About the Project

In a nutshell our Gender Advertising Remixer app lets you re-combine video from ads directed at boys with audio from ads directed at girls (and vice versa) to create hilarious and insightful fair use mash-ups. It allows you to drag and drop clips from a library of 20 absurdly gendered toy commercials into 400 possible remix combinations. There are currently three different versions of the app up and running! We have an HTML5 video version and most recently a HTML5 LEGO edition that lets you mash-up the gender stereotypes in LEGO’s new Friends commercials.

• Try the Gendered Advertising Remixer (in HTML5)

• Try remixing LEGO’s gendered TV ads (in HTML5)

Why remix toy commercials?
Young people in the United States are subjected to an average of 25,000 TV commercials every year. Embedded in those advertisements are a very regressive and stereotypical set of social values about gender roles for boys and girls. So how can kids push back against a multibillion dollar corporate marketing machine? The goal of this project is to help empower youth of all genders to better understand, deconstruct and creatively take control of the highly gendered messages emanating from their television sets.

Who is behind the project?
The Gendered Advertising Remixer was designed by pop culture hacker and video remix artist Jonathan McIntosh. The app was built by Jonathan in collaboration with developers Boaz SenderZohar Babin and Brian Chirls during the Open Video Conference in 2010 and 2011.

More about the project:
Over the past 5 years I’ve been recording TV commercials and using them in educational remixing workshops. I’ve found that fair-use remix video can be a fantastic way to combine critical media literacy, technical skills and creative play to help youth understand, deconstruct and remix mass media messages about gender roles. So at the 2010 Open Video Conference Hack Labs I began a collaboration with Zohar Babin and on building a simple online Flash application to facilitate quick remixing of toy commercials without the need for expensive editing software. The next year’s Open Video Conference (2011) I teamed up with Boaz Sender and Brian Chirls to create a new open source version of the remixing tool using HTML5 and JavaScript.

Future plans:
I’m in the process of developing a series of educational resources and materials to be use in combination with this remixing tool. In case anyone wants to see the original ads I’ve set up playlists with all the boys ads and girls ads on YouTube.

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