Words: Sophie Henderson
Feature Image: Charles Deluvio
Hypocritical tabloids are keen to call out against the blatant sexualisation of women. In 2011, the Daily Mail recorded a ‘Huge rise in intensely sexualised pictures of women… but not men.’ Unfortunately, that same year they were accused of sexualising children.
It’s not difficult to see that sex is deeply embedded in popular culture, which is acceptable to a certain degree, but following #MeToo’s harrowing cry against sexual harassment, women are increasingly aware of their objectified portrayal in the media.
The moral, feminine perspective has increased in momentum, and overt sexualisation (clearly targeted at men) is relatively frowned upon.
… apparently we just save it for Snapchat.
In 2017 Snapchat altered their design, introducing the Discover page to seperate personal stories from media-driven campaigns. Fast-forward a year and we’re amidst total anarchy.
Rules don’t apply because we’re online, away from any wandering eye. Sex is selling, and the tabloid demographic is thriving.
But that’s not to say outlets such as the Sun are the only perpetrators. Take a Harper’s Bazaar‘s headline from this week, currently live on Snapchat: ‘This Might Be The Most Scandalous Pic Emily Has Ever Posted.’ It shows Emily Ratajkowski in little to no clothing. Regardless of the contents of the article this is essentially a form of clickbait on the back of a successful porn industry. Sexualised imagery paired with ‘scandalous’ language is deemed to be okay, when it is definitely not.
With a female-led demographic, such headlines are necessitating gossip and pairing it with sexualisation of the female body. We’re selling a carefree, fearless image of the female, but using vocabulary such as this, so rooted in the tabloid press, we’re generating an even greater problem.
We should all feel free to celebrate our femininity in whatever way we may choose, but we cannot tolerate derogatory language in relation to our own bodies.
Overt headlines are quite literally shoved in our faces, and these exploitative tactics are being used to entice readership. The Snapchat generation will grow up, online, to see this as the norm.