Boobs Or Brains: Which One Makes A Better News Headline?

Well it is nearly 2013, but last time we checked, we are still being objectified by mainstream media and society. Sad. We’re not even talking about countries where women aren’t allowed to work, dress a certain way, go out in public without a man, speak etc.

We are talking about our so-called “progressive” liberal democratic western civilization. We recently heard about a protest that happened last week in the UK outside the offices of The Sun Newspaper who run Page3. (We loathe to include a link but you’ll see why we did a littler further down…)

An award-winning organization called Object! who make it their mission to fight against this sex-obsessed and “sex object” culture decided to camp outside the building on the paper’s 42nd anniversary and challenge their portrayal of women. For those who haven’t heard of Page 3, click on the link above and you will see what they are all about. The scary thing is that any underage kid could click on their website, or open the pages of the paper and be bombarded with near-naked women baring their breasts.

Is there no accountability for newsmedia these days!?

We spoke to Sophie Bennett from Object who told us why they felt it was important to get the attention of Page 3.

“OBJECT protested alongside Turn Your Back on Page 3, and other anti-Page 3 campaigning groups outside News International on the 42nd anniversary of Page 3. We delivered a 6ft birthday card covered in images juxtaposing the portrayal of women and the portrayal of men, with space for protesters to leave their personal messages objecting to Page 3,” she said.

“Our message was clear: Page 3 reduces women to sex objects, it is sexist, racist and ageist and it has no place in our national newspapers. We want to see an end to media sexism in our press. News International called the police but when the Police arrived they ended up signing the petition!”

It is not just about a group of feminists who hate seeing women’s boobs plastered all over our TV screens, magazines and newspapers. Object have encountered some alarming statistics relating to violence and the objectification of women.

They, together with Eaves, Equality Now, and the End Violence Against Women coalition, filed a report titled ‘Just The Women’ and presented it to the Leveson Inquiry, which examines the culture, practices and ethics of the press in the UK.

“The report consists of an evaluation of the content of eleven British national newspapers over a two week period in September this year. It examines how crimes of violence against women are reported, and how women are portrayed more broadly. The fortnight’s study found over 1,300 pieces of editorial and images which illustrated different forms of media sexism,” she continued.

Object has found that the overwhelming portrayal of women as sex objects in society plays a role in maintaining inequality between women and men, which is really sad and it is about time they took accountability for this. It is a movement that is recognized even by the United Nations Convention to Eliminate Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) which has since repeatedly identified the links between the portrayal of women as sex objects by the media and sex industry, with attitudes that underpin violence and discrimination against women.

If this isn’t enough to make us think about how we as women want to be show by the media, then what will? More rapes? More acid attacks?

“We aim to create a sense of community that unites us against accusations of being a ‘prude’ or a ‘killjoy’ for standing up to sexist media stereotypes. And we aim to use this evidence to make it loud and clear that the portrayal of women, and the reporting of violence against women, must be on the agenda in all debates regarding media reform, ” said Sophie about why this issue must be addressed.

Their aim is to create a community of like-minded people who can share their own stories and join with them in making the media realize that these discriminatory portrayals of women are not just a bit of ‘harmless fun’.

Watch the video of their protest. We hope it challenges your thinking as young women about what our role in media and news should be. Enough with the harmful and destructive thinking that causes some of us to take off our clothes to get attention. Our value is worth far more, and it is time we started using our voices to make a difference.


 

 

 

 

6 Comments

  1. Please spell this sexualisation, spelling it with a ‘z’ is the US English spelling.

  2. Thanks for the comment, we are a US-based website, hence the spelling that way.

  3. Pingback: Want To Sell A Product? Violence Against Women Is The Way To Go!

  4. Pingback: "Boobs Aren't News!" Video Experiment Shows Blatant Sexism In UK Newspaper

  5. Pingback: Is The Sun Newspaper On The Verge Of Ditching Sexist Page 3 Section?

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