Marketers, please stop calling me Latinx

I'm glad to find that I'm not the only person wondering how on earth "Latinx" is meant to be pronounced. In a piece for AdAdge, Diana Brooks, the chief vision officer at The 3rd Eye, writes: "Marketers, please stop calling me latinx"

Everyone from brands to universities to media outlets to city governments have started defining my Hispanic demographic with the Latinx brushstroke. Everyone, it turns out, but ourselves.

She brings the stats:

A majority of U.S adults who self-describe as Hispanic or Latino (61%) prefer Hispanic to describe the Hispanic or Latino population in the U.S., and 29% prefer Latino, according to a December 2019 Pew Research bilingual survey of U.S. Hispanic adults.

And makes an important point, "hispanic" is already gender neutral.

Inauthenticity for the sake of wokeness? There’s a reason why the word feels off for most people in my heritage. Just look at the first six words of its definition: “Latinx is an American English neologism.”

Key words: American. English.

What business do American English speakers have in changing the way Hispanics and Latinos are addressed? Latinx contradicts the very structure of Spanish and our culture.

Yes, for people, gender is a construct. But the Spanish language, like most romance languages, is entirely gender-based. The door—la puerta—is feminine. The car—el carro—is masculine. Am I fighting for the inclusive rights of a door?

That creates a challenge when you have to decide whether to put more importance on gender neutrality or cultural connection. For me, gender neutrality is something that must be respected, but it’s not one-size-fits-all. And that means marketers have to respect the fact that calling most Latinos “Latinx” will be, at best, confusing—and at worst, insulting, patronizing and arrogant.


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