Why can't we just ban page three?

(326 Posts)
Dragontamer Tue 07-Feb-12 20:04:17

Brilliant points raised by Clare Short in The Independent. To summarise:
You would think that the relentless sexism in the media would come up against 'media ethics'. However, Lord Leveson says that this topic goes beyond his remit. It is not ok to have lewd pictures of women on the office wall or before the watershed, why then are these images allowed in a widely circulated, national newspaper?

Having just had a daughter, I am anxious about what messages she will receive from this type of constant negative bombardment about women's bodies.

When Short has attempted to challenge this she has been bombarded by the snide remarks about her own body and criticised as being 'jealous'.

So, could this be a new campaign for mumsnet? Let me know your thoughts...

RachelF1989 Mon 30-Apr-12 17:42:43

Oh get over yourselves.

For one these women CHOOSE to do it as part of their modelling careers. Nobody force them. These photos have been taken by a legitimate company and there has been absolutely nothing sleazy done in the process. Don't like it, don't look at it. Simple.

I would kill to look like those models.

Page 3 has been going for a long time now and I'm pretty sure it will carry on for much longer.

RachelF1989 Mon 30-Apr-12 17:49:25

Oh forgot to mention, if we are going to scrap Page 3, let's make sure both genders get the same treatment.

For example, Wild Boys, or whatever it's called. A live show with half naked men for people to drool over.

Or the "Mr Summer" competition or whatever they call it on This Morning, where women get to ogle men and choose the dishiest one.

If it was the other way around and that was about women, there would be mass uproar and that is a fact.

SinicalSanta Mon 30-Apr-12 18:05:43

Points that way, Rachel,

I find the you're just jealous defence amusing / and hypocritical
After all men's sexual jealousy has been allowed to shape the world in much more malignant ways than banning something so unnecessary as that. I thought we were all.equal now. Have I misse something?

SuePurblyingoodVOICE Mon 30-Apr-12 18:10:30

Don't like it, don't look at it. Simple.

If you actually think it is that simple then I think you've a fairly sketchy understanding of how society works.

And it's not exactly 'the same treatment', is it? There isn't an equivalent to Page 3 for men to ban - your examples are different issues altogether. There are already lots of beauty/swimwear ogling competitions for women (Miss World?), equivalent to this Mr Summer thing. Personally, it's all the same to me if you ban them for both sexes, but saying Mr.Summer is the same as page three is simply not true.

I assume Wild Boys is the modern Chippendales? Yes, OK, let's ban that too - just as soon as the strip and lap dancing clubs go. For it to be the same, one of the Wild Boys would have to be regularly pictured in the biggest selling daily newspaper pretty much as naked as the law allows. So that's with a flaccid penis, right? Wild Boy Jim, with his cock a'lolling on one thigh, next to a little inset box pretending to give his views on current events. Just harmless fun, nothing sleazy. British institution, innit? confused

SkaterGrrrrl Mon 30-Apr-12 18:25:13

"Oh get over yourselves.For one these women CHOOSE to do it as part of their modelling careers. Nobody force them. "

Rachel these choices are not made in a vacume, but within the context of our sexist society as it already exists. If a young girl with a nice body could as much money and get as much positive attention for starting a charity or training as a teacher as she does for stripping, then it would be a real choice. But sadly we live in a world where the most value a young girl has is a pretty face and a nice body. So posing naked for page 3 is not a real choice in any meaningful sense.

"Page 3 has been going for a long time now and I'm pretty sure it will carry on for much longer."

Slavery went on for a long time. Plenty of bad things last a long time, its no reason to keep them! Should we have allowed slavery to continue just because it was around for a while?

bronze Mon 30-Apr-12 18:28:44

I'm quite happy for them to ban the wild boys whatever they are. And the chippendales and anything else like that

Xenia Mon 30-Apr-12 19:03:38

Feminists aren't really in favour of banning things. We want more freedom of the press, not less. We need to fight a constant battle to stop censorship,. I want to live in a free world where people an propagate views I find repellant. The English do not go around banning things very often, thank goodness.

RachelF1989 Mon 30-Apr-12 19:10:25

"Rachel these choices are not made in a vacume, but within the context of our sexist society as it already exists. If a young girl with a nice body could as much money and get as much positive attention for starting a charity or training as a teacher as she does for stripping, then it would be a real choice. But sadly we live in a world where the most value a young girl has is a pretty face and a nice body. So posing naked for page 3 is not a real choice in any meaningful sense."

Like I said, it's still "their" choice to do it. There are many stunning people out there, some choose to go in to modelling, glamour modelling, choose to be a teacher or start a charity; nobody makes that choice for them. I really don't see how their choices to do it have anything to do with anyone else anyway?

