Seeing ourselves in the products we buy

Journalism needs to keep working on representing all people

I don’t usually think about social issues while grocery shopping (ok, I do, but this line sounds better) but today I was struck by something I found in, of all places, the diaper aisle.

On my way to pick up tortilla chips I was literally stopped in my tracks when I saw this:
boxes of pampers
Proctor & Gamble, the makers of Pampers, gets it. People like to see themselves represented. In movies. On TV. In their local newspaper. Even on their box of diapers. It matters that there are more than cute little white babies on these boxes of Pampers. The multiple pictures tells the consumer that P & G  is aware of and thinking about their customers. Just as they know that one diaper doesn’t fit all, not all customers are the same, either.

Why do so many other businesses have such a hard time with this?

I learned a lot while working for Gannett. They got it very early on and really opened my eyes to the importance of diversity — as a business imperative and as the right thing to do. That was 30 years ago. You’ve probably heard this speech a million times by now. I know I’ve preached it and taught it at least that many times. And I’ll keep preaching it because far too many people are slow to learn it. Diversity matters. Representation of all people matters. Each of us matters.


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