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Thinking About Stereotypes

At what point do you fall into (or get labelled) as a certain stereotype?

If I were to ask you what stereotype you fit into what would it be? Tech guru? Fashionista? Football Fanatic? Gamer? If you do fit into a stereotype, what makes you that stereotype and at what point did you become the stereotype?

We went around the office to see what stereotype people here assign themselves to and it seems like we have a wide range.

Jose – The Sport fanatic
Jose watches about 2 hours of sport a day and some days up to 4 hours. When he can’t watch sport he checks Sky sports and BBC sport whenever he can. Can you be a Sports fanatic if you only watch a certain sport? Well Jose watches any sport he can get his hands on! Sports fans are often associated with 'hooligans' or overly extrovert personalities. Is this always true?

Jamie – The Techie

Jamie says "A technologist will always find or create or promote a technology for a task. You need a working knowledge of the field and to know what advancements are happening.” As a developer, Jamie's profession has people label him as a certain stereotype straight away. Does that mean that he belongs to that stereotype though?

Andy – A mixture of things
Andy wasn’t sure if he fit into any stereotype, which is probably a common thought. “I like Football, but don’t go to matches and I like gaming” but he doesn’t feel he breaks that line to become either one of those stereotypes. With such an endless amount of "labels" out there, you can be defined from your taste in clothing, your hobbies and past times as well as the amount of travelling you do. Can you cross into other stereotypes?

Lanara – Bookworm
How much reading makes you a bookworm? Or is it not about the amount of reading but about your knowledge or the written word? Lanara gets through a book in about 2 days and says that people have often referred to her as being like 'Hermione Granger' from Harry Potter. Does this classify her as a 'bookworm?' Or does it just tell us she's a fast reader?

Megan – The Emo Kid
“Its embarrassing but I used to be an ‘emo’ at school. I used to wear all black, big eye liner and bunked off of school, so gross!” Are stereotypes actually classed by generation and age? Do we all go through phases of being a particular stereotype? Is it possible to change "stereotype?" Or is it a personality trait?

Adam – Geek
“Geek” and “Nerd” are often closely linked but Adam recognises himself as a Geek. The reason?… “I like geeky things, like tech, comics, superhero films, stuff like that” Already, Adam has mentioned comics and superhero films being labelled as 'geeky.' What is it about interests like this that means they get labelled in that way? Is it because they aren't 'mainstream' or the norm? Or is it because of the people who have created them?

Paul – Skater Boy
Rock music, BMX, chain wallets are all loves for Paul. He was into BMX until he was 25. Another point that Paul was keen to point out was that Skater Boys often go to gigs whenever they can, “You listen to certain music for energy whilst riding/skating so the general interest takes you to those gig as a group”. Now we've moved onto the idea of music taste classifying your stereotype or category that you fall into.

So the categorisation of these stereotypes are often unclear. When it comes to professional stereotypes, we know that as Web Designers, a clear idea of the type of people we are springs to peoples minds. They think we're "geeky" or "introvert." Often, web design is associated with people that stay up late to burn the midnight oil, or that are intelligent with above par IQs. We like to challenge that stereotype everyday with our team who have a range of personalities, with a variety of experiences from different industries and walks of life. 

There are lots more stereotypes that our industry have been labelled with. A lot of people assume that all web developers and designers are men for example. This is another myth, as we have some serious girl power in our project management team, design team, social media marketing team and the support team too! But rather than take offence or be upset by the labels we are given, we’re very happy to demolish them.

Do we believe that a person can be 'stereotyped?' We believe others stereotype you. But we're not so sure that it actually has any relevance to you as a person, or us as an industry. 

Let us know your thoughts on twitter @toolkitwebsites or on Facebook, just search for Toolkit Websites.