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Should we be setting our sights on lads' mags and internet porn as the next leg of Let Girls be Girls?

(496 Posts)
JustineMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 28-Jul-10 17:58:06

Following on from our Let Girls Be Girls campaign, we're thinking about what we might do next in the area of campaigning against premature sexualisation. We know that many of you are concerned about explicitly sexual imagery on the covers of lads' mags and the Sunday Sport, particularly when these publications are displayed at child's-eye level. We also know that some of you are worried about the ease with which children can access frankly pornographic imagery - some of it violent and disturbing - on the internet, whether on PCs or mobile phones.

We'd like to canvass Mumsnetters' views on these and related issues. Are you angry or embarrassed about lads' mags in plain view, or are you not too bothered? Do you consider the Sunday Sport or Zoo magazine to be pornographic, or merely cheeky? Is child access to internet pornography something that concerns you? If so, who do you think should be responsible for filtering out this content: parents/carers, or the internet service providers? If you have already set up parental controls on your computers at home, how effective do you think the filtering software is? An internet entrepreneur in the US has just started selling domain names ending in .xxx, with the intention of making this domain the "red light district" of the internet - see details here; does this sound like a good idea to you?

Obviously porn and sexuality is always a touchy <cough> subject. Just to make it clear, we?re not interested in clamping down on the adult use of (legal) porn; we purely concerned with its availability to children.

We would be very grateful to know your thoughts.

tabouleh Sat 07-Aug-10 16:21:10

lucyloo1 I just had a look at your website - it looks really good. I am sure there will be MNers who will find it useful.
You have obviously been through a very tough time.

A couple of thoughts:

I was just thinking that it may be useful to have your IT document available to downloand.

I don't think you website conveys what you and your DH have been through in the same way that your first post above did?

I recommend that you start a thread in the
relationships board. There have been lots of threads there about relationships in trouble due to porn.

I come at this issue from a Feminist viewpoint and that is why my research led me to the two links above.

You would probably also be interested in the following:

- the pornography chapter of Living Dolls - we are reviewing it here on Aug 25.

- The Byron Review

- Linda Papadopulus report into the sexualisation of children (unfortunately home office website seem to have lost this so not link - I have emailed them about it though).

- Object campaigh - "women not sex objects"

lucyloo1 Sat 07-Aug-10 22:04:55

Hi tabouleh, Thanks very much for your comments. I have just had a look at what I wrote and I realise that you are quite right. By the time I wrote the stuff for the website, I had already been damaged quite severely by everything that has happened. In fact, I have noticed the same sort of effect in posts from other women going through this. It becomes quite hard to express your feelings because you have to sublimate them, just in order to cope and get through each day. So, when you try to express yourself in writing, you come across as a bit robotic and emotionless - just stating the facts but, not how you felt. I think this is because when you are living with a porn addict, even a recovering one, you are living in fear of that addiction breaking through again, taking over again. I am glad you have pointed this out to me and will do another piece to try to rectify this. My husband is also going to the same, as he is having a similar problem.

Re the IT document, I have almost completed it and will put it on the website for download once it is ready - probably tomorrow.

Thanks for those links - I will have a look at them, in a moment.

StayFrosty Sat 07-Aug-10 23:07:10

wow i am late to this party. i think this is a fab idea MN towers, very doable.

and on a sucky up note, Elephants, some of your posts on this thread made me laugh so hard the baby woke up. you and your lake of common sense and your saaaaad face. grin

lucyloo1 Sun 08-Aug-10 12:06:54

Tabouleh - I have added my IT document now but, have no one to proof read it so would be grateful if you could, as well have giving me your comments. Could your email me your feedback, if possible? Thanks.

ElephantsAndMiasmas Sun 08-Aug-10 14:06:15

<Hands out lilos for the better enjoyment of lake of common sense>

ElephantsAndMiasmas Mon 09-Aug-10 13:11:59

has there been any feedback from MNHQ on this?

OliviaMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 09-Aug-10 17:13:32

hi there
thanks for the flag about this. What with school hols, it's rather quiet at MN Towers atm but we're keeping an eye on this. We'll revert when we're quorate and have had a chance to discuss best next steps.
Thx
MNHQ

tabouleh Mon 09-Aug-10 21:29:13

Thanks Olivia! (twas me who "reported" your post E&M - to riase MNHQ's attention),

ElephantsAndMiasmas Mon 09-Aug-10 21:39:09

Thanks tabouleh (great food btw ) I thought reporting posts was just the equivalent of telling the teacher, didn't realise you could do it in a positive way!

tabouleh Mon 09-Aug-10 21:44:53

Yep - it's a good trick to have up your sleeve. <<Yes - I love a bit of quinoa! BTW what are Miasmas??>>

ElephantsAndMiasmas Mon 09-Aug-10 21:54:18
tabouleh Mon 09-Aug-10 21:59:17

Thanks - Stevie Smith sounds like an interesting women. Learn something new every day on MN!

