Sexual harassment stock photography


The folks over at The Hairpin have collected what is shaping up to be a lovely collection of sexual harassment in the workplace stock photography. It's looking really good today. Really good. You know what I'm talking about.



  1. I want to work at the place where there is a serious lipstick lesbian workplace sexual harassment problem. Please?

  2. Stock photography is *so bad* it boggles the mind. If you don’t want custom photos taken or can’t afford it (or just plain don’t need it), don’t have any photos at all on your website.

    I mean really, I don’t trust any business that uses stock photography these days. That includes the smiling lady with a microphone headset next to the “customer service” link.

    It’s so silly from the photographer’s point of view, too – stock photography is so cheap these days, the best you can realistically hope to get is a couple thousand dollars a year, and that’s if you’ve got thousands of photos, you actually know what you’re doing, and add new stuff constantly. And if that’s you, you could be making a living as an actual pro photographer doing real creative stuff. I suppose if you don’t have that talent and you have a lot of free time, stock photography is a way to pay for some of your equipment (which you only need because you’re doing stock photography… a strange cycle).

    1. penguinchris: I’m next to you here. I just can’t see how someone can use stock photos (specifically, the people ones) and still take them seriously.
      I think this abundance of horrible stock photography is a great self reflection on our society. It represents the oversaturation of our senses that are pushed at us–and which we swallow whole. I see these photos as the same hyperrealism as reality television, CSI, pop divas (I’m looking at you, gaga), and most importantly…why so many people today are bored with life.

  3. It bothers me how many commercials there are where they say that a product (deodorant, shampoo, car) will make a man more successful at their job, and they demonstrate this by having some female coworker give them a “Let’s bone” look.

  4. Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful:
    Many years ago i fixed copiers all over the Loop and was on the receiving end of the behavior depicted in that collection, several times a week. I sometimes look back wistfully (“i used to be hott”), but it was very annoying, distracting, unwelcome, stressfull and it was abusive. I pretty much had to take it, and pretend to like it, or lose my job. I swear i was on some kind of office manager list…

    “Dominating Businesswoman” really, really, takes me back! Thanks, Sean!

    1. At least you didn’t work a temp job in the prison library during the female inmates’ visiting hours. I can tell you that it was sometimes rather intimidating.

  5. Here’s a question…If it’s your job to be a photo model in one of these pics, can you sue for harrassment?

  6. That collection is OK, but a better collection is what Corbis sells:

    Some of the captions are gems:
    “Man Pinning a Woman to a Train Car”
    “Businesswomen Standing in Bus, Spraying on Man’s Face”
    “Businesswoman Grabbing Man’s Buttocks”
    “Woman pulling off Middle Eastern businessman’s necktie”
    “Man Flashing Women in Street”
    “French Soldiers During the War in Algeria”
    “Naked young woman lying on couch, holding stop sign”
    “HP names former SAP chief as chief executive”

    And my personal favorite:

    “Dirty Old Man with Buttons”

  7. Put all together like that, that looks like one of the funnest places to work.
    In the last one he’s just standing on the desk with his winkle flapping in the wind, and she’s just giving a bashful “ohh pleease, I have to work here” look.

  8. Is it odd that “right thinking” people believe that workplace sexual harassment is really, really, bad and vile — and yet, pictures purporting to depict it are considered delightfully amusing? Imagine that these were pictures purporting to represent, say, animal abuse. Is there any scenario under which boingboing writers or readers would find them funny? Even if they were absurdly overdone…

    I can’t help but think that many who openly purport to abhor sexual harassment secretly don’t think it’s all that bad. Am I wrong? Not trolling, just find the phenomenon odd…

    1. It’s because it primarily happens to women, and women are second-class citizens on this patriarchal planet.

    2. I don’t know. Animal abuse is not at all funny, but a picture of a sad kitten looking up at a screaming action-hero with a hatchet intended to be an honest portrayal of what animal abuse looks like?

  9. In stock photo land, women harass men more often than the other way around. I want to live in stock photo land.

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