Milk Kills Its Sexist Ad Campaign

After drawing criticism from the whole entire Internet for their GOT PMS? campaign, which, among other things, was sexist, heteronormative, and just plain un-funny, the California Milk Processor Board has pulled the offending ads. The campaign’s shelf live: a mere ten days. Nice work, everyone!

People trying to visit milk’s “” miscrosite will now be directed to, which contains a half-assed apology that’s dangerously close to “sorry you got offended by our rad campaign. Maybe if you’d listened to us and imbibed some milk, you wouldn’t be so bitchy.”

“Over the past couple of weeks, regrettably, some people found our campaign about milk and PMS to be outrageous and misguided-and we apologize to those we offended. Others thought it funny and educational,” reads the site’s landing page. Who was that, fans of Everybody Loves Raymond? The non-apology continues in the pages of the New York Times, where Milk Board executive director Steve James is quoted as saying, “There’s no sense in keeping up a Web site that’s like waving a red flag to some people,” and that taking down the site “is not a failure in any way…we accomplished what we set out to accomplish.”

He claims they had no idea that the campaign would provoke so much negative backlash, which means either Steve James is a big, fat liar, or he thought the current cultural environment to be much more receptive to tired, sexist humor than it turned out to be. In any case, anyone who is still pissed off enough to stop buying milk should know that a lot of great alternatives like soy, rice, hemp, and almost milk exist (I prefer almond), and that you can get calcium from a lot of non-dairy sources including dark leafy greens, beans, sea veggies, tofu, and nuts and seeds. More info on non-dairy calcium sources can be found here. Happy menstruating!


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    • Cassieleigh

      I thought this campaign was so funny I showed it to my husband! It’s hilarious. If you can’t laugh at the differences between men and women, not much will be funny. People need to stop being so darn sensitive. We have a whatever attitude to so many things we should care about (famine, genocide, poor economic environments in developing countries) we shouldn’t care so much about a goofy ad campaign. And you know what they say, within every joke (funny or not) there’s a kernel of truth.

      • Jamie Peck

        I care about those things. I also care about sexism in our culture. The two are not mutually exclusive.

    • crackerjackie

      “I’m sorry you’re uncomfortable and on edge with the mortal kombat thats taking place with my ovaries, and I’m sorry that you’re naive enough to think a thing of milk is gonna make that go away.”

    • epilonious

      As a gay man, which means I am at least a 1/3rd black woman… I humbly submit that you are essentially playing right into Mister James’ mean sexist hands.

      He used humor, the great equalizer, and the whole resulting backlash is generating, for lack of a better metaphor, eye rolls. Of all the things to be angry about, a campaign from cow-juice suggesting it is an analogue for pamprin in the slightest of insensitive manners seems low on the list.

      Consider this: I had no idea about this campaign until you posted it. And while I can understand your anger, I still kind of give a “Feh” to the need of it. It’s got me thinking about milk now…

      And really, I hated it when the Gay Community called on a boycott every time someone associated with some organization did something mean like give money to Republicans or say they didn’t like a particularly mincing character in a soap opera… I felt it was distracting from bigger issues.

      So… I file this under “whatevers, sorry it’s bugging you”.

    • Maraiah

      You poor delicate thing. Your sensibilities were offended by a heteronormative ad campaign? Aww…

      Still, they did achieve what they wanted to achieve- which was attention for the ad campaign. I have to hand it to the internet, they did an excellent job letting people who don’t give a shit know about it.

      Complaining about sexism in our culture (that is, North American) is like complaining about not being able to afford internet. Guess what? There are women who can’t walk out their front door without being covered from head to toe, as there are people who can’t even afford food. For this much of a hubbub to be created over a flippant ad campaign that was brought into being to attract attention to a pretty significant issue (and drinking milk is significant, especially for children, unless you -want- everyone to have brittle, disintegrating bones), is preposterous.

      So, feminists, find something else to complain about- perhaps the actual marginalization and degradation of women.

      • matbo

        Urh, but I’m just so sick of the stereotype of being a raging hormonal bitch everytime I have my period or am about to have it or just have had it pr whatever. Some women do suffer these symptoms, some keep it under control, some lose it, some make their man pay, but men are not constantly shuffeling to fulfill womens needs and I find it kinda offensive that we think it’s a normal thing.

    • Lindsey

      I would have liked if they had an add that was like, “You know that milk can give you calcium, but did you also know it can also help with pms, and do (other things that make milk great)”. Milk… <3