Earthymama Wed 25-Aug-10 22:07:46

I fully support this campaign, I hide the picture on the Sport every day in my local newsagents, unless the other person who does the same gets there before me!

Message withdrawn

ElephantsAndMiasmas Wed 25-Aug-10 22:24:30

Since reading this thread I've started turning over/moving mags, especially in WH Smith which seems to be the worst. What is it about Smiths?

awal Fri 03-Sep-10 21:57:57

I absolutely agree. Why should the porn capitalists have it all their way? We need to do something for dd and ds sakes

LeninGrad Sat 04-Sep-10 10:38:08

Looking forward to hearing some proposals on this.

tabouleh Wed 08-Sep-10 10:26:24

Shouldn't this appear at the top of Active Convos?

So sad and angry that the thread has stalled!

larrygrylls Wed 08-Sep-10 10:47:35

I think that porn has a terrible insidious effect on young people and something should be done. I will copy an anecdote from another thread on which I posted, for want of retyping:

I was recently chatting to my 18 year old goddaughter who attended a very expensive, relatively well known 6th form college in Surrey. She informed me of "stone faced" parties where a bunch of boys and girls got together around a table and the girls took turn to give oral sex to a guy under the table. Everyone had to guess which guy by the expression on his face (hence the name I guess). There were also "rainbow" parties where all the girls wore different colour lipstick and the guys had to accumulate stripes. I asked her how many people were formally "couples" and there were very few; it was all about hook ups and, frankly, BJs. I asked what the girls got out of the whole thing and she said it was just "fun".

I have to say that I was really shocked by the above and think that you have to look at the pervasiveness of porn on the internet and the excessive prevalence of sex stories across the media. There does seem to be a strand of misogyny within the porn too with just about every porn scene ending with the guy orgasming over the woman's face. I have no idea where that came from, or when. I do not think it has always been the case.

No idea what to do about it, especially the internet, as most of it originates abroad through numerous proxy servers. However, I do not think it is harmless and am happy to add my voice to the campaign!

sixpercenttruejedi Wed 08-Sep-10 11:01:03

Think this would be a great campaign, would definitely back it. Its an issue that has been brushed aside and dismissed for so long, people have given up even mentioning it while it slowly gets worse. A properly focussed campaign would be a lot harder to dismiss.

KateMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 08-Sep-10 15:47:44

Hello everyone

Just to let you know that we're very grateful for your thoughts about these issues, and that we're chewing them all over right now.

We'll get back with a proposed plan of action as soon as possible.

Thanks all.

KatherineCam Fri 10-Sep-10 09:18:06

I am about to go to our local COOP to ask to move away Nuts, Zoo, FHM etc. Is there any legal guidance about displaying this sort of materials? Currently they are displayed exactly at the eye level of my 6.y.o daughter. The set of the shelves in a shop is about 1.40m high so there is no way for them to put it higher (however in shops were it is possible mags can still be seen from a few steps away).
Btw in HM Smith the shelves containing magazines with various levels of pornography on a view for everyone and called "Men lifestyle"....

KatherineCam Fri 10-Sep-10 10:22:10

I just spoke to COOP customer relations representative (a woman) and she said that unfortunately due to fixtures in our local shop magazines with nudity are indeed displayed at pre-prep school children eye level and nothing can be done. I argued that we do have much taller shelves in the shop so magazines can be moved over there or indeed they can install another higher shelves - I can not see why this is a problem. It seems that while there is no official government regulations it will be very hard or impossible to stop shops displaying"men's lifestyle".
Any advice?

TheMightyToosh Tue 14-Sep-10 13:06:49

Please PLEASE do run a campaign for this. I came on here today specifically with the intention of suggesting one, and am so glad that I found this thread.

I have complained in my local tesco twice because the Nuts etc mags with two women pressing their bare breasts against each other for the pleasure of men everywhere are right in my DD's (3.5 yrs) face while we are trying to look at the CBeebies magazines! I usually turn the worst ones round in protest, but it is futile really. Nothing has changed in response to my complaints.

Even if stores don't have space to move the shelves higher or whatever, they can cover the majority of the view of these mags with plastic shields that attach to the shelves. There are no excuses. And as for those corner shops and garages that sell hardcore porn mags, they should be forced to put them in covers.

I do not want to see this stuff while I am choosing my own magazine or popping in for a pint of milk, and I certainly don't want my children to see them as part of their everyday life. I am not a prude, but I don't think the supermarket is the place for uncensored exposure of this kind.

I had thought about starting a campaign of my own - MAPS - MightyToosh Against Porn in Supermarkets! But I suspect yours will have more of an impact blush

Thank you!

KatherineCam Tue 14-Sep-10 18:36:31

I totally agree with the last post. I truly believe it is unacceptable to have such mags on show below 1.70m from the ground as I don't want to see them ether. This is degrading for all women and our silent acceptance just makes things worst.
I don't think that explanation about certain fittings in shops is acceptable in any way. They do keep cigarets (regulations) and expensive alcohol ( prevention of theft) away from general public so they can do put away these mags!

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