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Lads' mags have 6 weeks to "cover up": your reaction, please!

(290 Posts)
HelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 29-Jul-13 09:58:26


You may already have seen/heard the news today that the Co-op has given "lads' mags" six weeks to cover up their front page with sealed "modesty bags" or be taken off sale in its stores.

The Co-op says it's responding to concerns by its members, customers and colleagues about images of scantily-clad women on magazine covers.

We're being asked what Mumsnetters think of this move by the Co-op. So we'd love you to let us know: please do post up your views on this thread.

GherkinsAreAce Mon 29-Jul-13 13:54:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

waps Mon 29-Jul-13 13:58:57

Well done Co-op, I shop from Ocado mostly but if I need to nip out for extras I try to use the Co-op rather than Tesco precisely because Co-op are willing to make this kind of stand. I have 2 sons and I don't want them to think of women in the way portrayed on these mags. Also, The Star 'newspaper', on the bottom shelf right in kids' eyeline is often pure pornography. I have no problem with pornography but in the right place.

hermioneweasley Mon 29-Jul-13 14:04:58

Clearly MN is populated entirely by fantastical feminists, if this reaction is anything to judge by. Another person here who thinks this is nothing but a good move.

Well done Co-op, great to see a company standing up against objectification of women

SoupDragon Mon 29-Jul-13 14:08:32

I think it's evidence of a growing censoriousness and puritanism

But it isn't. If it were true censorship they would be removed from sale and banned completely. This is a compromise whereby they are still on sale and visible but not shoving a pair of breasts or an arse in your/your child's face.

DelayedActionMouseMaker Mon 29-Jul-13 14:25:52

This is fantastic news! Hooraaayyyy!

GrimmaTheNome Mon 29-Jul-13 14:26:31

>I think it's evidence of a growing censoriousness and puritanism

no - it is welcome evidence that ordinary parents can get listened to nowadays.

Banning these mags would be censorship, but even that wouldn't equate to 'puritanism'. It would be in the cause of anti-objectification which is an entirely different thing as I'm sure anyone with two brain cells to rub together can easily understand.

meditrina Mon 29-Jul-13 14:28:25

Good decision.

And I note that it's the Co-op (workers co-operative) that is leading the way on this.

And it's no more censorious or puritanical than the decision by British terrestrial TV to drop Miss World from the schedules - again, that was "nothing worse than you see on the beach" but that is not, of course, synonymous with being appropriate everywhere. Nor of being acceptable to customers and potential customers in perpetuity.

BeCool Mon 29-Jul-13 14:29:19

It's really not all that different from the change in the law to smoking.
The smokers right to smoke still exists and is now balanced with non-smokers/unwell/children/elderly/workers etc right to not be subjected to 2nd hand smoke.

Not that long ago, smokers smoked everywhere and in places that are imaginable now: tube trains, aeroplanes, pubs etc. Changes happened, the world was going to end. Guess what, it didn't and society is largely a better place for the restrictions.

Smoking isn't banned outright but the right to smoke is now balanced with the right of the entire population have to unnecessarily suffer tobacco smoke.

These magazines can be sold - and the people who want to buy them can. I can't see how the reader at all 'suffers' in anyway from not having sexually exploitative pictures on the covers of these magazines. What exactly is being lost here?

But now, my DD's and your DC and you and I and people in generally who don't want to see women being sexually exploited and objectified on a regular basis don't have to suffer these images when they are buying milk, just because they are stocked so Joe X and co can indulge himself.

So rather than being fanatical and puritanical, what it is really about is achieving a more balanced and fair society - for everyone!

BeCool Mon 29-Jul-13 14:31:05

Oops "imaginable" should of course read Unimaginable!

I'm thrilled by this news. Its a real step towards attitudes to women and sexuality being in your face all the time being challenged and changed. I will definitely be shopping at the Co-op more in future and I really hope that other stores follow suit.

Its not ok to have such sexual images within sight of children or those of us who don't want to see them while buying bread and milk. I don't buy the mags for the reason that I have no interest in objectifying womens bodies and having the covers obscured means my choice to avoid them actually means something. (very wordy but I hope it makes sense!)

YouCantBuyCommonSelsne Mon 29-Jul-13 14:51:09

I'd like to see this go further and into TV and media. Lets start with Corrie, EastEnders, Emmerdale, Hollyoaks, Holby City & CSI wherever.

All of the above should be shown after the watershed to ensure that kids aren't subjected to adult based content such as violence, scenes that depict accidents and scenes of murder or killing.

And let's be honest, soaps don't really paint a realistic picture of real life do they? Look at EastEnders, a soap so unrealistic, it might as well be set on the flippin' moon.

Lets also teach our kids some common sense and morality. So lets get rid of Jeremy Kyle & Top Gear. Cartoons should also be given the push too. You ever seen some of the stuff on the Simpsons?

So we've made a good start with TV there. This affords me the opportunity to segway nicely into the culture of celebrity and music. Let’s start with music. The only thing more sexually oriented than the lyrics is the content of the music videos and the behaviour of the so-called artistes. So take those iPod’s off your kids! The stuff they are listening to is way to explicit. Don't believe me? Check out Rihanna's 'Birthday Cake'.