My examples were of how men can be seen be "sexualised" in today's society as well. May be not a direct comparison, but it is still men doing their jobs with their bodies/ looks and to earn money from it. But society doesn't bat an eye lid at that at all. Both men an women make these choices to do these jobs, but it shouldn't be for us to decide based on our somewhat prudish attitudes.

Slavery did go on for a long time you're correct. But there is a huge difference between slavery and Page 3 modelling. You just can't compare the two of them because they are completely different. Slavery was evil, horrible, and made such a horrible existence for many people. Page 3 is someone's job that they CHOSE to do, and I wouldn't think twice that they enjoy it as well. So, again I ask, what is it to us??

ArgyBargy77 Mon 30-Apr-12 21:54:50

the choice argument is the weakest one - and it just gets repeated and repeated, usually for lack of a real argument! If everyone is free to make their own choices, then everything everybody EVER chooses to do is OK? Right? Because they chose to do it....WRONG! People make choices based on what they believe is available or possible to them, that does not mean that those choices do not impact on themselves and the society around them.

As adult women we learn to filter out the way page 3 etc make us feel, so go to a supermarket with an 8 year old girl, and see what her reaction is to porn placed at her eye level (actually placed at her 4 year old sisters eye level). It is not good, she didn't ask to see porn on her way to buy sweets, or the latest kids magazine, she has no option but to see it. Seeing it so casually placed sends a message that this is OK, this is aspirational, if the parents around this child don't challenge this, she will then grow up seeing this as a viable choice, so she made a choice based on the society she lives in, pretty sh*t society that - lets change it then!

With my 8 year old we turn the papers over - declaring loudly that the porn on display to children is disgusting, we demand to see the manager and/or write to the head office. I follow what Object is up to with their on-going campaign against lads mags and porn papers and would love to do more.

oh and what about the mens! when people say lads mags and p3 show us how open we are about sex, they mean how open we are to seeing naked female flesh, there is no true comparison - only women’s bodies are cheap enough to be plastered about in this way.

MoChan Thu 03-May-12 11:20:04

It makes me so concerned to think about the message this sends to young minds, both male and female - to boys, you may reduce women to their body parts, to girls, this is what you should be, and this is how you should behave. Though clearly, the messages have more to them than that...

Yesterday, I asked the chap who runs our village shop to put The Sport on the top shelf instead of on the bottom shelf, right next to the children's magazines. I kind of wish now that I had just asked him not to stock it any more.

mrnobody808 Sat 05-May-12 18:43:35

I registered here, specifically to reply to this thread. There is some amount of nonsense being talked.

The argument about it being a choice is not a weak argument. It is a perfectly valid argument. No one has the right to tell someone what they can and cannot do with their own body. My body, my rules. Your body, your rules! No one forces anyone to appear on Page 3 or in "lads mags", and no one forces anyone to buy The Sun or "lads mags". You may not like what is featured in these newspapers or magazines, but you do have to live with it.

There are two types of people in this world. Those who just want to be left alone to get on with their lives, and people like you lot, who won't leave us alone.

I am not say that you aren't entitled to an opinion, of course you are! Debate and varying opinions within that debate should be welcomed, but i really object to people saying that something should be banned, just because they don't like it. If we were to ban everything that someone didn't like, we wouldn't be able to do anything.

Also, as far as i am aware, The Sport hasn't been in print form since it ceased publication in the summer of 2011.

MoChan Tue 08-May-12 12:02:00

Yes, yes, we're talking nonsense. It must be all that air our heads are filled with.

A publication called The Sport was on the shelves in my village shop last Wednesday. It had a revealing image of a woman in an obviously sexually subservient position. I did not conjure this from my imagination. I held it in my hand. It may not be the original publication, but whatever it is, it should not be on the low shelf near children's magazines.

It's not a question of 'don't like', mrnobody. We are not discussing tastes in food. We're talking about the brainwashing impact that this has on young people, the effect it has on our culture in general, the effect it has on how people view themselves, its contribution to a society which gives permission for us all to regard women as sub-human.

It's not as simple as like or dislike. And despite what you say about choices, well, sorry, but no-one forced my daughter to look down and see the image on that 'newspaper', but she's 4.5. Do you really think she made the choice?

I'd love to see page 3 go for good. Out of all the shit that's out there, nothing quite normalises the objectification of women as much as having a picture of a near naked woman in a daily 'family' newspaper.

janmoomoo Thu 31-May-12 12:53:28

Mrnobody - I think I have a bit more sense and intelligence than to disagree with something just because I don't like it, that seems rather shallow and I would hope I put a bit more thought into things than that.

