FCB Launches "Queen Rules" to Challenge Gender Bias with Playing Cards
Global Campaign Features New Games Where Queens Rule Supreme
On International Women’s Day, FCB Inferno, the global advertising agency’s London office and creative lead behind the award-winning- Sport England’s “This Girl Can,” is launching “Queen Rules” – a new way to play cards, where Queen outranks King. This campaign is designed to get the conversation about gender equality on the table.
With support from Unibet, the campaign will launch with simultaneous live events and tournaments of Queen Rules poker on March 8 in London, Stockholm, Malta and more to be announced. A social experiment film, created in partnership with production company Archer’s Mark, will be released on the same day.
Competitors will be playing with limited-edition cards that celebrate powerful women of all different shapes and sizes, drawn by sixteen unbelievably talented female illustrators from womenwhodraw.com, a website that champions female illustrators – especially those of color, LGBTQ+ and other minority groups.
All proceeds from the live events and merchandise, including T-shirts, art prints and playing cards, will be donated to HeForShe, a solidarity campaign for the advancement of women initiated by UN Women. We truly believe that play can be a powerful tool for change, and hope that with enough support for the campaign, we can help fight for a fairer world, one hand at a time.
The Queen Rules project started when a five-year-old girl questioned why King ranks higher than Queen in a deck of cards. This simple yet powerful idea is one way of sparking conversation around the unconscious gender bias that surrounds us – because sometimes the bias we don’t see is as damaging as the bias we do.
The agency is challenging people everywhere to change how they think and play with the new rules. For examples of how to play, and which games work with Queen Rules, visit queenrulesproject.com or join the conversation with #QueenRules.
FCB Global’s CCO Susan Credle says: “A father is asked by his five-year-old daughter why the King is a better card than the Queen. And this campaign was his answer. Unconscious bias slowly, subtlety shapes who we become. Listening to how someone else views the world empowers us all.”
FCB Inferno’s CCO Owen Lee adds: “This crushingly simple insight came from a five-year-old girl asking a simple question that we all struggle to answer. We are all guilty of unconscious bias and as a communications business we have a chance to do something about that. Queen Rules is a way of playing any number of card games that will change the way people think. So, the next time a little girl asks ‘Are Kings better than Queens?’ the answer will unequivocally be ‘No, it depends how you want to play the game.’”
Nataly Sopacuaperu, Head of Events at Unibet, says: “Unibet are proud to be involved in the Queen Rules project. It is a fantastic idea that highlights where in society we have gender bias. As a brand, our ambition is to make all of our players feel understood, and challenging these kinds of stereotypes is one way to do this.”
Glenda Stone, Partnerships Director for International Women’s Day, explains: “Challenging the status quo is an important part of the journey toward gender parity. This is what makes the Queen Rules project an exciting, innovative and powerful campaign for awareness raising. Questioning a familiar circumstance to provide an alternative is clever. Unibet and FCB Inferno are clearly innovating with impact when it comes to forging and making a #PressforProgress.“
Find the games, limited-edition art prints, T-shirts and more information at: www.queenrulesproject.com. Join the conversation with #QueenRules.
Agency: FCB Inferno
Chief Creative Officer: Owen Lee
Senior Art Director: Ben Edwards
Senior Copywriter: Guy Hobbs
Senior Art Director: Jack Walker
Senior Copywriter: Ali Dickinson
Senior Project Manager: Bridie Scriven
Senior Designer: Sarni Strachan
Senior Account Manager: Sabrina May
Director of European Communications and PR: CC Clark
Women Who Draw Illustrators
Karla Hernandez – Mexico // Sally Reynolds – USA // Paolo Saliby – Brazil // Zixuan Zhou – China // Christine Suggs – USA // Maya Sariahmed – USA // Jenna Stemple – USA // Louise Rosenkrands – Denmark // Nicole Rifkin – Canada // Paola Villanueva – Spain // Linny Malin – Canada // Nikki McClure – USA // Pearl Law – UK // Heather Hardison – USA // Anna Wanda Gogusey – France // Cecile Gariepy – Canada
FCB (Foote, Cone & Belding) is a global, fully integrated marketing communications company with a heritage of creativity and success dating from 1873. Based on a deeply developed understanding of diversified local markets and global cultures, FCB focuses on creating “Never Finished” campaign ideas for clients that reflect a deep understanding of the brand’s past, a respect for the present and an anticipation of the future potential. With more than 8,000 people in 109 operations in 80 countries, the company is part of the Interpublic Group of Companies (NYSE: IPG). Learn more at and follow us on Twitter and Instagram (@FCBglobal) and Facebook (FCB Global).
Unibet (part of the Kindred Group) is a premium all-product brand with a passion for online gambling, offering all types of Sports betting as well as Casino and Games, Poker and Bingo in 20 different languages across more than 100 countries. At Unibet, their ambition is to be the experts in understanding what players really need to make informed bets that enhance their passion for the game. That is why they proudly say they’re ‘By players, for players’.
About International Women’s Day
Marked annually on March 8, International Women's Day (IWD) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day is also a call-to-action for accelerating gender parity. IWD has occurred for well over a century, with the first March 8 IWD gathering supported by over a million people in 1911. IWD belongs to all groups collectively everywhere. IWD is not country, group or organization specific. The IWD 2018 campaign theme is #PressforProgress and calls for greater gender parity. For news, resources and a general global round up of activity, head to www.internationalwomensday.com
Women Who Draw
Women Who Draw is a resource for people to discover talented women, women of color, queer women and non-binary professional artists. You can find them at: http://www.womenwhodraw.com
HeForShe is a solidarity campaign for the advancement of women initiated by UN Women. Its goal is to achieve equality by encouraging men and boys as agents of change to take action against negative inequalities faced by women and girls.
Archer’s Mark is an award-winning modern studio, renowned for creating timely, bold and innovative work across commercials, feature films and interactive experiences. They have produced campaigns for some of the world’s biggest brands and agencies. The company's most recent feature film, Notes on Blindness, earned three BAFTA nominations.