This video was sent to me by a reader on Twitter.
The video, published in April 2015, is titled “DJI Lapdance event in Thailand.” I will spare you from watching it, but it’s a girl holding a Phantom, wearing tight white booty shorts and shaking her hips. A couple guys wearing DJI shirts in the background are standing behind a DJI-marked table and laughing.
So in case you thought the drone industry wasn’t sexist, you’re wrong — and there’s tons of work to do.
To be clear, this (although it looks like it) was not a DJI sponsored event. It was held by DJI dealers in Thailand.
I reached out to DJI spokesperson Michael Perry for comment.
“We have warned them (the dealers sponsoring this event) not to use our logo outside the bounds of the terms of our partnership and without our express permission,” he said.
DJI is one of the leaders in promoting diversity in the male-dominated tech industry. In February, the company hosted a “Female Pilots Awareness” month, which (full disclosure) I played a role in alongside other members of the Amelia Droneharts.
“You’re absolutely right that we continue to be proud sponsors of Female Pilot Awareness month and supporters of the Droneharts because we fundamentally believe there is tremendous potential for greater inclusiveness in the drone space,” Perry said. “We categorically do not support events, such as the one you linked to, that clearly do not share the same view. ”
To those of you who say the reason women don’t like drones is they simply don’t care about flying robots, that’s wrong. Women don’t like drones because they don’t care to be treated like an object.
So what can you do to help encourage a woman to pick up a drone and fly it themself? Don’t attend events that objectify women just to sell drones. Call out companies who do this and tell them to stop.
Hot girls shaking their booty with drones may help boost sales for a very small target audience, but it also alienates 50% of possible customers.
It’s bad for business, it’s bad for the industry, and it’s bad for humanity.