axe conglomerate only underlies the sense of deception in this. http://dovevsaxe.blogspot.ca/

    If anyone finds self worth through Dove, then it’s a marketing ploy. If they find self worth regardless then it’s a good thing.

    The selfie is a result of technical progress. Given a choice, we’d all rather produce our own portraits – it lets us integrate other aspects of our personality into photographs of ourselves. To call it narcissism is dismissive.

    Here’s one! https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-Lw7-NuQ3WQo/UnhNq5FUS-I/AAAAAAAASsM/4aUjCZLZ0k4/s256-no/a55b3631-ef6d-4380-9d65-c056041815cb

  3. Jamie, this is one issue that I can clearly see at least both sides of the fence! Every technology that has come along has enabled us to do things previously unavailable. In the big scheme of things, the concept of a selfie is relatively new and I think that those who take selfies are continuing to experiment and refine the technique. That a company exploits the technology is inevitable. You can be assured that their PR Departments will be gauging the response. It would be interesting to see if they would provide insights for your class.

    BTW, all the best for next week.

  4. I would first like to say thank you for mentioning our site. I’m one of the founders of Unlooker.com and personally posted this video. I didn’t look at it as deeply as you did but I find your take interesting. After thinking about it for a few I think I’ll first just ask this question…Does it matter? They are going to be in the business of selling soap products regardless of whether they’re using a positive marketing message or not…so isn’t it just a positive that they are taking a positive approach? We have no skin in this game, we weren’t paid nor do we work for or with Dove. We are merely a viral site that liked the message of that video. Feel free to reach out with a reply I’d love to discuss this with you. Demographic information 35 year old Entrepreneur/professional party boy living and loving in Las Vegas NV.

    1. Hi Michael,
      I am so flattered that you found my little space on the web and replied to my post.

      You have a good point when you ask if it matters. Don’t get me wrong, I really appreciate seeing positive messages about beauty instead of the unattainable images we are bombarded with on a daily basis. I have two daughters and I’m definitely concerned about the media messages they are already receiving about beauty and they are only 3 and 1. But as a media studies teacher, I also feel it is important to have my students think past what they are viewing. I want them to think critically about all media messages they receive both positive and negative.

      Feel free to push my thinking even further as I love hearing different perspectives and yours made me reflect which is the main purpose I write this blog. So thank you for your comment and I look forward to your reply.

      Jamie

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