Lego sticker depicting construction worker’s catcall stirs controversy

|  May 03, 2013 |

Lego construction worker catcallBlogger, journalist and organizer Josh Stearns recently posted a photo to his blog of a sheet of Lego stickers that didn’t sit right with him and doesn’t portray the construction industry in a particularly flattering way.

One of the stickers, seen to the right and depicting a Lego minifigure in construction worker’s garb with his hand to his mouth, was captioned with the quote “HEY BABE!”

Stearns complained wrote that the message this sort of sticker sent to kids wasn’t a good one. “Maybe it’s the fact that I just saw the team at Hollaback speak this month, or maybe it is that this is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, or maybe it is just that street harassment sucks,” Stearns wrote. “But chances are it was all three of these things that made me so mad to see a brand I love pushing this sort of thing.”

The post and the photo stirred up quite a bit of coverage including statements from the Stop Street Harrassment group, and articles from Architect Magazine and Slate.

He even received a response from Lego itself that read “To communicate the LEGO experience to children we typically use humor and we are sorry that you were unhappy with the way a minifigure was portrayed here.”

But after seeing all the negative press, Lego followed that initial statement up with a more reassuring and satisfying answer from Andrea Ryder of Lego’s licensing department. “I am truly sorry that you had a negative experience with one of our products […] the product is no longer available and we would not approve such a product again.”

Despite the unfortunate situation, Stearns describes it overall as “a win” and is hopeful it will spark a conversation that “will be taken seriously by LEGO and other toy manufacturers.”

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