Apple Music’s Jimmy Iovine hit the wrong note when discussing the streaming service’s new ads targeting women. Rather than inspiring excitement about the streaming service among the desired demographic, he inspired ire by implying that those with an XX-chromosome combo can’t figure out how to find music on their own. Iovine’s comments came during a CBS This Morning interview on November 19, and he later apologized.
The opinion that got Iovine in hot water stemmed from a discussion about the ads in which musician Mary J. Blige and actresses Taraji P. Henson and Kerry Washington highlight the benefits of Apple Music’s curated playlists. “I always knew that women find it very difficult at times — some women — to find music,” said Iovine. “And this helps makes it easier with playlists, curated by real people.”
It didn’t take long for social media users to begin crying foul over Iovine’s remarks, calling him out for implying that women are somehow less capable than men of finding new music. It didn’t help either that he said, “I just thought of a problem, you know, girls are sitting around talking about boys. Or complaining about boys, when they have their heart broken, or whatever. And they need music for that, right?” Women do talk about things other than boys and heartbreak, believe it or not.
After the uproar, Iovine issued an apology for his comments. “We created Apple Music to make finding the right music easier for everyone — men and women, young and old,” he said in a statement. “Our new ad focuses on women, which is why I answered the way I did, but of course the same applies equally for men. I could have chosen my words better, and I apologize.”
While many women seem to agree that Iovine’s message wasn’t great, we don’t expect Apple Music to face too much fallout. The popular service has now racked up 6.5 million paid subscribers since its June 30 launch.