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Fender Jazzmasters Dennis Galuszka via Instagram

Fender Jazzmasters Dennis Galuszka via Instagram  ·  Source: Instagram/Fender

Fender is in hot water over a now-removed Instagram post that fans of the brand have deemed inappropriate and misogynistic. The company caused a similar controversy last year when it had to ‘let go’ Master Builder John Cruz  for an inappropriate social media post. This time, however, it’s a bit embarrassing for the US guitar giant, as it has done a similar thing itself.

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Fender criticised for Instagram post

Fender recently shared a post on Instagram, made originally by Fender Custom Shop Master Builder Dennis Galuszka in January, that shows an image of two Jazzmaster guitars with the caption:

“A pair of Brazilians. Ready to hang on your neck or sit on your knee. They honestly play and sound amazing.”

The now-removed Fender Instagram post

The now-removed Fender Instagram post

Social Media

Earlier today Fender reposted Galuszka’s image and caption onto the brand’s official Instagram page, which has now been pulled as followers started to point out why it was inappropriate. Below are just some of the comments Fender recieved from followers on Instagram.

“As a Brazilian woman the caption seems a bit off to me,”

“I love @Fender but not this misogynistic caption.”

“The attempted subtlety of the innuendo suggests that you know the inappropriateness of the comment, but you just can’t help yourselves. That makes it all the worse.”

Camilla Charlesworth, bassist for The Veronicas also got involved and had this to say – “Great guitars as always Fender. Feeling like the caption is unnecessary though. Feel me?”

“It’s more so weird and creepy.”

“Like, you’re referring to instruments as Brazilian women who are ready to hang off your neck and sit on your knee. Like women, Brazilians, people in general, don’t want to be spoken about in that way and it definitely is hinting [at] the idea that, people of colour or like women of colour are submissive and exotic and sexualised.”

“The fact that 50 percent of new guitar buyers in the U.K. were women was a surprise to the U.K. team, but it’s identical to what’s happening in the U.S.,”  – Fender CEO Andy Mooney 

Bad PR

Should Fender have used this combination of image and caption, especially after last year’s incident? Or do you think the company made an honest mistake? Especially when Rolling Stone reported that Fender believes that half of new guitarists are female.

Let us know your thoughts and views in the comments section.

More Information

 

by Jef
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59 responses to “Fender criticised for misogynistic Instagram post”

  1. Erik says:

    I feel this has multiple possible interpretations. Personally i didn’t read the text as alluding to women at all, even though i can see how one can make that interpretation.

    Not sure if a person should be held accountable for others interpretations, though. To me this is an eye-of-the-beholder situation, and i believe that we are personally responsible for our interpretations.

  2. JP says:

    All the time that misogyny like this exists, it only goes to prove that there are clearly an awful lot of terribly insecure blokes out there.

  3. Tim says:

    Who cares? Some guitars are girls, boys, non-binary and genderless. Get over it and stop being offended; live your life.

    • Abel says:

      No one stopped living their lives though. It is okay to criticize it.

      • Tim says:

        That’s not true. Some people are waiting to be offended and jump at the chance to correct someone for not being politically correct. They’re not living their lives; they’re parasites.

        • Don says:

          I’ll bet you’re not a parasite when you speak out against things that offend you, right?

          But you do you and keep on dismissing anyone else’s opinions that don’t conform to your own when it comes to sexist behaviour. As a man, you don’t have to give a rat’s ass about women, right?

          Seriously, if you’re using the term political correctness as an insult, you really need to talk to someone a few decades younger and a heap load more IQ points higher to explain to you the error of your ways.

          But again, you do you, as I know not one word of this reply will cause you to stop and think.

    • Ab says:

      We should care, because Fender could’ve just written “new guitars” and everybody would’ve liked and reposted the thing without even noticing the lazy caption.

      But no, the CM got out of his way to write something dumb with no added information whatsoever

  4. Crispin Weir says:

    How incredibly stupid. The necks on the guitars are made of Brazilian Rosewood which is now a very special wood to use for guitar necks. They are referred to as ‘Brazilian’ necks. Whilst there might be an underlying connotation, jumping on the story and imposing a temporary Instagram ban on Fender, shows the lack of research done and that people have jumped to conclusions without asking for explanation first. This is an overreaction and something that has been taken out of context.

