One week out from International Women’s Day and the press releases about women “embracing equity” and information regarding upcoming events exploring the theme are coming hot into the inboxes of any reporter with a slight interest in women.
The only problem is that ‘Embrace Equity” is not the official theme for IWD 2023, rather the official UN Women’s theme is “Cracking the Code: Innovation for a gender equal future’.
As I wrote last year, Google “International Women’s Day” and you’ll come across a very official-looking, we-own-all-of-this website, that claims to determine each year’s theme. The website continues to share very little information regarding who is behind it, how it’s funded and how and why it determines its theme. There is no “About Us”, no names listed or clear contact information given – other than a form you can fill out regarding sponsorship opportunities.
However, it does list a number of “corporate partners” and declares the “global campaign theme” continues all year to encourage action, and proudly declares that International Women’s Day “has been around since 1911”.
John Deere is a “proud part of International Women’s Day” – its own ad is featured there on the website. Other partners include engineering firms and at least two weapons manufacturers on the IWD partner list, including Northrop Grumman, which “specialises innovating low-cost, highly reliable and precise weapons and ammunition for artillery and mortar systems”.
So who is behind the non-official internationalwomensday.com website, that will support your event with merchandise, determine what it believes should be the theme for the year and choose official charity partners?
Scroll to the end, and it lists its “contact” details – a generic email address, followed by a postal address with a company name: Aurora Ventures (Europe) Limited.
Google Aurora Ventures and you’ll land on options for getting in contact for some “women’s equality marketing” services.
As I suggested last year, perhaps the slogans are even worse. A weapon of distraction intentionally designed to enable big businesses and governments to avoid addressing more challenging political matters around the 8th March every year.