One of the most important, integral and pressing issues for women’s rights within modern Britain is the continuing inclusion of page 3 within tabloid newspaper The Sun. Whilst some sections of the general public believe the daily feature can be interpreted as empowering and perhaps even liberating the ‘No More Page 3’ campaign spearheaded by Lucy Holmes continues to gain momentum since its formation in 2012, with a 26,000 strong following on twitter alone.
Although Amanda Palmer, singer-songwriter, had proclaimed “it’s just a naked woman” in late 2013, the campaign itself has been reinforced openly by various high profile celebrities including Russell Brand and actress Gemma Chan, as well as gaining wider political backing from over 140 MP’s. More recently The Sun had tried to add an informative element to the feature by adopting a health conscious stance in support of breast cancer awareness, but according to Holmes and other large breast cancer awareness organisations this supposed support trivialised the disease and became somewhat insensitive in its portrayal of the issue. For Holmes, page 3 had been on her mind long before the arrival of her organisation, as gradual awareness throughout her youth and into adulthood had allowed her to build the ideological beliefs she holds so vehemently today: "I grew up taking it for granted that women were presented naked for men in a newspaper. We are presenting one gender naked and passive for the other one – it's a real imbalance".
When interviewed on the subject of ‘International Women’s Day’, Holmes opened up to Pop-Up Newsroom reporter Carla Fitoiu and expressed the importance of the event as a statement of intent to progress towards a society with equal gender opportunity: "IWD is a real case of saying let's reinvent a world for men and women and highlight the issues around it”. Holmes herself had been spurred into action after the 2012 Olympics and the depiction of Jessica Ennis’ gold medal success within The Sun- on the day Ennis had brought gold home to Britain the biggest picture of a woman in the paper was still half-naked. She described this day as the turning point as it felt like “being slapped in the face- being told it was a man’s world”.
From a simple internet petition ‘No More Page 3’ has grown into one of the most recognizable and passionate organizations in support of ‘International Women’s Day’, and despite not achieving their overarching goal as yet, their central beliefs still hold real validity within the modern landscape of gender equality. If you too want to show your support like so many others, t-shirts with the organizations infamous slogan can be purchased online from http://nomorepage3.org/.
*With additional audio reporting by Carla FITOIU*