  5. Roger says:

    Love how Gearnews just outright calls it misogynistic in the headline. Pretty shitty thing to do gearnews.

    The fender post doesnt even mention women. Brazilian men can sit on laps too

    • Jef says:

      Actually the statement was made on Instagram by Fender followers, so we used their wording in the title for this article. “I love @Fender but not this misogynistic caption.”

    • Ab says:

      When I read GN title, I half expected fender’s post to be “just a bit dated” and people getting mad over nothing

      … but there’s no defending Fender here. It is misogynistic as it plays on the long lasting stereotype/fantasy of women as sex object (with an added flavour of colonial exotism added to the mix – they wouldn’t have made the same innuendo for a guitar made in Germany or Australia)

  6. Fragile Snowflake says:

    “Boo Hoo… I’m offended by something that wasn’t said about me personally… by a person I don’t even know!”

    Get over yourselves and grow a spine!!! Life is NOT ALL ABOUT YOU!!! This is what happens when EVERYONE gets a trophy!

    • Don says:

      So sayeth the Fragile Snowflake.

      Join him for his next TedTalk where he discusses irony in comments, and how to effectively demonstrate a tone-deaf disconnect between one’s statement and their alias.

      Register now, seats are filling fast.

  7. Rasmus Jes Petersen says:

    I don’t get it. I assume that also the Brazilian population is approximately 50/50 female/male. How is it misogynistic to call guitars Brazilian? I can accept that it may be seen as racist if you are very easily offended but not misogynistic.

    • Ab says:

      Because Brazilians “hanging on your neck” and more especially “sit on your knee” are clearly referring to what we commonly imagine female do when they want to have an intercourse with males

      It is, sadly, a very common marketing tactic when the target audience are mostly males

  8. Jon says:

    This is a ridiculous waste of time. People play guitar with a strap or sitting down. Nothing about that wording mentions a woman in a derogatory way. Or are we just supposed to assume that “Brazilian” always means women? Shame on Fender for pulling the post.

    • Abel says:

      Cool story, bro. What other possible interpretation could it be? It is blatantly obvious that they were referring to the stereotype and prejudice that Brazilian and Latina women are overly promiscuous.

      • Erik says:

        One possible interpretation (mine) is that the text were referring to the guitars, literally.

      • Jon says:

        Since you seem to have missed it, “bro”, I’ll help you out. Fender makes special runs of guitars with all Brazilian rosewood necks. They’ve always referred to these as “Brazilians”. Nothing about this misogynistic. Arguing that these are misogynistic – is misogynistic in on itself.

      • Jon says:

        Also, wtf are you saying? I come from a latin family and none of the women in my family are “overly promiscuous” as you say. Sounds like you’re the misogynist here generalizing Hispanic women.

        • Scrollz says:

          Abel isn’t saying they are actually promiscuous, they are saying that is the prejudiced stereotyped that Fender is encouraging. You should ask the female members of your family if they are aware of this stereotype or have ever felt uncomfortable or disrespected because they experienced someone stereotyping them. Their answers may surprise you.

        • Go Home Republicans says:

          You’re seriously an idiot if you can’t actually see what’s wrong with that post. Or you’re intentionally being dishonest about your interpretations.

  9. D says:

    The post was clearly nudge nudge, wink wink innuendo – if you deny that, you’re either being obtuse, or your reading comprehension is poor.

    The musical instrument industry has been massively sexist and chauvinistic for a long time. From bikini-clad models on mags and at trade shows, to sexual names for gear and presets, and everything else besides. I know plenty of women who embraced online gear sites as they could finally avoid being talked down to by bro salesmen.

    Of course it’s not offensive if your attitudes are being catered to. Fender themselves know the tide is going out on the lad mag neanderthal audience, and they have to respect a more diverse customer base.

    • Ric says:

      Hmmm ….. the musical instrument industry has been sexist and chauvinist for a long time with bikini clad models, etc.? Give me an example of a cello, piano or oboe advertisement featuring a bikini clad model or sexually suggestive copy? I think sexism is more of a rock’s roll thing. Hang on a minute, wasn’t the term rock’n roll another term for ‘doing the deed’ or ‘rolling in the hay’? (So too was jazz I think). Should we come up for another name for rock music because of its (once) sexually suggestive connotations?

