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What is a man? A response to Gillette

Exclusive: Meet the CEO Who Put His Company on the Line To Stand Up to Gillette’s ‘Toxic Masculinity’ Ad

The following was written by Ilan Srulovicz, the CEO and founder of Egard Watch Company, explaining why his company produced an ad to counter Gillette’s recent commercial on masculinity.

The story behind making the video is interesting. I made the ad completely alone. The voice in the video is mine and the editing is my own.

I was told by most people around me and in my company that making this video was a terrible idea and could not only hurt my brand but me personally as the CEO.

I used my personal funds on the video because I was worried about the backlash.

The main feedback was, “This will draw attention away from women’s issues,” “The political climate right now won’t support a film like this,” “Ask yourself why no other company is doing it,” etc.

I considered releasing it anonymously but after some thought, I realized an individual releasing the message wasn’t going to have the same impact as a company doing it. I decided to risk it and post the video

I think what put me over the top is a quote I heard that says all actions come out of either love or fear. Releasing it anonymously felt like fear. Putting my company on the line for a message I believe in felt like love.

I went with love.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • ghostsniper January 21, 2019, 6:19 PM
  • Marica January 21, 2019, 7:37 PM

    Generally speaking, I like men.

  • Steve C January 21, 2019, 8:24 PM

    While I have enough sin in my life for all of us, I wish he might understand the difference between comprise and compose. Still, he displays more creative skill than I ever could.

  • Roy Lofquist January 21, 2019, 8:24 PM

    Two classics:

    “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat. ” ~ Theodore Roosevelt

    “If you can keep your head when all about you
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
    If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;
    If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
    Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

    If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
    If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
    If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
    And treat those two impostors just the same;
    If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
    Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
    And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

    If you can make one heap of all your winnings
    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
    And lose, and start again at your beginnings
    And never breathe a word about your loss;
    If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
    To serve your turn long after they are gone,
    And so hold on when there is nothing in you
    Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

    If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
    Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
    If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
    If all men count with you, but none too much;
    If you can fill the unforgiving minute
    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
    Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
    And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!”

    Rudyard Kipling

  • tanstafl January 22, 2019, 7:28 AM

    Makes wish I could afford an Egard watch

  • BillH January 22, 2019, 8:03 AM

    Srulovicz ’24 (if he’s an American).

  • Casey Klahn January 22, 2019, 10:55 AM

    To quote one of my leadership instructors at Ft Benning: “Now that is a fucking man!”

  • ghostsniper January 22, 2019, 12:30 PM

    I bet they double down.

  • EZ Money January 22, 2019, 2:02 PM

    WE of the sane community of men salute you sir. Well done. Stand tall and show this to your “advisory” staff.

  • Jeff Brokaw January 22, 2019, 3:52 PM

    Very well done. Celebrating the virtues of men to build them up rather than tear them down … what a concept!

  • jwm January 22, 2019, 4:57 PM

    Gillette could make amends by:
    1: issuing a formal apology to its customers. A REAL apology, not “sorry you were offended by…”
    2) buying 1,000 hours of prime time advertising and running this ad for Egard watches. They can have a one second window in the lower right corner of the screen saying “Paid for by Gillette”


  • David January 22, 2019, 5:23 PM

    The conflicts and flavor of life. What endures in the end, is enduring strength, honesty, moral judgement and goodness, that which is good for the life of Man, and by that meaning all humanity. That which uplifts the human spirit, and shows a light where there was darkness.
    You can always identify the political and the angry ideological, as they wish to capitalize and profit from the worst within in us; fear, hate, anger, envy, lust, avarice, dishonesty.

    At the least, what was the Gillette ad about? Chastising all men for not being better men, or being demeaning of all men because some men fall far short?
    Is that were they trying to sell ? An ideology or razor blades? At some level, they lost sight of what they are about as a company, and went on a tirade about something else.
    Unsurprisingly, their target audience just didn’t like it.

    Is this a reply, or simply a re-affirmation of our deepest hopes, of how we wish to aspire to the heroic nature of Man by the CEO of Egard Watch Company? This makes us look up, and is inspirational. Too bad that the ideological harpies at Gilette have fundamentally misunderstood the nature of human beings. And that tells us a story, too.

  • Howard Nelson January 22, 2019, 6:51 PM

    David, it’s noteworthy that you put aside your sling instructing the thick-skulled Goliath Gillette and applied your well-stropped sharp razor of reason to cut through the latest weed of corporate witlessness. Well done!

  • Tom Hy;land January 22, 2019, 8:10 PM

    Sorry David… I think you saw some other Gillette ad. The one I saw was chastising WHITE MEN, not all men… for being aggressive sex fiends and women haters. The subliminal message throughout… supplemented with split-second vignettes intended to drive home the message… was WHITE MEN bad… all other men pretty good. And this is intended to hypnotize voters that the BIGGEST WHITE MAN… Donald Trump, is to be beaten in 2020. Though Donald is kinda orange is beside the point. Watch Stefan Molyneux’s dissection of this commercial…

  • Mark Carpoff January 22, 2019, 8:14 PM

    Good Job.

  • Island Girl January 22, 2019, 8:14 PM

    You rock sir

  • Tom Hyland January 22, 2019, 8:51 PM

    My last comment was deleted. The Gillette commercial was anti-white male. It was very obvious to me. Any critical thinking individual would see that. Here’s an other take, a video if you dare click, of how slanted the Gillette message was…

  • madtntaxpayer January 23, 2019, 10:14 AM
  • Rob De Witt January 23, 2019, 2:47 PM
  • Bill W. January 25, 2019, 9:33 AM

    I thank God for the decency, honor, Love, and wisdom you’ve shown, Ilan Srulovicz, to have taken time to put together such a creative and right thinking piece. It honors your company’s watch qualities. Thank you from so many more than just I, who take the time to express appreciation for you, as right thinking people.
    Such effort illustrates Galatians 5, for the better of us: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
    Nobility of the Spirit reigns over darkness…..

  • Vince January 29, 2019, 9:59 AM

    Perfectly done Mr. Srulovicz! When the wife asks what I’d like for Father’s Day I have the perfect answer this year!