The Danish toy giant Lego is committing to the removal of "gender stereotypes" in their merchandise line-up, as new data shows how much more boys are afraid of being made fun of for playing with girls' toys, and not vice versa.
According to The Guardian, the conclusion of a recent survey is that since 71 percent of boys were afraid of playing with girls' toys, they were missing out on having "confidence" to participate in more activities in comparison.
Madeline Di Nonno who heads the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media ran the survey and had this to say:
"Parents are more worried that their sons will be teased than their daughters for playing with toys associated with the other gender. But it’s also that behaviours associated with men are valued more highly in society. Until societies recognise that behaviours and activities typically associated with women are as valuable or important, parents and children will be tentative to embrace them."
Lego commissioned the report themselves and it surveyed "almost 7,000 parents" in different countries: the US, UK, China, the Czech Republic, Japan, Poland, and Russia. It's the continuation of a more "inclusive" transition process for the toy company.
LEGO's chief marketing officer Julia Goldin told the outlet they're trying to make the product more inclusive. "Traditionally, Lego has been accessed by more boys, but products like Lego Dots or Lego City Wildlife Rescue Camp have been specifically designed to appeal to boys and girls," Goldin said.
The Geena Davis Institute has been giving consulting advice to Lego since the beginning of this year on the topic of addressing "gender bias and harmful stereotypes."
It has caused the company to rethink the majority of their product, and that includes even the minutiae like how they label the audiences for their sets.
In related news, California Gov. Gavin Newsom recently signed into law a demand for a gender-neutral section for merchandise at stores. While they can still have specific boys' and girls' sections for things like toys and "childcare items," they have to have a neutral aisle too.
This is in contrast to the likes of China where earlier this year it was reported the CCP wants to reinforce masculine traits into their young male population.