Amid the InfoComm wrap-up reports and trend pieces, there emerged a different sort of “AV storm” (to borrow from Julian Phillips) from this year’s show: the issue of booth babes.
David Labuskes, CTS, RCDD
Executive Director & CEO
We featured an honest critique from Shen Milsom & Wilke’s Leonard Suskin on how the use of these scantily clad models contributed to a hierarchal and divisive atmosphere in the AV industry; and it seemed to have kicked off an even broader conversation on the relevancy of booth babes in general. So much so, that InfoComm International’s Executive Director and CEO, David Labuskes, has weighed in.
In a blog post, Labuskes denounced the use of booth babes, adding that the practice “creates an environment that is unwelcome for some, that perpetuates ‘old school thinking’ which should have been abandoned 75 years ago (frankly, it should have never existed), and one which diminishes the professionalism of our practice.”
In doing so, Lasbuskes has vowed to do all he (and his staff) can do within the organization to discourage the sort of practices that contribute to this sort of casual sexism. Still, he realizes the artificiality of imposing a dress code, or the intrusiveness of administering tests on industry knowledge of booth personnel, are not effective ways to impact the overall repressive attitude that drives the booth babe trend.
As Labuskes pointed out, "in the market environment that we live within, the voice of the industry influencers, the sound of your feet and weight of your wallets carry far greater weight than the sound of my voice.”