Originally published: 17.06.15
Zoo Weekly has a long history of exploiting and objectifying women for the enjoyment of male readers. During this time, supermarket chains Coles and Woolworths have quietly profited from the sale of this unrestricted magazine in stores around the country. There are a lot of reasons why Coles and Woolworths should rethink the sale of Zoo Weekly, but we’ve narrowed it down to just 20, in no particular order.
1) Zoo invited readers to send in photos of their girlfriends’ breasts to ‘win a boob job‘
2) Zoo posted this image on their Facebook page and asked young fans which half they preferred- and why.
3) People can’t distinguish between the statements taken from lads mags like Zoo Weekly and statements from convicted rapists, according to a 2011 study.
4) Zoo gives young male readers tips on how to coerce women into sex, through isolation and using alcohol to compromise consent.
5) Zoo held a competition to find the ‘Hottest Asylum Seeker’, calling for refugee women who had fled from violence to strip off and send in their sexy pics.
6) Zoo sexed up Anzac day in their special commemorative edition featuring a model in a bikini describing her affection for “guys in uniform”.
9) Zoo brags about approaching young women in the street and convinces them to strip, uploading footage to their Youtube channel.
11) Zoo invites girls to send in pornographic videos and photos of themselves to be distributed on social media, despite research finding 88% of teen sexualised images posted to social media sites ends up on parasite porn sites.
12) Zoo encouraged young readers to do “cool things…like hit women”, joking about “backhanding the missus”.
13) Zoo exploited the homeless for a laugh.
14) Zoo photoshopped the head of Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young onto the body of one of their models when she declined to pose for them.
16) Zoo demeaned Australia’s first saint, Mary MacKillop, commemorated with a model in a habit and headline “Saint Mary Mac and Her Holy Rack” and presented on her knees ‘begging for it’.
17) Zoo magazine includes ads for hardcore pornography, adult sex toys and sexual services despite bragging about their significant readership of underage boys.
18) Zoo mag advises men and boys on how to relate to women sexually by ‘taking charge like a real man’.
19) Zoo shares images on Facebook that are also featured on ‘Jailbait’ porn sites, advertising ‘young, hot’ underage girls. Sometimes Facebook fans speculate on the age of the girls pictured but ogle them anyway.
20) By sexualizing and objectifying women, Zoo contributes to mental health problems in young women and girls such as eating disorders, low self esteem, poor body image, anxiety and depression.
All this and more, available now at your local Coles or Woolworths supermarkets.
Coles and Woolworths, it’s time to decide what you value most highly- women, or profiting from all of the above.
As published at Collective Shout
Melinda Tankard Reist: I write on sexualisation, objectification, pornification, violence against women, pornography and trafficking and women’s health issues. I am author/ed of four books, most recently Getting Real: Challenging the sexualisation of girls and Big Porn Inc: Exposing the harms of the global pornography industry (both Spinifex Press titles). I am co- founder of Collective Shout: for a world free of sexploitation. Facebook Twitter: @meltankardreist