Sportsbet Australia is taking bets on what name Bruce Jenner will choose should he transition to a woman. Grow up Sportsbet: this isn’t a “novelty bet” this is a deeply personal issue.
Here’s something that will leave a bad taste in your mouth today. A press release from Sportsbet, the Australian online betting company, about former Olympian Bruce Jenner.
It’s insulting, demeaning, transphobic and simply in bad taste. The betting company taking “novelty punts” on which name former Olympian and reality TV star Bruce Jenner may or may not take should he make the step towards transitioning to a woman. The press release reads:
“Online bookmaker sportsbet.com.au is giving punters the chance to have a punt on what name he/she will choose.
Zoey is leading the charge at $7.50 ahead of the much more extravagant selection of Chastity at $9.00, while a grandma name (he is 65) such as Agnes is a $11 chance.
Belinda ($15) and Brigette ($16) have been regularly linked as potential choices for Bruce but if he wants to go all Alfred Hitchcock and take his mother’s name of Esther, that’s a $51 shot.
While we love the idea of it, Bruscilla is $101 while Dame Edna rounds out the market at $501.”
The gambling company, who usually stick to horse racing and football scores, have decided to take the shameful and borderline salacious step of betting on a person’s transition. It’s exploitative discrimination .
Before you stop to swallow your disgust read on, as it gets worse.
“Fair play to Bruce, it takes a lot of balls to em…cut off your balls. We expect a lot of interest in this market ahead of the big reveal,’’ sportsbet.com.au’s Will Byrne said.”
You have to wonder if they honestly think that fair, decent Australians are okay with this? Because that’s the audience they are trying to engage isn’t it?
Sportsbet’s motivation is to appeal to the culture of “blokieness” they play upon. However this ‘novelty bet’ is simply a failure on their part to give their own audience any credibility or respect.
They seem to think that by mocking the transgender community their mainly male customers will be amused.
But you know what? I think they’re dead wrong.
While the majority of Sportsbet’s audience probably have had limited contact with the transgender community lets give them the benefit of the doubt –most of them would see this stunt being in bad taste.
The reaction on social media was overwhelmingly incredibility at the insensitivity and virtual head-shaking at the crassness.