Gamestation's controversial 'Cheaper than your girlfriend' slogan, branded 'openly sexist' by an anonymous female employee, has been defended by GAME's Head of UK PR, saying that 'the Gamestation brand reflects its customer base which is still predominantly the traditional core male gamer' and highlighting the chain's 'slightly edgy and occasionally controversial' image as something that its customers 'love'.
Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, the female staffer, who wished to remain anonymous, suggested that the company check it's own codes of conduct in relation to discrimination:
'I agree Gamestation should target a more core audience than GAME, but I just don't see what this slogan has to add to their campaign or to gaming in general [...] It is pretty openly sexist - girls being cheap, obviously, but it's also pandering to the old stereotype that gamers are guys. And of course any discrimination is banned by GAME's own employee regulations, so I don't see why the company itself should be able to get away with it.'
When the site contacted Neil Ashurst, GAME's Head of UK PR for comment as to whether or not he felt the advert alienated female customers, he responded with the following:
'We welcome everyone into our stores and the Gamestation brand reflects its customer base which is still predominantly the traditional core male gamer.
'Our marketing and in-store POS does, and will continue to, appeal to that audience. Throughout its existence, Gamestation has always been slightly edgy and occasionally controversial. Our customers love this about us.
Whether they agree with everything we do is a different matter. We embrace people's right to disagree and you will see this in our stores every week as our customers and staff discuss, usually passionately, the finer points of the latest games.'
Contact subsequently for comment on the comment, the female staffer suggested that using the 'edgy' line had been something of a 'cop-out'. Well it wouldn't be the first time that's happened now would it?