Author Topic: Boy Legos and Girl Legos  (Read 21943 times)

Mr. Presley

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #165 on: July 02, 2013, 02:29:30 am »
is Eris the adventuring warrior from the eagle tribe a boy or a girl Lego. I'm only asking because I want to buy the set he or she comes in but I don't want someone to see me buy it if its a girl Lego. I'm a boy and I don't need any more flack I got enough shit as a kid when i got the bunnybee doll from cabbage patch, it was blue much like this Eris figure but apparently that does not make it manly enough. oh well I'm just going to get back to playing super street fighter, I'm no good at using Guile but I'd rather get my ass beat in the game than have my cousin beat me in real life for getting a perfect on him using Chun-lee (also blue... just sayin).

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #166 on: July 02, 2013, 02:31:26 am »
Lego made a statement about how it spent millions of dollars on research to expand the Lego experience to include girls. And it came up with the 'Friends' theme which includes the beauty salon and a cafe as opposed to Hogwarts and pirate ships. The sets for the 'friends' are primarily pink and purple. The sets not for the 'friends' are all colors. The packaging for the 'friends' set is pink and purple. The sets not in the 'friends' line are either blue or a variety of colors.

And the 'friends' theme is Lego SPECIFICALLY marketing to girls. Where the game-play isn't focused on actually building the sets but playing with them after they're already built so there's less emphasis on being creative and playing with the kits as you please and much more do it this way so your dollies will be happy.

Right, and like I said I acknowledge that this product does nothing to improve the cultural preconceptions about gender identity and gender roles. But Lego is soft of damned if they do and damned if they don't here. Either they're preaching at little girls to do things the Girl Way, or they're preaching at everyone else to Stop Telling Little Girls What They Should Be. Being a company that exists primarily to sell toys and make a profit, they are obviously going to behave in a way that makes them money. And in this case, whatever research they did told them that they would make money selling to little girls this way.

Again, I'm not saying it's "right" for them to do it this way, only that it isn't Lego's job to tell society what it believes. Society sets the standards, and Lego responds with products that fit those standards, because that's what will make them money. There's a certain cycle there, where society bases its self-image on what's sitting on store shelves, but that doesn't mean it's Lego's job to make the first move.

If it isn't Lego's job to make the first move (love how you facilely abdicated all corporations of any social responsibility, there) then it's ours, by being vocally disgusted with their product and marketing, isn't it?

Yes! Of course! I don't object to the outrage, but I don't understand the tone and the target. I agree it's unfortunate (beyond unfortunate, poor word choice, but bear with me it's late) to be marketing toys by capitalizing on gender-binary thinking when we should be well past that by now. I just think Lego is a symptom of the fucked up culture, not a source of it.

Also this particular topic sort of hits me weirdly because it sounds like "pink flowery girly stuff shouldn't exist because it reinforces stupid stereotypes," and I'd be inclined to agree if it weren't for the fact that this kind of toy is exactly what my own daughter loves, and reinforcing gender stereotypes is the last thing that's allowed in our home. So the argument can't be as simple as that.

I think the outrage is because people love Lego, and essentially want/expect better of them.

And they could have made pink/flowery/girly all they wanted with much less outrage, had they simply integrated the pink/flowery/girly into currently existing Lego themes such as City rather than segregating it into a separate world.

That, plus this:

To get a fresh perspective on this I asked both my daughter and son...

With my son...

Me: What do you think about the LEGO Friends line?
Son: It's okay if the girls like it.
Me: Why do you think girls aren't interested in LEGO?
Son: Because [LEGO] aren't being creative enough.
Me: How could they be more creative?
Son: They should do a lego spy set with girls...and do a whole bunch of sets so they can get addicted. But they should just do it in normal LEGO colors
Me: (laughing) You should go work for LEGO
Son: i WANT to!

With my daughter...

Me: What do you think about the LEGO Friends line?
Daughter: It's stupid.
Me: (laughing) What kinds of LEGOs would you rather have?
Daughter: I'd rather have the electronic kinda stuff
Me: Like what?
Daughter: Like rockets and stuff
Me: So if the LEGO company came to you and said, Mya, we'll make you any kind of LEGO set you want just name it, what would it be?
Daughter: I'd want a 50 foot tall turkey.

XD

I'm pretty happy with this.  They're honest.

