Media Temple Ad Degrading to Women?

Sex Sells … Web Hosting

(mt) Media Temple is regarded as an upscale and professional web host. The design-centric company prides itself on its professional and quality clients. To most and for most, the company represents what a quality web host should be.

Recently, though, some believe that the company has begun to push their reputation as a professional web hosting provider and have delved into the realm of degrading themselves, and women. The ad below was run by (mt) Media Temple in The Web Host Industry Review‘s January 2008 issue.

Media Temple

The picture features the (mt) Media Temple logo stamped or Photoshop’ed onto a woman’s breast. Besides the company name and URL, the only text on the ad says “Serious support,” which is most likely a reference to the woman’s shirt.

The picture has caused some to question Media Temple’s strategy in marketing themselves as a professional and mature web host. This seems to go against their brand and what they seem to believe in (sophisticated design and copy writing). It looks like the woman is about to scream profanities at the photographer and/or is completely intoxicated. The photo doesn’t look professionally shot – it was probably taken in a club or busy bar with a consumer camera. You can’t see anything above the woman’s mouth, so it’s very difficult to tell who she is.

It’s no secret that the web hosting industry is inhabited by more men than women, but some believe that Media Temple is going well beyond the boundaries of racy ads established by GoDaddy. Does the ad make the web hosting industry look chauvinist? What will women web hosting industry professionals and customers say about the ad? Is this ad totally disrespectful to them and to women in general? What affect, if any, does the ad have on the Media Temple brand?

Emory Rowland

I'm editor and keeper of the flame at Clickfire, fanatical social media blogger and builder of Internet things from way back. My love for social media and success with organic search led me to start my own consulting company. Apart from the Internet, I could be considered pretty worthless. More...


  1. sensitivemale

    Who is mediatemple trying to win as a customer with that ad?

  2. Gecko

    It worked for Godaddy

  3. van gogh

    Sex sells!!!! Whether we like it or not. Take a look at the Super Bowl commercials this weekend and then tell me it doesn’t. And yes, it even sells to women, not just men. And unless you have a degree in marketing, this post has really no merit other than it being a commentary.

  4. woop woop

    ummmm..go daddy buys super bowl ads with hot hot ladies and never mentions their product sooooooo lets get over it

  5. Emory Rowland

    A friend of mine who uses Media Temple Hosting mentioned that he thought the ad wasn’t so shocking as it was inconsistent. I tend to agree with that notion.

  6. Areyoukiddingme

    Whoever thinks this ad is inappropriate needs to take a trip to Europe, then think again. What is this world coming to…

  7. JSHAW

    Have you seen American Apparel ads? or ads in Vice magazine? The takes party photos and hosts with MT so i wouldn’t be surprised if he was the photographer behind this ad. i don’t know for sure but just speculating.

    Media temple is known as an edgy new age hosting company, and this ad clearly shows that. It looks like its going after all the bloggers, photographers, musicians, fashionistas or for lack of a better word hipster who hold a huge online presence on the web.

  8. David F

    about this ad, there are regional standards.. since they’re in LA, maybe this isn’t over the top?

    about their hosting service was psyched, ended up disappointed.. see

  9. George

    I’m going to call bs. Even back in ’08 (mt) had better web designers than that (ie. the fonts in your ad image are all disproportioned, and the photo quality is way below ad standard for a real company), and I find it strange that image is nowhere else on the Internet other than your site (

    • Emory Rowland

      George, it’s from a print magazine.

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