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Cross cultural study of gender portrayal in children ’ s television commercials: Korea and Hong Kong. Young Sook Moon Hanyang University & Kara Chan Hong Kong Baptist University.

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slide1
Cross cultural study of gender portrayal in children’s television commercials: Korea and Hong Kong
  • Young Sook Moon
  • Hanyang University
  • &
  • Kara Chan
  • Hong Kong Baptist University

gender protrayal

slide2
Stereotypes in children’s advertising is believed to have potential impact on gender socialization, children’s views of themselves and other people
  • Gender role portrayal in advertising is well studied in some western countries
  • cross-cultural variation in gender stereotyping in children advertising was neglected

gender protrayal

slide3
Many multinationals start to view Asian countries as a single regional market:

fast development of communications

more flattening of income, education,

opportunity to travel and exposure to other

cultures

  • Asia is really a series of localized markets with their own characteristics
  • Korea and Hong Kong differ in:

history, culture, language

advertising rules and regulations

gender protrayal

gender socialization
Gender Socialization
  • Several theories to account for gender differences:

cultural explanation: established through

childhood socialization process

structural explanation: arise from common

positions in social structures

social role theory: men and women behave

according to the stereotypes associated

with social roles they occupy

(a more flexible perspective)

gender protrayal

hofstede s typology
Hofstede’s typology
  • Five cultural dimensions:

individualism/collectivism

power distance

uncertainty avoidance

masculinity/femininity

long/short term orientation

  • This study focuses on the Masculinity/femininity dimension

gender protrayal

slide6
Masculinity Index (MAS)

Korea Hong Kong

39 57

Feminine Masculine

gender protrayal

slide7
Research question
  • How does the gender portrayal differ in children’s commercials in Korea and Hong Kong?

preference for masculine or

feminine values in a culture

gender differentiation

(whether there is sharp distinction between

the roles of men and women)

  • Method: Content analysis of TVC

gender protrayal

hypotheses
Hypotheses
  • H1: Characters in commercials are more likely to be portrayed in relationships with others in Korea (feminine society) than in Hong Kong (masculine society)
  • H2: Characters are more likely to be portrayed in work situations in Hong Kong than in Korea.
  • H3: There will be more sex-role differences between male and female characters in Hong Kong than in Korea.

gender protrayal

slide9

Sample

  • N=345, unduplicated

Korea: commercials of children’s

programming from KBS2, MBC and SBS

channels

Hong Kong: 40 hours of children’s

programming from TVB-Jade and ATV-

home channels

  • Public services announcements, station identification and promotional messages were excluded

gender protrayal

slide10

Two levels of coding

  • Each commercial, code:

Product category, product user, sex of

voice-over, music, presence of central

characters, setting and reward type

  • Each central character (a child, adult, or cartoon human character appears most), up to two CCs, code:

Character type, sex, age, role, employment

status, activity, and whether he/she is a

spokesperson

  • coded by two pairs of trained coders,
  • intercoder reliability ranged from 0.8 to 1

gender protrayal

table 1 sample profile n 345

%

%

37.9

34.0

19.2

9.5

15.7

14.3

9.1

4.8

7.6

7.5

7.1

8.8

1.5

12.2

2.0

8.8

Table 1. Sample profile (N=345)

Korea

(N=198)

Hong Kong

(N=147)

Product category

Snack food

Drink

Toys and character toys

Fast food

Entertainment

Education tools and services

Medicine and personal goods

Others

Chi-square: 32.7; p<0.001

gender protrayal

slide12

Product user

  • Korean sample:

12 (6.1%) for male

14 (7.1%) for female

172 (86.9%) for both

  • Hong Kong sample:

15 (10.2%) for male

6 (4.1%) for female

126 (85.7%) for both

  • No significant difference

gender protrayal

slide13

Voice over

  • Korean sample:

82 (41.4%) use male voice(s)

72 (36.4%) use female voice(s)

16 (8.1%) use male and female voices

28 (14.1%) no voice over

  • Hong Kong sample:

81 (55.1%) use male voice(s)

29 (19.7%) use female voice(s)

9 (6.1%) use male and female voices

28 (19%) no voice over

gender protrayal

central characters
Central characters
  • Altogether 372 CC coded
  • Korean sample: 109 male CC (48%), 116 female CC (52%)
  • Hong Kong sample: 80 male CC (54%), 67 female CC (46%)
  • No significant difference

gender protrayal

slide15

Relationship

  • Korean sample: 137 (61%) are in relationship roles, 88 (39%) are in independent roles
  • Hong Kong sample: 90 (61%) are in relationship roles, 57 (39%) are in independent roles
  • No significant difference, H1 rejected

gender protrayal

employment status
Employment Status
  • Korean sample: 18 (8%) are in working roles, 207 (92%) are in non-working roles
  • Hong Kong sample: 11 (8%) are in working roles, 136 (92%) are in non-working roles
  • No significant difference, H2 rejected

gender protrayal

sex role difference
Sex-role difference
  • Korean sample: no significant difference in the roles, recoded roles, employment and sex of spokesperson, significant difference in the activities of CC
  • Hong Kong sample: did not show great sex-role difference between male and female CC
  • H3 rejected

gender protrayal

results of hypotheses testing

Hypothesis

F-stat.

0.004

N.S.

No

0.03

N.S.

No

No

Results of hypotheses testing

Sign.

level

Supported

H1: relationship

H2: employment status

H3: sex role differences

gender protrayal

discussion
Discussion
  • A country’s “gender” failed to predict the gender role portrayals of relationships
  • Possible explanations:

the standardization of advertising strategy in

the Asian Market

heavy use of celebrity endorsement in

children’s commercials in Korea

women’s issues and rights are more in

concern in today’s Korea

work roles are seldom featured as children

are not familiar with work

gender protrayal

conclusion further research
Conclusion & Further Research
  • Concept of “gender of nations” needs further examination
  • Application of Hofstede to marketing and advertising research is subject to trial and error
  • The current study can be repeated for adult’s commercials to see if there is any difference

gender protrayal

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