The reaction to
"Didn't we use to sell a ton of toys to both boys *and* girls, like, 30-40 years ago? What happened to that?"
"We used to focus marketing on the intellectual benefits of creative play directly, but recently we've shifted over to story telling and immersive worlds."
"What's that got to do with gender? Girls love telling stories!"
"Turns out all of our story telling was at best reinforcing prevailing gender stereotypes, and at worse completely omitted female characters from, for instance, space exploration."
"But we had-"
"Slave Princess Leia does not count."

should have been:

"Oh. Let's tell better stories with our collections then. Stories that don't exclude half of our potential customers."

but it was

"Make some of the implicit sexism violently pink and reverse exclusionary, so all of our customers can be stereotyped equally."

There's nothing inherently wrong with making violently pink toys, it's the assumption that making violently pink toys somehow solves a gender imbalance. Making pink toys solves a very specific color spectrum imbalance. (I know I never had enough pink pieces to construct a giant, fleshy, organic alien spacecraft. Black/grey/white/blue/red with translucent blue & green highlights I had more then enough of, though.) Thinking you can extrapolate violent pink to gender is indicative of not knowing what the hell you're talking about. Which would be expected from any other company, except that Lego used to be best in the business for putting construction toys into the hands of kids without caring what gender they were.

(Related: for my seventh birthday cake I wanted strawberry icing, because strawberry is the best flavor. I asked my mom if she could find strawberry icing that didn't have any food coloring in it, because I didn't want any of the other boys at my party to think I was being girly with a pink cake.)
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Q. G. Pennyworth

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #167 on: July 02, 2013, 02:46:10 am »
Me and my brother had a lot of space sets, I claimed the one in the white suit with a white helmet was the girl and we just ran with it.

That said, it's kinda weird that even with that it was "THE girl" like you can only have one girl in the group if it's going to be a fun game.

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #168 on: July 02, 2013, 04:03:51 pm »
Nine naked Men just walking down the road will cause a heap of trouble for all concerned.

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #169 on: July 02, 2013, 04:05:51 pm »
My daughter was a big fan of the Aliens franchise.  Because the hero was a woman, and she succeeded by USING HER BRAINS.
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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #170 on: July 02, 2013, 04:22:41 pm »
My daughter was a big fan of the Aliens franchise.  Because the hero was a woman, and she succeeded by USING HER BRAINS.

Yet another marketing opportunity Lego completely ignored.
“I’m guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,” Charles Wick said. “It was very complicated.”


Anna Mae Bollocks

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #171 on: July 02, 2013, 04:25:11 pm »
My daughter was a big fan of the Aliens franchise.  Because the hero was a woman, and she succeeded by USING HER BRAINS.

When my daughter was about four and five, she went through a long, intense Xena phase. Because Xena could OPEN A CAN OF WHUPASS.  :lulz:

Lego missed that one, too.
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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #172 on: July 02, 2013, 04:26:25 pm »
The reaction to
"Didn't we use to sell a ton of toys to both boys *and* girls, like, 30-40 years ago? What happened to that?"
"We used to focus marketing on the intellectual benefits of creative play directly, but recently we've shifted over to story telling and immersive worlds."
"What's that got to do with gender? Girls love telling stories!"
"Turns out all of our story telling was at best reinforcing prevailing gender stereotypes, and at worse completely omitted female characters from, for instance, space exploration."
"But we had-"
"Slave Princess Leia does not count."

should have been:

"Oh. Let's tell better stories with our collections then. Stories that don't exclude half of our potential customers."

but it was

"Make some of the implicit sexism violently pink and reverse exclusionary, so all of our customers can be stereotyped equally."

There's nothing inherently wrong with making violently pink toys, it's the assumption that making violently pink toys somehow solves a gender imbalance. Making pink toys solves a very specific color spectrum imbalance. (I know I never had enough pink pieces to construct a giant, fleshy, organic alien spacecraft. Black/grey/white/blue/red with translucent blue & green highlights I had more then enough of, though.) Thinking you can extrapolate violent pink to gender is indicative of not knowing what the hell you're talking about. Which would be expected from any other company, except that Lego used to be best in the business for putting construction toys into the hands of kids without caring what gender they were.

(Related: for my seventh birthday cake I wanted strawberry icing, because strawberry is the best flavor. I asked my mom if she could find strawberry icing that didn't have any food coloring in it, because I didn't want any of the other boys at my party to think I was being girly with a pink cake.)