  10. Jim says:

    This comment section is exactly why Fender needs to be called out. It’s not okay. It was never okay. We’ve moved on, and it’s important to HAVE EMPATHY and learn WHY this isn’t okay. It shouldn’t even matter how big the percentage is of female buyers, because, (shockingly), women are actually people! Look, it’s not hard to do the right thing- companies like Fender have giant HR departments that would be more than happy to look over posts.

    • Reasoning human says:

      Its also important to not be overly sensitive child, if you have outrage over everything you create so much noise that your single gets lost

    • Gingerhead says:

      It might not be Ok by some peoples standard, but it is Ok, in fact, it is bloody necessary that there are things out there, that are not Ok to some, because who would define what’s Ok and what isn’t? In our quest to rid the world from things we deem not Ok, we are heading towards dictatorship, as no humans can nor have the right to define what’s Ok and what’s not Ok. The moment we let people decide what’s not Ok, we’re on very thin ice!

  11. Reasoning human says:

    Outrage culture is stupid. Objections to this post is stupid.

    Enough with the SJW Nazis

    • Go Home Republicans says:

      This is just another way of saying, “I wish I was able to say racist and misogynistic things without people calling me out for it.”

  12. Matt says:

    Dunno if it’s misogynistic for Gearnews.com to label this news report as “hot”…?

  13. Reasoning human says:

    Outrage culture is stupid. Objections to this post is stupid. Enough with the SJW dorks

  14. Reasoning human says:

    Outrage culture is sad. Objections to this post is dumb Enough with the SJWs

  15. L says:

    This is really pathetic. The dictatorship of political correctness is reaching an unbearable level of absurdness and stupidity.

  16. John Hurtt says:

    I saw this post and had no issues with it. I think this is a case of some people just looking for a reason to be upset.

  17. RTL says:

    There is a very simple solution to such issues: hire women of color to run your PR departments.

    And seeing as they represent the largest demographic of educated people in America, it should not be very difficult to find many qualified women from which to select PR staff that are unlikely to make any racist or sexist comments or ads.

  18. Cry Baby Cry says:

    Apparently those instagram users haven’t listened to much rock and roll.
    This post is a non-issue.

  19. Frederick Manteghian says:

    They’re Fender.
    Not Gender.
    Take a chill pill.

    • Don says:

      Pack it in, everyone.

      The white man has proclaimed that unless a company is named Gender, they’re free to make as many sexist comments as they want.

      Thank you, white man who can’t be bothered to think of anyone other than himself. You’ve saved us a lot of time trying to right antiquated sexist attitudes that plague the guitar community.

  20. LR says:

    The innuendo is definitely there, but I think it’s more just juvenile and cheeky than specifically or intentionally misogynistic. However, I don’t think people being offended by it are some sort “PC” cabal of cancel culture warriors. Labeling anyone who gets offended by something pretty dumb as “snowflakes” is just ignorant. We should be able to have conversations about these things to better understand other peoples feelings without resorting to the childish behavior that does actually allow the sexism and misogyny inherent in music, and guitar culture specifically, to run rampant.

  21. Janne says:

    Imagine getting upset at this. Lmaoooo

  22. Phil Gibbons says:

    Mentioning sexy Brazilians in a clever IG ad post? Yes, Fender clearly hates women. 🙄
    Good grief…

  23. Tim says:

    I think it’s good that Fender are thinking about the language they are using. Whether people are right or wrong to be offended by the language they used is irrelevant. The fact is that some people are offended, including their potential customers. Who in Fender’s marketing department aspires to their brand being seen as sexist and outdated?

    • Phil says:

      That shines a light on the fact that Fender is, at the end of the day, not your edgy guitar buddy, but a black-suit-and-tie corporation.

  24. Diki Ross says:

    It’s obvious that there are many interpretations of the phrase. What should also be obvious is that someone in charge at Fender should have spotted that ONE of them was misogynistic, and that one interpretation should have been enough to rework the ad copy until there weren’t ANY negative possibilities.

  25. Scrollz says:

    “A pair of Brazilians. Ready to sit on your neck or hang on your knee.” has the same tone and innuendo as, “A pair of Hawaiians (koa). Ready to look pretty and be yours for a cheap price.” or “A pair of Hondurans (mahogany). Smooth and ready for your fingers.”

