A coalition of women's groups have argued that such highly sexualised images presented as part of their submission to
the Leveson Inquiry were ubiquitous in the UK media, and called for press censorship to tackle relentless sexism in some areas of the press.
Four nutter groups, Eaves, End Violence Against Women, Object and Equality Now called on Leveson to back a ban on sexualised images in newspapers, arguing they would not be broadcast on television before the 9pm watershed.
The groups also accused some media outlets of perpetuating myths about rape, which they argued could prevent victims reporting the crime, and called for a tougher regulatory body.
Papers including the Sun, Daily Star and Sunday Sport persistently objectified women, portraying them as a sum of sexualised body parts , claimed Anna van Heeswijk, from Object, a lobby group against the objectification of women. We have to ask ourselves what kind of story does it tell young people when men in newspapers wear suits, or sports gear, are shown as active participants, and women are sexualised objects who are essentially naked or nearly naked,
The groups are want legislation banning pictures of naked or semi-naked women in newspapers, arguing the images would not be allowed in the workplace because of equality legislation, and should not be sold in an unrestrained manner at children's eye-level
. Leveson said his powers were limited and such a change would require rock-solid legislation .
The groups also called on Leveson to recommend the replacement of the Press Complaints Commission with an independent body with teeth that women and women's groups could complain to directly. The reporting of violence against women and
girls needs to be more balanced and more context needs to be provided about its frequency, they added. Journalists should also receive training on the myths and realities about violence against women and girls, and there should be a code of
practice for the way case studies are dealt with, the groups said.
Jacqui Hunt, of Equality Now, said the groups did not want to curtail press freedom ...BUT... wanted the media to behave more responsibly.
The ever censorial Harriet Hatemen claims to be a champion of press freedom
Newspaper proprietors need urgently to agree a common new system of redress and regulation to put to the Leveson inquiry, according
to Harriet Harman, the shadow culture and media secretary.
She said the new system should be independent, apply to all newspapers and be citizen-centric. [Maybe just a slip of the tongue, she probably meant women-centric]. Harman said:
I balk at the notion of press regulation. There should be redress for complaints. I don't think there should be prior restraint, or general ruling on ethics. I also certainly don't think we need a register of approved journalists. Doctors and
journalists are not analogous.
Despite the personal battering she has taken from the rightwing media over pursuit of women's equality, she said she was not interested in settling old scores:
My discussions and arguments have been with the public as much as newspapers.
I am going to be a champion of press freedom.
Offsite: Killjoy Clare Short revives anti-page 3 rant
26th January 2012. See article
by Clare Short
Lord Justice Leveson's inquiry into the ethics of the press heard some impressive, if depressing, evidence this week from women's
groups about the continued use of sexualised imagery in some newspapers and about a culture of relentless sexism in some sections of the press.
In response, he said that his terms of reference did not stretch to such issues. But surely the depiction of half the population in a way that is now illegal on workplace walls and before the watershed in broadcasting, is an issue of media ethics?
Interestingly, the evidence put to the inquiry was censored before circulation to remove the images that are perfectly legal in millions of newspapers that spread across society.
The Leveson Inquiry should also take note of my experience to learn how the media can censor public debate. The deliberate bullying I endured was designed to stop me discussing an issue of public concern and to frighten other women off. This is
not a question of phone hacking or intrusion of privacy, but in some ways it is worse.
Tabloid vilification helped kill off a debate that would have forced Page 3 images out of British newspapers and perhaps obliged the media to behave and report in a less sexist way. Twenty-six years on, Lord Leveson should seriously consider the
case that has been made.
...Read the full article
Update: The misogyny of the anti-Page 3 brigade
31st January 2012.See article
by Gabrielle Shiner
The prudes trying to strip the tabloids of topless pics belittle women far more than any male reader could.
With the Leveson Inquiry currently insisting that the press bares all, campaign groups such as Turn Your Back on Page 3 have spotted an opportunity to force the tabloid's topless ladies to cover themselves up. And all in the name of protecting
girls like me from being terrorised by tits.
...Read the full article