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MyTeksi's Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign Grabs Attention For All The Wrong Reasons

Good intentions, not-so-good execution.

Cover image via Instagram @daphneiking / Twitter

Spreading awareness for a cause is always a good thing, but MyTeksi's Pink October breast cancer awareness campaign seems to be hitting the wrong notes with some people with its campaign tagline and accompanying video

Image via imgur.com

The campaign, dubbed #GrabitBeatit, is part of a regional campaign which also runs at other countries where MyTeksi operates as GrabTaxi - Singapore, Indonesia and Thailand.

In Malaysia, users can donate RM30 to receive a “Pink Kit” which includes an instruction card for breast self-examination, badges, and a white T-shirt designed by local brand Pestle & Mortar with the words “LOVE BOOBS? SO DOES CANCER” in pink emblazoned on the chest.

themalaymailonline.com

The points of contention seem to be the hashtag #GrabItBeatIt and the tagline "Love boobs? So does cancer", which critics note is not only "crude", but also sexist for "sexualising breasts" and objectifying women, which shouldn't be used in the name of raising awareness

Image via Twitter

The campaign tagline was also broadcast to users of the taxi-for-hire service's app.

Image via Twitter

It did not help that the campaign's accompanying satirical video titled 'What If Boobs Don't Exist', which was produced by local production company The Grim Film, did nothing to highlight the plight of breast cancer victims and survivors

Image via imgur.com

The campaign’s 3-minute-long video attempted to portray a world where “breasts do not exist”.

It featured scantily-women in various and sexually provocative situations, later replaced with men who made the situations unappealing, to signify how important breasts are.

therakyatpost.com

The video received no small amount of flack, with netizens pointing out that the video does not just trivialise breast cancer, the underlying message that the world would be worse off without breasts is demeaning to breast cancer victims and survivors who had undergone mastectomies

Image via imgur.com
Image via imgur.com
Image via imgur.com

The video has since been taken down i.e. switched to Private mode. Grim Film has also issued an apology on its Facebook page, admitting that they did not give the concept enough thought and urged their supporters to take a proactive stance in understanding the real issue.

Image via imgur.com

GrabTaxi and MyTeksi have also issued apologies on FB and Twitter, expressing their regret that the taglines used are not "reflective of the seriousness of the issue" despite being deemed able to capture the public's attention.

The company also reiterated that their intention was to encourage women to conduct self-examinations and get screened for early detection.

Image via imgur.com
Image via imgur.com

Despite the criticism, the campaign has received quite a fair bit of support, with many - including local celebrity Daphne Iking - having donated to the cause and posting pics of themselves wearing their respective "LOVE BOOBS?" shirts

Conversations on gender equality may be gaining traction worldwide, but sexism is so deeply-rooted in society that some may not realise their actions are deemed sexist to another: