Blackberry’s Queer Ad for the Straight Phone

I must confess that though I would like to, and now possibly even have time to, I watch very little television. I usually forget that it exists, unless it’s the Olympics, in which case I am there. Thus, it was only this week (watching my one show I watch, which is now on again) I caught a glimpse of this unexpectedly queer little Blackberry commercial.

It caught me off guard! Not only are there gays, but there are gays sporting some rather aggressively fashion-forward mustaches, in West Hollywood no less! What do you think?

Does the Blackberry have any chance of ever redeeming itself as either hip or queer, two things that are delightfully conflated by this ad? I’d say a Blackberry is the straightest phone, but then again Riese has one. And I’d say intuitively the iPhone is the queerest phone, but our lady-team’s fleet of Androids is giving that title a run for its money. (I’ve got an EVO, Sarah’s got the Incredible, Tess has the brand new Droid X, Laneia’s got the Hero, and Kelsey just adopted a baby Droid Eris.)
Anyway, I thought the fellas in this ad were awfully cute. And then there’s a chic woman dressed in black, and a biker! So many alternative lifestyles, I’m all atwitter.

Will the Blackberry ever be cool? Or queer, because obviously those are interchangeable terms.

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!


Taylor has written 136 articles for us.


  1. I have a blackberry and I love it. It seems so much simpler than the iphone. Maybe that’s a bad thing to most people? I don’t know. I think it’s great. I mean, I know it doesn’t have as many apps and it’s not apple. But I can still do pretty much just as much with it as you can do with an iphone, and I don’t have to have itunes, which I hate with SO MUCH PASSIONATE FEELING. Also, I don’t have to have att and I can actually make phone calls.


    • i really like my blackberry too. i bet the iphone or whatever those other phones would do a lot of stuff, but i think i already do too much stuff. I don’t want something that will further degenerate my attention span. I know this might sound crazy, but I think having a blackberry instead of these other machines is better for my brain?

      • I agree. I mean, I’m sure Words With Friends is fun and all, but if I wanted to play Scrabble with my friends I’d have them over for game night and there would be drinking involved. I prefer to win fun nerdy wordy spelling games face-to-face.

      • i think the iphone would actually be better for your brain, since its super super simple, by design. android is great for developing intense mobile adhd (blackberrys less so) but the iphone is a monomaniac.

      • No seriously, it’s true. I would never get anything done because I would be too busy playing kitten jump. Brickbreaker gets old fast, and I only know 2 people that I can bbm, one of which I live with, and the other doesn’t know how to use it because she’s 70. So.

    • You know, that’s funny because I have an iPhone (which I love mainly because it’s so pretty) and I feel like Blackberrys are super complicated. Like I was trying to look up a number on my friend’s and I felt like I was trying to navigate the dashboard on a spaceship.

      But then again, that’s how my friend feels when she uses my iPhone, so I guess it depends on what you’re used to?

  2. I happened upon this commercial recently too and mistakenly thought it was a parody at first because of the dude’s mustache. And also because a gay couple was being featured. Why am I still surprised by these things?

    • Also, I have a fake mustache on my face. Maybe Blackberry will send me a free phone so I can BBM the “chic woman” from the commercial. I mean, I’ll know if she read it, so don’t even try!

  3. I used to be a Blackberry user and I always felt like it a very queer phone choice – mostly because in my workplace they were usually favored by lady executives who wore power pantsuits w/ lesbian collars. But I never really associated them with queer men.

    I enjoy seeing gay people in commercials for products that are not purpose-built for the lgbt community. My secret career goal as a copywriter is to one day cast a queer couple in a commercial that would typically feature a heterosexual couple, like for home loans or something. Then my work will be done, I will retire from advertising.

    • Like that Ford commercial with the gay couple in amongst all the other couples/people/families. That one makes me smile.

  4. I have a Blackberry, and it’s one of the most reliable phones I’ve ever had. Most of my friends have iPhones and they’re always showing off their apps and games, but put us all in a lowlight dive bar type of setting, and I’m the only one who has a flash and can take a picture. Plus, my data plan is a helluva lot cheaper then most of theirs. But you know, they bump phones like fists and exchange info or some shit. I guess it’s all about what you want to be able to do with your phone?

  5. I didn’t actually see the whole ad, just looked up when my friend said, “Oh god, that mustache!”
    Then I had to explain ironic mustaches. Luckily we discovered Step Up 2 The Streets was on, and everything was better.
    (also ha! I figured out how to be a member on this biatch!)

  6. Oh… it’s a MAN with a moustache. How disappointing.

    Facial hair on women = win. It’s ok if you havta fake it to make it.

  7. that was really cute!

    taylor, i love you, and you know this about me, but i have to disagree with your assertion that iphones are queer. as you’re well aware, i live in the suburbs will all of the straight people and EVERY FUCKING ONE OF THEM has an iphone. you should see them all at gymnastics practice, just scrollin’ and touchin’ their screens and wipin’ their screens and scrollin’ some more.

    it’s enough to make you weep.

    • yeah, here in my (brief) suburban time, everyone’s got one too. well, actually, weirdly, 18-twentysomethings have blackberrys but most everyone else has an iphone.

      i think its going to enjoy massive success among tech-inept people because it’s both pretty and very easy to use (once people realize that).

      since the iphone is so mainstream now, i don’t think it’s queer any more. but sometimes i think the gays are early adopters with apple products. in its earlier days i think this was so.

  8. I’m an Android gal myself, but Blackberries are great devices depending what you want them for.

  9. yeah, everyone and their mum and their boyfriend has an iphone, it doesn’t seem very queer to me?

    i’m getting an android tomorrow!! v excited.

  10. I don’t have a smartphone. In fact, I’ve had the same phone for at least 4 years. But recently I’ve been shopping for a new phone so have been really comparing models.

    First off, I will NEVER own an iPhone because it’s from Apple and I refuse to buy technology that is overpriced and underwelming because a multi-million dollar ad campaign tells it’s the hip thing to do.

    Secondly, when I ask my friends who have smart phones about them, it seems it’s only the blackberry users who are consistently satisfied and have no buyers’ remorse. When it comes down to actual functionality, Blackberry is the workhorse that keeps going.

    • I am super impressed that there is a cell phone on this earth that lasted 4+ years. I could care less about the iPhone considering I don’t even have an ipod, but agree with Taylor that apple just works better than IBM or Dell (specifically since those are the only two other computers I have any experience with.)

  11. Apple products just work! I did not need a multi-million dollar campaign to realize that my Mac outperforms any Windows run computer.

    • I think the “just working” thing is Apple’s strongest angle. They are sexy and you plug them in and then they do simple things very, very well.

    • hhhnnnnnnggggggggggg…must…resist…gah!

      well, i tried but i have to say something here. i strongly disagree with that whole “outperform” statement, especially since the OS is only a part of what makes a computer run well. a quick search of benchmark tests show that apple products do well but they aren’t the top of the heap, especially when you factor in bang for your buck.

      hell, i used to be a mac but when looking for a college lappy i switched teams, simply because seeing that spinning beach ball every time i had photoshop and safari open at the same time made me want to sit on a knife. money was also a factor. but mostly knives.

  12. I just got my blackberry and i absolutely love it. my roommate has an iPhone and is constantly complaining about it dropping calls and messing up. My phone is reliable and i don’t need all of the extra distraction that an iPhone would bring. I have a hard enough time paying attention in class.

  13. Was it just me, or did the West Hollywood palm-tree montage starting at :20 feel very “L-Word intro”?

  14. What does it make me if I have a crappy Nokia that can *allegedly* surf the Internet but I don’t really believe it?

    • Super duper! I’ve got a Nokia. I lurves it. It’s the “older” n810 because I can’t bear to part with my Razr, and I don’t see a future where I want to carry 2 cell phones. Maybe I’ll upgrade to the n900 with the phone someday. I saw someone on the innertubes install Android on their n810 and my heart went all aflutter.

  15. my iPhone got stolen at Ikea. either that or it’s lying dead and dusty underneath a pallet of versatile solutions for modern living. can’t make this shit up!

  16. cute ad.
    and ive got both an iphone (for fun) and a blackberry (for work). the iphone i use for pictures, texting, reading, yelping and quick calls, but if i want to actually have a conversation that’s longer than 15 minutes without having the call dropped, BB it is! obviously this is also a function of AT&T being absolute shit, but still. that being said, the iphone still wins. why? because it’s prettier.

  17. I just saw the Blackberry ad and did a search for it and found this site.

    As an owner of a marketing company, I’ve found Blackberries to me much more productive for professionals. It’s more secure, it’s easier to email & message (especially with a Blackberry Enterprise Server on your network), and if you’re someone who texts while driving (shame on you! but I know there are some of you out there), it’s just simply easier to type on a physical keyboard than a virtual one on a screen.

    I am excited to try out the new Blackberry Torch coming out on Thursday (the one with the touchscreen AND slide-out keyboard)!

  18. Apple is dumb and Blackberry sucks your soul. Nokia ftw!

    The fact that I’m a middle class girl living in south america (meaning I could NEVER afford either phone, let alone be able to fully appreaciate all its features or pay for the service each month) might make me biased, BUT I DON’T CARE.

Comments are closed.