You mention people being left alone to get on with their lives - unfortunately it is impossible for anyone to live in a vacuum. We all see hundreds of adverts everyday, watch TV, read papers, talk to friends, and all these things are influenced by and make up the culture we live in. And the the UK that culture includes an acceptance of being able to freely and casually oggle a woman's naked breasts over breakfast. I don't want that to be part of my culture.

And as there is no equivalent of naked men available so freely in a daily paper it therefore represents inequality which I think is wrong.

startail Thu 31-May-12 13:20:47

Because breasts are beautiful!

boodles Sun 08-Jul-12 15:30:12

OMG I totally roll my eyes when people bring up stuff like the chippendales, as if that is ANYTHING like the sexualisation of women that has gone on in society since year dot.

I don't want to see any sort of equivalent of men. I just want our young people to grow up not just thinking that girls are objects for sex. I couldn't give a hoot about the minority of peoples choices (those that 'choose' to be in P3) because those very tiny minority are affecting every single woman and how they are thought of in society. I am fed up to the back teeth of seeing naked breasts and my young children seeing it every time I go into a newsagents. Lads mags and the ilk really make me feel ill. It is, again, normalising women as sex objects. While we have that sort of thing going on we will never have equality.

Zaraa Fri 20-Jul-12 20:08:02

Hi may I ask a couple of questions?

1. What happened to "my body my choice"? Shouldn't women have the right to choose what they want to do with their own body instead of feminists making the choice for them? Isn't feminism supposed to be about freedom?

2. If you don't like The Sun then don't buy it, noone's forcing you to buy it are they?

3. Do you realize you are just giving The Sun and Page 3 loads and loads of free advertising?

4. Page 3 models are all consenting adults who get paid very well. It's a job like any other. Some people fix cars for money, some pose in front of cameras for money. What's the problem? Why ban this and put a lot of women out of work?

5. If breasts are so evil and so "harmful" to children (children have all seen their mother's breasts anyway), should we ban women from going topless at the beach too?

SardineQueen Fri 20-Jul-12 20:28:00

Totally agree with OP.

Page 3 should have been banned years ago, I hated it when I was a primary schoolgirl, I hated it when it was a secondary schoolgirl, I hated it as a young woman and I still hate it now.

I am going to eat now but will be back soon. How interesting that people have joined MN just to speak in favour of soft porn in public. How refreshing and unusual.

Zaraa Fri 20-Jul-12 20:34:46

Care to answer my Qs? Anyway there are plenty of things I dislike, but I don't campaign for them to be banned just because I don't like them.

SardineQueen Fri 20-Jul-12 20:43:46

I would like to know why it so important to you for men to be able to view soft porn in public every day.

i have to go and watch my young daughters do some kind of "show" now, apparently, but would be keen to hear why you think children, young girls and teen girls, as well as older women, need to be subjected to men ogling page 3 in public, on transport etc, every day in the UK. I am sure there is a solid, important reeason.

Zaraa Fri 20-Jul-12 20:54:43

It's about choice and freedom. I don't even buy The Sun btw because IMO it's more of a comic than a newspaper but that's my choice not to buy it.

And I wouldn't have any problem with someone sitting near me on a train reading it, neither would I have a problem with sitting near a woman reading a magazine with muscular men posing with their shirts off.

I don't like seeing overweight or ugly people in public either but I can't demand they all stay at home because I don't want to see them.

Also isn't it interesting the countries which permit things like page 3 are typically the countries where women have most rights? The middle east and africa would never permit page 3 but look at how women are treated there.

SardineQueen Fri 20-Jul-12 20:58:27

It's about the freedom of men to have the choice to look at sexually appealing young women with their clothes off, in the most inappropriate of circumstances, and in public.

They aren't choices and freedoms that I'm getting on board with, thanks.

SardineQueen Fri 20-Jul-12 21:05:17

Oh and

1. By that argument you presumably have no issue with people looking at hardcore porn on their ipads/mobiles on the tube, nor to people looking at hardcore images of men and/or women on the bus/tube etc.
2. People are forced to look at it every day who do not buy it. Often when in school uniform and on public transport with very obvious comparisons going on.
3. So what.
4. This is the new argument isn't it. Oh you will make people unemployed, that's horrible, you Horrible Feminists. Not going to wash really. I'm not going to stand up to keep any job that hinges on the object (man, woman, child, animal, whatever) that is there simply for the reason of giving men an erection.
5. Images of women which are taken to sexually arouse men are different to women's bodies just being what they are. People generally understand the difference. Except of course for people who feel that the right of men to look at tits on the tube to make their cock twitch is an essential right.

EclecticShock Fri 20-Jul-12 21:09:11

Agree with zaraa. The Victorian era was not too hot on women's rights.

EclecticShock Fri 20-Jul-12 21:10:37

Why is it so important to stop men desiring women?

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