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The craft beer drinker stereotype

beerHere’s a graphic I pinched from Planet Beer’s Facebook page – they usually have some good stuff there.

But this isn’t one of those things, though I presume Planet Beer found it somewhere else on the web and posted it.  What I really don’t like is its attempt to paint craft beer fans as hipsters. I mean, just look at the trio of characteristics of craft beer drinkers at the left – we like organic food, listening to the news on the radio and biking or jogging alone.

The organic food thing is a blatant – and inaccurate- craft beer drinker stereotype. I’m surprised they didn’t include “more likely to grow a beard”. As for listening to the news on the radio – what? And biking or jogging alone – what the hell does that have to do with anything.

Then there’s the usage of the figures of uni graduates, as if to show that craft beer drinkers are more educated. The reference to the 42.6 per cent with a Bachelor degree is particularly annoying because doesn’t that therefore mean that 57.4 per cent of craft beer drinkers don’t have uni qualifications? Surely it’d make more sense to highlight that figure, given that it goes against the stereotype of the craft beer drinker. Unless, of course, your aim is to play up to the stereotype.

And if you were going to do that you might want to include a graphic of some hipster doofus. Oh look, that’s exactly what they did.

In case you couldn’t tell, I’m so not a fan of the bullshit “craft beer drinker” stereotype. I’m not cool. I’m not a hipster. I don’t have a beard. I don’t have tattoos. I don’t wear overalls. I don’t ride a fixie. I don’t shop at farmer’s markets. I don’t view my choice of beer as some sort of statement. I don’t think I’m a better person just because I drink a certain type of beer. I’m not an unsufferable snob. And I certainly don’t see anyone who resembles me on this laughable and stupid video – one that seems to encourage more stereotypes.

Craft beer is a broad church full of loads of different people,  many of whom share one trait – we all like tasty beer. Stop trying to create some bullshit image of what a “craft beer drinker” is. Hell, some of us don’t even like the phrase “craft beer”.

We’re not a marketing demographic, we’re people – so cut all this shit out. Especially if you’re part of the craft beer movement – purporting stereotypes helps nobody.

NOTE: as it turns out this was my 500th post on Beer Is Your Friend. Glad it was something with a bit more substance than some of the other crap I write here.

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8 replies »

  1. Have you seen this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qszwet2fz5w

    Also, this week I was party to a marketing department trying to explain the craft segment. it was hilarious watching them fumble to try and find buzzwords to define people who like good beer. To them that was the major hurdle to getting a foothold in the market, rather than making good beer.

    It’s embarrassing and sad all at the same time.

    Also… I have a beard, but no uni degree. I ride a bike but it’s not a fixie. I shop at farmer’s markets, and I buy a lot of vinyl… but it’s all dated-punk rock, Elton John and 90s hip hop.

    I am a craft beer wanker.

  2. It is abroad church indeed. And thanks be to Bacchus for that.
    Although, I saw myself in that stereotype picture.
    Organic food, tick. News, tick. Jogging, tick (although it hasn’t been called that for a while). 35-49 years old, tick. Bachelors Degree, tick. Male, tick. Spiky brown hair, tick. Specs and tidy beard, tick. Low-cut, skinny trousers? Fuck no!
    I say let’s call a halt to this whole stereotype thing. I mean, I find the skinny trousers thing really, very offensive!
    (In honesty, I AM a snob – I write with a fountain pen, ffs – but hopefully I’m not an insufferable one!)
    Either way, I share one thing in common with all other “craft beer drinkers”… I care that what I put in my mouth tastes good.

    • Oh, there are bits of me in there too – age, gender and masters degree. I think a lot of people will find something of themselves there. But a lot of people can find something of themselves in descriptions of star signs too. Doesn’t mean they’re accurate 😉

  3. I agree with disliking the phrase “craft beer” too. All those failed attempts at defining “craft”. What is wrong with the word “good”? I’m happy just to be defined as a “good beer drinker”!
    At GABS 2012, I had a discussion with some guy I sat next to for a while. He made the comment “what sort of a bloke wears cuff-links to a beer festival?”. I could have taken offence, or made some smart-arsed retort about the kind of guy who wears his high-viz work shirt to a beer festival. But I didnt, because I don’t mind the way my face looks, so I said “Me, actually. Aren’t they cool – look; one is a bottle opener, and one is a bent crown-seal). In the end, we ended up laughing and talking about the fantastic beers we’d each tried.

    • Yep, I don’t like the phrase “craft beer” but I use it as a sort of shorthand because I think everyone – those who like that sort of beer and those who don’t – has a largely similar idea of what it means.

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