This has already been brilliantly summed up by a new favourite discovery Boganette, but I feel the need to add my two cents.
A new breast cancer awareness campaign has been launched by online magazine/blog/girly website NZGirl. The tagline of the campaign is “I’ve got a lovely pair”.
Well. That’s nice for all the lovely young women with lovely pairs of boobs that are healthy and cancer-free but what about those of us that do not have a perfect pair? I find it a tad insensitive.
Their aim is to raise awareness of breast health and help towards prevention. Considering I followed a link to the campaign page, but completely missed their article on “breast aware tips“, it is a bit of a fail. On the other hand, I agree that it will be a great success if this campaign leads to even just one young woman checking her breasts and finding a lump that she may not otherwise have found (and I know this to be the case now). I’m not amazingly upset with the campaign (much respect to several of my great Twitter friends have posted their pairs up), but I just think NZGirl could have been a little more sensitive.
My real beef with it is that it doesn’t help those of us that are currently battling, or who have battled this disease. It is hard enough trying to feel good about yourself with a giant scar in place of a boob, and only enough hair on your hair for a very bad combover, without having lovely perfect pairs of titties on display. But perhaps that is not their intention. Their intention is to raise awareness, not help sufferers (this Twitter exchange between NZGirl’s director and I kind of sums it up I think). And if you’re judging this awareness-raising by the amount of traffic they must be receiving then it’s a fantastic win, as their site was down half of this evening.
Here you can read some of the debate on Stuff.co.nz. The fact that NZGirl said they hadn’t consulted with breast cancer survivors or sufferers prior to the campaign launch appears to be contradictory to what they say here – though they say they talked to people affected by breast cancer which I guess could be people that know, or are related to a sufferer, survivor, or someone not so lucky. If they did consult with people like me, then perhaps they wouldn’t be receiving such wrath, although there seems to be a heck of a lot of people supporting them too. However I will concede that the market for campaigns like these is not those of us that already have the disease, but those young women that could be at risk.
I was also slightly miffed at another comment made on the Stuff article, by the chief executive of the NZ Breast Cancer Foundation – “Our focus is on the health and wellness of breasts so a lovely pair of breasts to us is a healthy pair”. I guess I’ll take my (un)lovely (half of a) pair of (un)healthy breasts and sit in a corner wondering when anything is going to be done to prevent young women like me getting this disease (another blog post is in the brewing about this issue).
I agree with the lovely Kate (a fabulous survivor) and don’t think the campaign was constructed with malicious intent, but it could have been carried out a bit better. Why not just post the breast care tips article, promote the heck out of it, make a donation to a breast cancer charity, and leave out the boobie shots. Or get people like Kate and I to get gorgeous portraits taken and post them up (like the amazing SCAR project – thanks to Bex for the link). Perhaps we’ll do our own campaign. I’ve been thinking about doing something like that, maybe getting body painted and some cool photos taken. Maybe a calendar. Anything where 100% of the proceeds go towards a good cause, and where the people behind it don’t benefit off the back of it (like massive increases in website traffic taking your site down).
Another great blog post on this subject: http://atouchofthecrazy.wordpress.com/2010/12/02/compassion-fail/