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Competition Time. October 26, 2005

Posted by Winter in body politics, gender issues, WTF.

By Siberian Falls  

Sometimes you hear a story on the radio that makes you drop your jaw in disbelief. I was walking home for lunch when the news interrupted my otherwise pleasant listening to the Jo Whiley show on Radio 1. I know what you are thinking, this is what I get for listening to radio 1! I know, will I ever learn? This was their leading story, as copied from their website.

‘Zoo magazine is in trouble for running a “Win a boob job for your girlfriend!” competition on their front page. Inside it said “Make your lady a more rounded individual with our feel-good, selfless, world-first competition. Zoo is giving away a £4k boob job for your partner and a £1k cash prize for you!” The ad could put pressure on some women to have potentially harmful surgery and so is irresponsible, the Advertising Standards Authority ruled.’

Win a ‘boob job’ for your girlfriend?!? A spokesman for the magazine has countered criticism by saying with relation to the women concerned ‘obviously we would ask them permission first!’

Which of the following is more depressing as a feminist? The very existence of this type of competition or that fact that a significant proportion of entrants receiveded are actually from women?

The radio 1 website are inviting comments on this issue. If you want somewhere to indulge in some good old fashioned ranting this afternoon , you may visit the page here:




1. Rex Mottram - October 26, 2005

That is unreal!!!
Why do so many people, guys in particular, have this thing about changing the shape of things. I admit that being gay I possibly have a different perspect on the female body than a lot of guys, but I have a wide range of female friends and the last thing I would want any of them to do is have a boob job, I suppose the media has a lot to do with having the perfect body. I found your ‘blog’ while flicking through hope you don’t mind me put my bit in.

2. Siberian Fall - October 26, 2005

Hi Rex, you’re more than welcome to put your bit in here anytime!

I agree the media is crazily pushing the ‘body perfect’ ideal through our magazines, newspapers, television programmes and advertising. It’s good to know not everyone subscribes to this ideal!

Apparently a lot of the general public think this is ‘just a bit of fun.’ But it isn’t is it? I wish more people could see that.

3. Winter - October 26, 2005

I actually did a little post on this crap back in August.

4. tekanji - October 26, 2005

Is it sad that I’m not surprised? The US has had several similar competitions, the most grotesque of which (that I know of) was “Pimp My Ride”.

siberian fall said: Apparently a lot of the general public think this is ‘just a bit of fun.’

What next, will the public say that a contest advertised to men to let them win the prize of circumcising their girlfriend is ‘just a bit of fun’ too? Or, if my analogy is too extreme, then just replace “circumcising” with labiaplasty, or hymen repair, or something along those lines. Because, really, these kinds of contests aren’t too far off from what I describe.

5. Siberian Fall - October 27, 2005

Sorry Winter, I didn’t realise you had written about it already! This was the first I had heard of it. So this has been going on for a while then? The radio made it sound like something new! How are they still getting away with this?

6. Winter - October 27, 2005

Oh gosh! I wasn’t trying to put you down at all, I just thought I’d link the two posts. Yours is a lot more developed anyway. Yes, this has been going on for a while and Object have been on the job.

7. TP - October 27, 2005

It’s just a shame that the ‘trouble’ Zoo are in amounts to one warning. No fine, not instruction to publish an apology, nothing.

Yeah, it’s good the ASA exist, but surely they’d be a more effective moderator of content if they could ‘punish’ when things cross the line.

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