A discussion of contemporary issues in media ethics, with olives and a twist. Made with only the freshest ingredients, shaken, stirred and poured over ice. I should also mention that I do like the odd, occasional martini. Bombay Sapphire gin and Lillet, dry and plenty of salty olives. Welcome to this cocktail of journalism and alcohol. A fine combination!

Sunday, 22 April 2007

Storm in a G-string?

The May 2007 edition of Dolly magazine in New Zealand has been recalled by its publisher, Australian Consolidated Press, because an image of a model strutting the catwalk sans g-string as her skirt billows open was deemed too offensive for the publication's "tweenies" audience.
I've included a small-ish version here, but it has been doctored, if you're offended, close your eyes before reading the rest of this post. If you want to see a bigger version of this image, it's here at this interesting blogspot for Today's Apathetic Youth.
Was it an accident?
ACP is claiming that the "little spot" they used during page makeup to cover the model's (let's call it what it is) vagina "fell off". Just exactly how this can happen using digital image management in a program like PhotoShop or InDesign escapes my thinking processes.

According to a New Zealand Herald report, a spokesperson for ACP said the picture was the result of a printing error and the new, censored editions of the magazine would be distributed shortly.
But what about this?
The picture had an arrow pointing to the girl's crutch with the caption: "Umm ... we think you forgot something."
Some accident...the subs put a caption on the photo with an arrow pointing to the model's crutch, but then they were going to cover it up? OK, I'll buy that.

What I really want to comment on is the poor state of our society when such a harmless image can cause such a fuss. Most readers of Dolly actually have the body part in question and so wouldn't be too surprised that a female model has one too. They might even see the humour in the sub-editor's little joke.
Where's the offence in this?
I can't see why it had to be censored. Unless of course ACP feared a backlash from those odiously hypocritical "family first"* types who want to continue belting their kids as a way of "teaching them a lesson", but who don't want their children to grow up with a healthy attitude towards vaginas, penises, anuses and breasts. In short, the very same uptight and twisted parents and deluded religious "do-gooders" who want to shut down any discussion of healthy sexuality, in favour of some made up taboos that effectively destroy young minds and reproduce the same repressed mentality that they suffer from.
"Get your hands off our bodies," we used to chant. And off our magazines.
And while we're at it, keep your bloody hands off our (and your) children too, you sadistic perverts.

* My apologies - this link leads to perversion and may rot young minds, parental guidance required. However, I make no apologies for linking to Richard Dawkins talking about the "God delusion". In fact I encourage young (and old) minds to go there and listen to his podcasts.

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