Holy crap, I hadn't seen it from that angle. Now I think I understand the outrage.

It isn't that Lego is simply making "another product" that happens to be pink and happens to sell, as I was seeing it. It's that this product is their attempt at solving the "We don't have enough options for girls" problem. And it's a flatly insulting "solution" to that problem.
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Anna Mae Bollocks

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #173 on: July 02, 2013, 04:39:28 pm »
The reaction to
"Didn't we use to sell a ton of toys to both boys *and* girls, like, 30-40 years ago? What happened to that?"
"We used to focus marketing on the intellectual benefits of creative play directly, but recently we've shifted over to story telling and immersive worlds."
"What's that got to do with gender? Girls love telling stories!"
"Turns out all of our story telling was at best reinforcing prevailing gender stereotypes, and at worse completely omitted female characters from, for instance, space exploration."
"But we had-"
"Slave Princess Leia does not count."

should have been:

"Oh. Let's tell better stories with our collections then. Stories that don't exclude half of our potential customers."

but it was

"Make some of the implicit sexism violently pink and reverse exclusionary, so all of our customers can be stereotyped equally."

There's nothing inherently wrong with making violently pink toys, it's the assumption that making violently pink toys somehow solves a gender imbalance. Making pink toys solves a very specific color spectrum imbalance. (I know I never had enough pink pieces to construct a giant, fleshy, organic alien spacecraft. Black/grey/white/blue/red with translucent blue & green highlights I had more then enough of, though.) Thinking you can extrapolate violent pink to gender is indicative of not knowing what the hell you're talking about. Which would be expected from any other company, except that Lego used to be best in the business for putting construction toys into the hands of kids without caring what gender they were.

(Related: for my seventh birthday cake I wanted strawberry icing, because strawberry is the best flavor. I asked my mom if she could find strawberry icing that didn't have any food coloring in it, because I didn't want any of the other boys at my party to think I was being girly with a pink cake.)

Holy crap, I hadn't seen it from that angle. Now I think I understand the outrage.

It isn't that Lego is simply making "another product" that happens to be pink and happens to sell, as I was seeing it. It's that this product is their attempt at solving the "We don't have enough options for girls" problem. And it's a flatly insulting "solution" to that problem.

Yeah, this thread opened my eyes, too.

At first I was kind of "So what? Is this some kind of hyperfeminist thing trying to force everybody into that unisex crap? Fuck that, we like our makeup and pretty stuff."

But the girl Legos (yeah, I put an "s" on it, fuck them) are DUMBED DOWN. You arrange the furniture and play dollies in it, you don't create anything. It's a Polly Pocket set without the portability.

"Make a plastic dollhouse that snaps together and use a lot of pink. That's good enough for THOSE PEOPLE."
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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #174 on: July 02, 2013, 04:44:20 pm »
The reaction to
"Didn't we use to sell a ton of toys to both boys *and* girls, like, 30-40 years ago? What happened to that?"
"We used to focus marketing on the intellectual benefits of creative play directly, but recently we've shifted over to story telling and immersive worlds."
"What's that got to do with gender? Girls love telling stories!"
"Turns out all of our story telling was at best reinforcing prevailing gender stereotypes, and at worse completely omitted female characters from, for instance, space exploration."
"But we had-"
"Slave Princess Leia does not count."

should have been:

"Oh. Let's tell better stories with our collections then. Stories that don't exclude half of our potential customers."

but it was

"Make some of the implicit sexism violently pink and reverse exclusionary, so all of our customers can be stereotyped equally."

There's nothing inherently wrong with making violently pink toys, it's the assumption that making violently pink toys somehow solves a gender imbalance. Making pink toys solves a very specific color spectrum imbalance. (I know I never had enough pink pieces to construct a giant, fleshy, organic alien spacecraft. Black/grey/white/blue/red with translucent blue & green highlights I had more then enough of, though.) Thinking you can extrapolate violent pink to gender is indicative of not knowing what the hell you're talking about. Which would be expected from any other company, except that Lego used to be best in the business for putting construction toys into the hands of kids without caring what gender they were.

(Related: for my seventh birthday cake I wanted strawberry icing, because strawberry is the best flavor. I asked my mom if she could find strawberry icing that didn't have any food coloring in it, because I didn't want any of the other boys at my party to think I was being girly with a pink cake.)