Ok, celebrity next. Well, that's all we really need to say isn't it? A bunch of empty headed nitwits who are about as much use to society as a button is to a sock.

Ok, what's left? Err, ok let's have a pop at art and literature. 50 shades certainly has to go. I mean come on? that's got more filth in it that a pig farm. I'm fairly certain there's one or two painting that contain nudity not to mention all the sculptures that are kicking about that flaunt body parts like it's going out of fashion.

And finally Video games. Pack away those controllers and consoles. They are the devils work!

Ok, I'm sorry. Getting a bit carried away there. But as you can see there's a lot more 'damaging' material out there that YOU already allow your kids to watch and listen too.

I don't really want all this stuff banned (well apart from the garbage soaps). So what have we learned? Well, expect kids to occasionally stumble across this kind of stuff. Answer their questions like a responsible adult, and they'll grow up all sensible and normal.

Now lets all calm down and relax. Put the kettle on, and watch Lose Women. Ooops. Way too smutty. That's gotta go as well! smilewinkgrin

ohforfoxsake Mon 29-Jul-13 14:54:51

It's a half- arsed step towards acknowledging the front covers aren't acceptable without actually making a stand.

Will the magazines take it further as a result and have more explicit images beneath the covers?

Will Footasylum stop putting their provocative naked women t-shirt displays in their windows?

Will David Cameron stop gaffawing with his cronies about removing The Sun from Parliamentary buildings, and removing page 3 altogether? He'll continue to make noises about Internet porn filters but won't actually put a stop to any of it.

I loathe all of the above. I write, complain, turn magazines over. At least The Co-op acknowledge there is an issue here, but aren't really doing anything. If they really wanted to make a difference they'd stop selling them. That really would be a statement to be applauded.

Putting covers on won't make a difference. Might make it worse if anything.

Sparklingbrook Mon 29-Jul-13 15:03:15

I think it's brilliant. Page Three next to go please.

I also think that some 'womens' magazines could do with a blank cover also.

gleegeek Mon 29-Jul-13 15:06:20

I agree with BeCool!

Sparklingbrook Mon 29-Jul-13 15:08:49

Sorry, but it's a no from me to getting rid of Top Gear. Not the same at all.

GrimmaTheNome Mon 29-Jul-13 15:30:37

>But as you can see there's a lot more 'damaging' material out there that YOU already allow your kids to watch and listen too.

I certainly didn't let my DD watch/listen to that sort of tripe when she was small. Do many parents? TV/net etc are within our power to control what our kids see, to a large extent and certainly when they are very small. Its entirely different to the mags on public display in food shops. False analogy... whereas BeCools is very good.

NoComet Mon 29-Jul-13 15:34:04

I really don't care. I don't find nudity offensive.

What I find offensive is that schools and parents are too scared to talk to DCs about sex, respectful relationships and how these are distorted by the media in general as well as the porn industry.

A bit of plastic doesn't solve anything. It just allows people to side step having the conversation that society needs to have around sex and the exploitation of women easier angry

Itsjustafleshwound Mon 29-Jul-13 15:40:07

A really good move.

Itsjustafleshwound Mon 29-Jul-13 15:44:40

There is the sex talk and then there is also the sex talk.

Continuing the availability of these sort of mags gives the whole porn industry a level of acceptability and some sort of distorted expectation of sex and a awful benchmark that girls are expected to achieve.

NoComet Mon 29-Jul-13 15:47:21

waps as the mother of two DDs I'm delighted you don't want your DSs to see women portrayed as they are on the Star cover, but sadly whatever the Co-op do they still will.

I'm sure you realise this and will talk to your sons when they are an appropriate age, but loads of parents clearly don't or the sort of street heckling and other shit women get would be dying out.

Notonaschoolnight Mon 29-Jul-13 16:12:58

While we're on can we close down every Ann Summers and make it online only

YoniBottsBumgina Mon 29-Jul-13 16:14:52

There's a big difference between objectification and nudity. You can have objectifying images of women who are fully clothed, and respectful/tasteful nudes. One doesn't necessarily lead to the other. I'm glad that objectifying images of women are starting to be treated as though they are not normal. Perhaps it will help change opinions on the subject.

MurderOfGoths Mon 29-Jul-13 16:47:35

Well done co op! Good news! Hopefully they are just the first and others will follow

meditrina Mon 29-Jul-13 16:53:51

Don't the 'others' already have opaque display units for some publications?

Of course, that's not so good, as mags can get misplaced. The "pervert pouch" idea is much better protection, and I hope it catches on more widely.

The Sun might be notorious for Poge 3, but when it comes to covers, it's The Star that is the regular for crotch shots with small thong only. Not fun explaining that one to DD. (I flip other papers over the pix when I can - I assume those who want it can find it by title only).

flatpackhamster Mon 29-Jul-13 17:06:52


I don't see how striving for equality in our society can or should be linked with puritanism!!

That's because your definition of 'equality' is skewed.


But it isn't. If it were true censorship they would be removed from sale and banned completely.

Censoriousness is hypercriticality, usually with a moral bent. That's exactly what this is, not censorship.

This is a compromise whereby they are still on sale and visible but not shoving a pair of breasts or an arse in your/your child's face.

There is no compromise here, just as there is no compromise with the tiny group of people who have achieved this. They're not interested in compromise.

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