    The whole “joke” Fender is going for here is the exotification and objectification of women while referencing a country that has an enormous sex tourism and trafficking problem. I’m sure that all the fine “anti-PC” people in here only think about the quality of tonewoods, the biological diversity of the rainforest, and the politically complex reign of Pedro II when they read “Brazilians ready to seat on your knee.” It would be CRAZY to think that any of your minds jump to the international stereotype of young, bikini-clad women on a beach who just can’t wait to obediently sit in the lap of a wealthy, foreign man.

    Maybe y’all are so defensive of Fender’s stupid advertising because YOU feel personally attacked when people publicly point out that a privileged and out-of-touch company casually making sexist jokes to be appealing is uh…not that appealing to the majority of people listening. More “pathetic incel” vibes than “witty and charming” vibes y’know?

    No one is saying you have to burn your Fender guitar. Just don’t defend or encourage this behavior. In fact, if you like Fender guitars, you want the company to do well, AND you want to a generally likable person who has compassion and respect for the world around you, then the best thing you can do is to call Fender out on things like this and tell them that it isn’t appreciated. You can also choose to stay in your ignorant niche and become less appealing and relevant to the world as it moves past you, just like Fender seems to have been doing for a while.

    Thank you for posting this, Jef.

    • bobby says:

      “No one is saying you have to burn your Fender guitar. Just don’t defend or encourage this behavior. ”
      love it
      people just love to jump to extremes

  26. Cyp3 says:

    If anyone at all was truly in doubt of whether fender or any other company should be talking like this, just read the comments and see the types of people who think its no big deal. i didnt get into music in the first place to NOT be critical of dumbfuckery. More than half the women I know are survivors of sexual assaults, one didnt survive. If criticism of sexism offends you, be offended, and if you are a rapo, I hope you get shot in the face, you just havent fucked with the right woman yet, 2021 might just bring it to you.

  27. Covergirl says:

    Personally, I like the idea of a couple of hot Brazilian girls sitting on my knee. Young preferably and I can rest in the knowledge their perspectives have not been infected by the atrocious narcissism of US education.

    Oddly, I don’t think appreciating hot chix is misogynistic.

    Expecting all chix to be hot AND denying them access to rights based on that is misogynistic.
    \Stop being so goddamned preachy.

  28. Gingerhead says:

    We’re heading towards a society, where no jokes, no innuendos, no irony will be allowed, because someone on the great wide world MIGHT feel offended!
    Thanks, but No Thanks!

    Remember: There is No right to Not feel offended!

  29. Covergirl says:

    The tyranny of mediocrity. “Free speech” is now interpreted as speech free from any but *approved* content. Statements must be *approved* by her Majesty Hillary Clinton or any authorized delegate of the pretentious classes.

    Question for the LGBTQWERY crowd. Is it immoral for a chick to think chicks are sexy only if they don’t have a beard?

    Or what about old women? Can they just be people or are they a protected class too?

    I remember when “special” meant you rode on a small bus to school – back when my sister was officially “retarded.” The title didn’t bother anyone.

    Sad faces should not be confused with truth, nor outrage with wisdom.

  30. Bob says:

    If you entered the private mind of most people, you would find a lot of imagery that the PC brigade would find offensive. I wonder if in the future, someone might invent a machine that can read your thoughts. Then we would have the PC Force walking around making sure people aren’t thinking things others may find offensive.

    Looking forward to that day, aren’t you?

  31. Ted says:

    Give me a break. I saw this when it was originally posted and saw no double meaning in it. Anyone who does has their mind in the gutter.

  32. Joe B says:

    Nice classic guitars. My thought was for stage or studio. Here’s a well written article about the rare and valued material https://www.guitarplayer.com/gear/whats-the-big-deal-about-brazilian-rosewood

  33. Kelly says:

    Tick-tick-tick-tick….
    That’s the continuing countdown until the government will have a newly created Cabinet-level position known as ‘Sensitivity Czar’. Soon, EVERYTHING said that offends will be scrutinized and the offending party will be marginalized and stripped of their ability to make a living. Orwell was not too far off on his dates.

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