Is #NoMorePage3 Really All We Have To Get Upset About Today?

This morning I awoke early, and with a start, from a bad dream. While I came to, I peered around my bedroom wondering where I was.

This morning was a particularly bad morning – there have been many since Hugo died.

This morning, I sat in bed with a cup of tea, catching up with my social media accounts on my phone. I do this on many mornings, trying to psych myself up for the day ahead.

This morning, I looked at my Twitter timeline in particular with dismay and frustration. It was full of tweets about The Sun not binning Page 3, after all.

My dismay and frustration was not related to The Sun. It was related to my thoughts of:

“Is Page 3 really all you have to get upset about?”

Yes, it is disappointing that The Sun persists with Page 3. Yes, the Murdoch empire is probably having a good old laugh at everyone who celebrated the apparent demise of Page 3 earlier this week.

Murdoch is not known for his philanthropy. He is a [insert preferred expletive/insult here]. It’s hardly a revelation.

And boobs making a reappearance on Page 3 is far from the end of the world.

It is not as if The Sun is the only place anyone who seeks such titillation can find it (pun intended). There is, too, the argument that if you don’t like it you don’t have to buy it, or look at that page.

This morning, I composed responses to several tweets, but deleted them. I obeyed my ‘count to 10 before tweeting’ rule. However, since then I have counted to about a billion and I am still pissed off, so here we are.

Before you come at me with pitchforks, I am a feminist. To me, feminism means that whether you are a human being who is a female, or a human being who is a male (or identifies as either gender), you are equal, and deserve equal opportunities in life to fulfil your potential.

I cannot abide the double-standard of how boobs are acceptable in a national daily newspaper, but women are asked to cover up while breastfeeding in public.

As a woman who has struggled with my weight and with body image for most of my life, I would love to see more positive images of women’s bodies in the media. Positive images that encourage us to celebrate our bodies, even the bits we don’t like, and help not waste precious time in our life obsessing about it.

As the proud owner of a pair of 34F bosoms, I have regularly been subjected to objectification. My boobs have been gawped at, stared at, and talked at. I have had such classic quotes like “Cor look at the tits on that!”, and been invited to “Get ’em out.” Needless to say, such ‘invitations’ are declined, usually by ignoring them.

Banning Page 3 might be a positive step forward, but it is not going to stop the objectification of women.

To be honest, it’s not just about Page 3. I get frustrated by those who I call ‘unconstructive moaners’, those who will passively aggressively complain about something, but take no positive or constructive action to help resolve it.

Many of us will tweet our views on current affairs. Many will wring their hands about whatever issue is topical, writing tweets describing how awful they think it is, making sure to include the relevant hashtag.

Twitter chatter and hashtags are fantastic for raising awareness, but too many people confuse such tweets with taking genuine action.

Without further activity, sending tweets simply expressing a point of view are unlikely to generate change.

Twitter will often be ablaze with talk about a particular topical issue. There will be lots of handwringing, and talk of ‘we need to something about it’. Then the topic fades from the news agenda, the hashtag flurry stops, and folk return to tweeting about the usual every day stuff.

There are so many important issues besides Page 3 affecting women. Issues that affect women every single day, not just when they are highlighted in the media.

From the top of my head, there are things like cancer, female genital mutilation, women forced to work in the sex industry, women suffering domestic abuse, miscarriage, baby loss, the shambles that is our perinatal mental health provision.

Passion about a particular issue is wonderful. Just please, make sure that passion to change the world sees the light of day outside of Twitter and relevant hashtags. Follow through with genuine action. Carpe diem, JFDI (just f*cking do it).

Let’s practice a bit of perspective, too.

Thank your sun and stars that Page 3 is the only thing that got on your tits this morning.

________________________________________
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Post Comment Love

26 thoughts on “Is #NoMorePage3 Really All We Have To Get Upset About Today?

  1. Victoria Welton says:

    A great post Leigh. I do agree with Emma’s comments about someone for every issue but I do completely understand where you are coming from. I took all of 5 minutes to read a post about it – which I shared on Facebook and then people had a major discussion on my timeline which I didn’t get involved in. All that happened was that I got a bit annoyed about it and then moved on with my day because, as you say, I have far bigger things to deal with! Thank you for linking up to #PoCoLo x

    Like

    • Leigh Kendall says:

      Blimey, people do like to use social media to get heated about an issue – which is great if they’re actively campaigning, but not so useful if they’re just getting their knickers in a twist. Thanks for reading and commenting xxx

      Like

  2. Michelle Payne-Gale says:

    Brilliantly post, Leigh, here flippin’ here! ‘Unconstructive Moaners’ is such a perfect term, they truly are everywhere. Frustrating to say the least. One of my favourite lines is; “Don’t talk about it, be about it”. Goes perfectly with JFDI! *Sigh* if only all of us could be blessed with #NoMorePage3 being the biggest worry/concern in our lives.

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  3. Notmyyearoff says:

    I think the PR for this paper pulled a fast pone with this and they have been nothing less than creepy about it all. I agree its definitely not the biggest problem out there but understand why its got so many so angry. I simply dont look at it and its a shame it still exists in these times and sometimes I think people put their energies into something like this to try to try to fix at least something in the world. Very eloquently put as always 🙂

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  4. Honest Mum says:

    Such an interesting post Leigh, I was relieved that p3 was stopped being a feminist myself- there are very few places in the world it would have been acceptable- but I do also appreciate certain things, while important might receive a saturated response.

