’48 Go Conquer’, the mobile network for people ‘living in those reckless 48 months between your 18th and 22nd birthday’ is seemingly never short of controversy.
Since I reviewed the service just after it first launched at the beginning of the year, 48 have outraged the Irish public with their lurid, raunchy TV and radio adverts, and their ageist criteria for joining the network. They generated more bad press this week by posting up an advert for a ‘Head of Rejection’ summer job on their Facebook page.
If you happened to have missed the ad on Facebook, here is what it said:
“48 is recruiting a Head of Rejection to join the team. The Head of Rejection needs to find those who aren’t 48 material. We want someone who can say NO. 48 members need to be 18-22 and living the best 48 months of their lives. The Head of Rejection needs to be able to do spot checks to make sure 48 members meet those credentials as well as manage our rejection phone line. For more details on the role check out our job spec. This is a role for the summer, so if you’re a student or recent grad, and live a hectic life, you’re exactly who we need. Send your CV to Missy.Fortyeight@facebook.com. Go Conquer.”
They also uploaded a job specification, with the key responsibilities including “creeping on Facebook” and “attending gigs and parties” which sounds more like a bit of a dropout, rather than someone with a job.
Many people were offended by the advert posted on Facebook, with comments such as “Creep on Facebook – is this a joke??!!?” and “ageist hiring policy too” posted below it on the page.
A moderator from 48 Go Conquer, Emily, who originally posted the ad posted a couple of responses to comments. It seems that some of them may have been overlooked. One Facebooker wrote: “Hi 48 – do you realise your job ad is illegal? The Equality Act says you can’t discriminate based on age. Would you like to respond to this?” There has so far been no reply to the comment, although it is a mutual feeling resonated by other commenters.
I contacted 48 Go Conquer parent company Telefónica to ask for a comment on the publication of the advert, to clarify the job role and also to determine its approach to language in the advert that could be interpreted as ageist or discrininatory, but as yet I haven’t received a reply.
Are 48 Go Conquer taking advantage of their exposure on Facebook? Is it fair to discriminate against applicants just because they’re not 18-22?