Sometimes, you just want to kick back and party without worrying about sexism. Unfortunately, we live in a world where that's not always possible.
Tuesday, some participants in the Cannes Lions international advertising festival received a party invitation stipulating that only “attractive females and models” were welcome. The invitation was for The Wednesday Party, sponsored by Thrillist Media Group and digital agency VaynerMedia, AdWeek reports.
Potential female guests were asked to send “recent untouched photos” or links to social media for review.
Someone forwarded the email to advertising consultant and women’s advocate Cindy Gallop, who made it pretty clear on Twitter how she felt about the requirements:
Both VaynerMedia CEO Gary Vaynerchuk and Thrillist CEO Ben Lerer said that they had nothing to do with the invitation, which came from a third-party promoter.
“No one at Thrillist (or Vayner for that matter) knew anything about what this vendor was doing and we are clearly appalled by it,” wrote Lerer in an internal email forwarded to The Huffington Post. He also wrote they would no longer be working with the vendor and would be “more stringent” in selecting who they work with going forward.
Vaynerchuk said in a video response to Gallop that he was “mortified” by the email and was trying to find out more details about how it came to be.
When HuffPost called the number listed on the invitation, we repeatedly got a busy signal. However, a Google search links the number with events company iGetin. The company’s website appears to be down.
Even so, it’s still a little alarming anyone thought this was a good idea in 2016.
Luckily, Kathy Ruiz, creative director at ad agency NVRLND, had some helpful edits that they might want to take into consideration next time.