Published on November 1st, 2013 | by alninteracted0
#BoobsOrNews: Are you for or against page 3?
The topic of page three is polarising in the extreme. Many have grown up with the casual nudity in tabloids such as The Sun and The Star, becoming accustomed to volunteers baring all within the first few leafs of the paper.
Society is up in arms as to whether the page should be eradicated forever, and Essex University is the latest institution to protest against the page by banning the use of The Sun and The Star on their campus.
But what do ALN really think about page three? Is it exploitative? An objectification of women? Or is it merely just a bit of fun, enjoyment for those hard-working men who need some light relief before they hit the ‘hardcore’ news.
Here are the responses of the writers at Arts London News. You might be surprised by what your fellow students believe…
ALN chief print sub-editor, Jess Murray:
I’m all for page three girls! I believe it’s your own body so you have the right to do what you desire with it. It’s not demeaning to women. It’s your own choice to show your body off in that way, it’s not as if you’re forced or even tricked into doing it without knowing the outcome. If you choose to be a page three girl for whatever reason, just know that everyone will have their personal opinion on it, so be prepared to take that.
One of our nations finest traditions has to be the girl adorning page three of every tabloid newspaper. Every morning we are able to wake up and be graced by these miracles of nature, these fabulous, firm orbs which every man in the country wants to nestle their face between. Isn’t it also comforting that all across this small island the working man will spend his coffee break admiring the human body in its purest form. There isn’t a transit van around whose dashboard isn’t plastered with offcuts of those page three angels. But seriously, don’t hate, appreciate.
ALN features writer, Danil Boparai:
We all know by now that there is a clear division regarding page three. You either consider it as the terrible public face of porn, objectifying women as mere sexual objects, which anyone with 70p in their pocket can purchase. Or you view it as the wonderful 40-year-old British institution, whisking Jenni, 19, from Basildon, to a life of glamour and fame, all for the simple price of baring a nipple or two.
It’s been a tough year for the regular feature; it has come under fire from the likes of the British Youth Council, who stated that page three “mocks and disrespects women”. The ‘No More Page 3’ petition has gathered over 100,000 signatures since the start of the summer and is growing.
Even Labour leader Ed Miliband had a strong opinion as he blasted the white van man’s favourite, calling it “a total anachronism” that doesn’t have a place in the modern world.
Something page three offers to us all is one of the more interesting political conundrums in today’s media, as it causes opposites to attract. How can liberals and modern feminists justify wanting to censor just the bits of newspapers they don’t like, whatever happened to free speech?
Is the irony just lost on me that a right-leaning paper like The Sun can place women out of the kitchen, so long as they are poolside and free of oppressive bras? At least it supports their anti-veil agenda.
Even our Prime Minister can’t bring himself to ban the booby pages, despite his war on online pornography;”We have to always ask the question where should we regulate and where shouldn’t we regulate, and I think on this one I think it is probably better to leave it to the consumer,” said David Cameron, refraining from upsetting his pal Rupert Murdoch, of course.
According to the former Editor of The Sun Dominic Mohan in the recent Leveson Enquiry, page three represents ‘youth and freshness’. In actual fact, to most of us it represents sexism and inequality, but perhaps more importantly to Murdoch and co, page three represents sales and money.
ALN layout sub-editor, Catherine Van De Stoewe:
I definitely think that the page three girl is a part of British culture. Ask anyone on the street about page three and they’ll know immediately what you are talking about, and which paper. I work in a sports bar that regularly has the tabloid papers on hand and page three is a favourite of the local punters. Seeing the reactions the punters have to page three does not fill me with confidence that women are thought of as equals. I feel that women are turned into objects to be stared at and that it doesn’t show women in a good light – if they get their breasts out for the paper, why not in the bar, or in the club, or even the supermarket? To me, page three has had its day and needs to take a bow and have its curtains closed, but with its popularity I doubt that will happen soon!
ALN multimedia producer, Tim Greensmith:
Page three is traditional. For as long as I’ve been aware of The Sun there have been some breasts on page three. But it does seem rather absurd, in this day and age that a NEWSpaper would feature a topless model.
If it was gone tomorrow I would not care. Much.