    I also think the nature of twitter and blogging is that it is ever-changing so one second we tweet about dinner, the next world politics. It’s what I love about it really.

    You are right about action- twice from seeing charitable tweets, I went and actually donated. I didn’t simply RT without further action and I do worry people think social engagement alone is enough. It is something but more is needed. Much more.

    I also think I personally get over excited about many things I want to get involved in, some people never follow through on those plans- and I forget or get sidetracked as we all struggle with time and what we can focus on.

    Thanks for linking and sending you much love, you know more than most what is important in life. Much love x

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    • Leigh Kendall says:

      Thanks, Vicki – you’re right about Twitter. It’s fast-moving, and is about anything and everything. Wonderful you’ve followed up on tweets with charity donations. I agree, I think there are some who think social engagement is doing something, when it’s really not.

      I do understand the upset around p3, and all the issues – I’m just too emotionally drained to engage with it.

      Thanks for your considered comment, lovely lady xxx

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  5. Emma says:

    I can totally see where you’re coming from – and of course there are bigger things to worry about than specific issues like page 3, but where would we be if there wasn’t someone for every issue? Page 3 is important for me because it is in the most powerful newspaper in the UK (whether we like that or not) and symbolises every day misogyny – it would be symbolic if it stopped. Campaigning on social media is really important (for all causes and charities) and the No More Page 3 campaign has really benefited from the tweets today.

    Having said that, I cannot imagine how it must feel to see such huge media coverage of something like this when, as you say, there are people going through horrific trauma and grief day after day. Waking up how you describe to see all of that unfolding on twitter must have been frustrating, as you say. Your strength and dignity is awe inspiring, here and always.

    Could not agree more with you about action being needed, not just the armchair-piety that Twitter enables.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Leigh Kendall says:

      Thanks Emma. I completely understand why the Page 3 debate is important. What riled me was my thought that, to borrow your phrase, the level of armchair piety. I was wondering how many of those tweeting about it will be protesting actively about it once it stops being newsworthy – not just about Page 3, but so many other issues too.

      Thank you so much for your kind words, and for understanding my moment of frustration xxx

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  6. mummyshambles says:

    Good post. I don’t agree with Page 3 and I certainly don’t appreciate men who irresponsibly leave the paper on cafe tables for anyone to see. However, I’ve read many accounts from ex-glamour models and what comes across is how many vulnerable girls have been taken advantage of. A lot of models did their work before the internet existed and what they consider to have been a bad choice on their part is now just a Google away. There is no escape from it and I can’t help but feel sorry for them. We all make poor choices but not all of us have to pay for the rest of our lives.
    Banning page three won’t make much difference in the big scheme of things but at least it will stop idiots from leaving tits all over the table in Costa. xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Leigh Kendall says:

      Oh yes, there are so many sad stories of models being exploited – “if you do this, I’ll make sure you get famous…” and such things. It’s another example of the objectification of women. It would be great to see Page 3 banned, and women to be viewed with better respect. My biggest gripe with the story this morning was that I could see it was another example of people using Twitter to say how upset they are about something, but would be unlikely to actually take positive action, and anyway would have forgotten about it by the time it is no longer newsworthy. Thanks for commenting xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Tim says:

    Completely agree. Even as a man who thinks there is no place in our modern world for Page 3, I find myself wondering if the level of furore it has generated is commensurate with its impact. I don’t see how it can ever be a game-changer, and there are surely other areas where there is greater gender inequality and oppression. But Page 3 has become the lightning rod, even though it seems to me to be a case of treating a single symptom rather than any fundamental causes.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Hannah Budding Smiles says:

    Love it! Every word is so true. Today I found out that my Nan’s Alzheimer’s medicine is being taken away and the remnants of her being, the tiny glimpses of the woman she was, will be gone within a couple of months. That upsets me more than a pair of boobs that a woman has chosen to be paid to show. No, I don’t like the objectification of women but as you say, it goes way further than Page 3. How about we celebrate women like Malala Yousafzai and make a big noise about the work that she and many other women do rather than focus on giving Murdoch even more publicity?xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Leigh Kendall says:

      Thanks, Hannah. I’m so sorry to hear the news about your Nan. It’s really sad. I agree – we spend a lot of time protesting against the objectification of women, which is important to do, but we seem not to put the same energy into celebrating inspirational women like the wonderful Malala Yousafzai. Thanks for commenting xxx

      Like

  9. Mummy Writes says:

    Oh Leigh I’m so with you on this! Even before my loss (because now everything is pretty much trivia), I would have agreed with you. I couldn’t give two hoot(er)s about this. If you don’t want it don’t buy it.

    I remember my Hubby used to buy Loaded and all those men’s mags years ago, so I went out and bought a woman’s equivalent (with pics of blokes in silly poses with not much on) – he hated it! While he didn’t really care about the images in these mags, he did see how it might feel on the other side. I proved a point, but it doesn’t mean that I thought it should all stop I just didn’t want to look at women’s bits over my breakfast. So does this mean Loaded and the like will stop too now? I doubt it, and I imagine there are plenty of women who’d protest. Yes, the Sun is an outdated sexist rag, but then it doesn’t pretend to be anything else! As you say so well, there are much more harmful things done to women than this.

    Liked by 1 person

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