Holy crap, I hadn't seen it from that angle. Now I think I understand the outrage.

It isn't that Lego is simply making "another product" that happens to be pink and happens to sell, as I was seeing it. It's that this product is their attempt at solving the "We don't have enough options for girls" problem. And it's a flatly insulting "solution" to that problem.

Nailed it.
“I’m guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,” Charles Wick said. “It was very complicated.”


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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #175 on: July 02, 2013, 04:49:36 pm »
W00t! Thread delivers!

So--considering the price of legos, would it be terribly expensive to print a male face on the front of a minifig head and a female face on the back?  Possibly throw in an extra hairpiece so Jane isn't restricted to wearing John's pompadour (although Jane could totally rock a pomp). 

Maybe that's being too progressive ...but...I DO see a huge opportunity for MegaBlocks despite being a lego purist.

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #176 on: July 02, 2013, 04:54:27 pm »
W00t! Thread delivers!

So--considering the price of legos, would it be terribly expensive to print a male face on the front of a minifig head and a female face on the back?  Possibly throw in an extra hairpiece so Jane isn't restricted to wearing John's pompadour (although Jane could totally rock a pomp). 

Maybe that's being too progressive ...but...I DO see a huge opportunity for MegaBlocks despite being a lego purist.

They could do that, or they could just print more female faces on the heads and include more female characters in their narratives. It's a 1/4" piece of molded plastic that they're already producing, and they already have the infrastructure to do it. They just... aren't doing it.
“I’m guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,” Charles Wick said. “It was very complicated.”


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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #177 on: July 02, 2013, 04:56:20 pm »
W00t! Thread delivers!

So--considering the price of legos, would it be terribly expensive to print a male face on the front of a minifig head and a female face on the back?  Possibly throw in an extra hairpiece so Jane isn't restricted to wearing John's pompadour (although Jane could totally rock a pomp). 

Maybe that's being too progressive ...but...I DO see a huge opportunity for MegaBlocks despite being a lego purist.

They could do that, or they could just print more female faces on the heads and include more female characters in their narratives. It's a 1/4" piece of molded plastic that they're already producing, and they already have the infrastructure to do it. They just... aren't doing it.

I know :) i just like the idea of having a ...what would you call it...an intersex minifig? 

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #178 on: July 02, 2013, 05:04:07 pm »
W00t! Thread delivers!

So--considering the price of legos, would it be terribly expensive to print a male face on the front of a minifig head and a female face on the back?  Possibly throw in an extra hairpiece so Jane isn't restricted to wearing John's pompadour (although Jane could totally rock a pomp). 

Maybe that's being too progressive ...but...I DO see a huge opportunity for MegaBlocks despite being a lego purist.

There's no extra cost to making normal female figs, in fact it's cheaper because they wouldn't have had to do all these new molds. Here's some from the pirate set, one male and one female:



There's no reason not to include more female figs in the city sets, can you imagine how much fun it would be to have an awesome female robber fig like the male one? Some extra chick hair in one of the astronaut sets?

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Re: Boy Legos and Girl Legos
« Reply #179 on: July 02, 2013, 05:08:23 pm »
W00t! Thread delivers!

So--considering the price of legos, would it be terribly expensive to print a male face on the front of a minifig head and a female face on the back?  Possibly throw in an extra hairpiece so Jane isn't restricted to wearing John's pompadour (although Jane could totally rock a pomp). 

Maybe that's being too progressive ...but...I DO see a huge opportunity for MegaBlocks despite being a lego purist.

They could do that, or they could just print more female faces on the heads and include more female characters in their narratives. It's a 1/4" piece of molded plastic that they're already producing, and they already have the infrastructure to do it. They just... aren't doing it.

I know :) i just like the idea of having a ...what would you call it...an intersex minifig?

You can't really cover up the back of the heads all the time, I think it would bug kids. It would have bugged the shit out of me. The heads are interchangeable anyway.

There's really just no conceivable reason they couldn't have just added more female characters and maybe a few pink-foofy theme sets to their regular line. Other than gender segregation, which is a social problem that's getting worse, not better, in the US.
“I’m guessing it was January 2007, a meeting in Bethesda, we got a bag of bees and just started smashing them on the desk,” Charles Wick said. “It was very complicated.”