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Yeah the Pies! F*ck The Cupcakes: A call for men to engage with gender equality

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Yeah the Pies! F*ck The Cupcakes: A call for men to engage with gender equality

Yeah the Pies

Gender equality initiative, F*ck The Cupcakes (FTC), has launched a new campaign aimed to encourage men to take action on gender equality. Yeah the Pies is an all-year-round program hoping to engage men in conversations about gender equality through a series of in-person events. 

The first event kicks off on 11 April and invites men from the Australian marketing and media industry to attend. The event is set to be an afternoon of “cooking, conversations and actual change” and will involve baking pies instead of cupcakes – an International Women’s Day (IWD) staple. The event will be hosted by Masterchef winner and mental health advocate, Brent Draper, and professional coach Iain Schmidt. FTC hopes that while cooking, men will engage in real conversations to support meaningful change. 

Yeah the Pies to bring about real action 

Criticism of IWD has been increasing over the years, with many calls for companies to ditch the morning teas and focus on real action instead. FTC founder and Innocean Australia CEO Jasmin Bedir said activities surrounding the annual day required a rethink. “We’ve struck a chord with our sentiment that International Women’s Day is meaningless if women continue just to talk to other women,” Bedir said. “But it is incredibly difficult to get men at scale engaged in the topic of gender equality, which was confirmed by the Gender Pay Gap data released earlier this month. 

“The ‘Yeah the Pies’ program will be a blueprint for organisations to engage men the right way so IWD 2025 is not again another room filled with women and cupcakes.”

Partnering with Paramount, Infinity Bakery and Bloke Coaching, the program seeks to engage what it has identified as the 30 percent of ‘the movable middle’ men in the Australian population. FTC believes this demographic is likely to be successful, educated, and more open to new ideas due to their children. They are also the group FTC believes will be most receptive to change and progress.

“A lot of men want to be involved in gender equality and do more, but don’t know how,” said Wez Hawes, Innocean’s executive creative director. “Men also find it hard to talk face to face, preferring to open up shoulder to shoulder. That’s why we’re baking some pies and strapping in to chat about some of the big, small, and sometimes awkward themes of what it means to be a man and cook up conversations that will ignite real change. 

“We’re going to show what an IWD event could look like if you f*ck the cupcakes, bring on the pies.” 

Industry insights

Through a series of real-life events, FTC is providing an opportunity for men to have conversations that they may not have previously been part of. The first event will be directed towards men in advertising, marketing and media, an industry where the average gender pay gap sits uncomfortably at +14.6 percent. In the recent landmark WGEA findings, oOh!media emerged as an outlier to this trend with a ‘negative’ gender pay gap of -2.2 percent.

Commenting on oOhmedia’s result, CEO Cathy O’Connor said: “It takes a lot for a business to achieve truly equal pay for men and women, and we’ve been working hard with a dedicated team and strategies in place for a number of years now.” 

Other positive results within the industry found that women were also out-earning men at QMS and JCDecaux Australia.

Event details

Date: 11 April 2024

Venue: Innocean Australia, 40-50 Francis Street, Darlinghurst

Time: Late afternoon 

Registrations for the “Yeah the Pies” event are available via this link


Photography by FTC.


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January Jones

January Jones is a freelance writer.

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