'No More Page 3' is a cause I have supported for a long time. Before talking about why, I'd like to clear up a few things. The campaign has been accused of trying to 'censor' the news in a similar vain to the Charlie Hebdo attacks (which is quite frankly, ridiculous) so I would like to remind people of the definition of censorship:
"Censorship is the suppression of speech, public communication or other information which may be considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, politically incorrect or inconvenient as determined by governments, media outlets, authorities or other institutions"
In other words, the 'man' trying to control the media. A petition and group of people trying to change an outdated feature by discussion and campaigning, in my eyes, is very different.
A further criticism of the campaign (seemingly championed by Jodie Marsh no less, I'm not sure when she became Twitter's moral compass) is that it is anti-feminist by removing women's choice about how they display their bodies. Should these people do a little light research however, they would find that the campaign is in complete support of women getting their kit off however they like in the appropriate setting, like 'lads mags' - the campaign is about context.
The main thing you need to consider when deciding if you support the campaign is - do you think a topless model has a place next to the news? What is that really saying to the readers - the casual sexualisation of women is okay? This newspaper is for men? The news is for men?
I remember being at a friends house when I was quite young, we were sitting in her living room and I picked up the newspaper. Why not? I read it at home. I remember being very shocked and confused as to why there was a topless women in the front of the paper. Newspapers are something many households buy daily and have around the house, what are we teaching our young people when they take a look - that men have a right to see women's bodies? That women are expected to show them?
The sexualisation of women is a topic I have discussed on my blog before. In one of my teaching placement classes of 12 year olds you would be surprised how many of the girls hitched their skirts up to shocking lengths and applied heavy make up. Or perhaps you wouldn't be surprised.
When you think about the fact that there are pornographic images in the front of the newspaper - doesn't that strike you as insanely weird in the 21st century? Can you imagine Huw Edwards beginning the 6 o clock news "Before the shocking images in Syria, here's one for the boys". It's just insane.
Perhaps the boys at The Sun just have way too much fun photographing topless models or more to the point are afraid without them, their poor quality journalism just won't sell papers.
The stunt The Sun pulled this week, letting everyone think they had pulled page 3 only to bring it back the next day with a big two fingers up to the campaign really shows how little regard they have for women and the contribution page 3 has to many wider women's issues. In a way, if they didn't want to pull it, fair enough - that's their call, but 'trolling' the campaign really illustrates a much bigger concern.
What are your thoughts on the campaign and page 3?