Page 3 and the Tories: showing their modern, enlightened face

page 3 news in briefsPoliticsHome’s Paul Waugh reports the Tory distress at the axing of one of their favourite parts of The Sun:

the long-running News In Briefs section of Page 3 of the Sun (it’s been going since 2003) is, I can report, no more.

The section was missing from today’s paper, now under a new editor, and I understand there are no plans to resurrect it.

Several Tory MPs are already in mourning. The party’s popular ‘Breakfast Club’ of MPs (which numbers ministers as well as backbenchers) has a tradition whereby the newest member of the club has to read out the News in Briefs every day. The newbie has to read out the entry in the voice of the Page 3 girl in question.

One MP texted today three shocked letters on hearing of the culling of their favourite bit of the paper: “OMG”.

Yes, you tread that right: an MP ‘has to read out the entry in the voice of the Page 3 girl in question’. Those modern, enlightened Tories, eh?

* Stephen Tall is Co-Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice, and editor of the 2013 publication, The Coalition and Beyond: Liberal Reforms for the Decade Ahead. He is also a Research Associate for the liberal think-tank CentreForum and writes at his own site, The Collected Stephen Tall.

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14 Comments

  • Get a sense of humour.

    Also, not very ‘liberal’ to try to ban Page 3 it is it? It’s not like you middle class guardian-reading, lentil-munching weirdos read the sun anyway. Too late now.

  • What a dull world you wish to create.

  • Another depressing “we stand for nothing, ha, ha, ha” facepalm.

  • Geoffrey Payne 26th Jun '13 - 1:22pm

    You would have thought that the failure of the US Repubican party to win the woman’s vote should be a lesson for all right wing political parties.

  • Stuart Mitchell 26th Jun '13 - 5:53pm

    At least the Tories don’t want to condemn Page 3 girls to the dole queue – which is what some Lib Dems want to do.

  • Maria Pretzler 26th Jun '13 - 7:56pm

    What’s this got to do with banning page 3?

    If it’s true that page 3 is gone, it hasn’t been banned – the Sun editor has merely decided to get rid of it, and without big fanfares, by the looks of it, on a day when it would cause very little comment.

    I wonder whether some people who have commented in this thread so far do protest just a little bit too much?

  • Maria Pretzler 26th Jun '13 - 8:18pm

    But quite possibly he hasn’t decided to get rid of it anyway.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2013/jun/26/sun-page-3-topless-women-david-dinsmore

    Happy now?

    I am sadly getting used to seeing that women’s dignity is not a high priority when a bunch of LibDems starts arguing about this kind of issue.

  • David Wilkinson 26th Jun '13 - 8:33pm

    The trouble is the comments of the page 3 girl make a lot more sense than any Tory MP

  • I read it to mean that Page 3 Girls are still with us; only the “news in Briefs” vox-pop is gone.

  • Stuart Mitchell 27th Jun '13 - 7:09am

    @Maria
    “What’s this got to do with banning page 3?”

    I was just contrasting Stephen’s faux outrage at the way the Tories patronise these women, with the fact that he’d like them to lose their jobs.

    I’d rather have the mickey taken out of me than lose my job any day, so who’s showing insufficient respect here?

  • Is the Breakfast Club men only? Is Theresa (of “nasty party” fame) one of the Ministers? We should be told.

  • @Maria – it’s true that your liberty is worth more than your dignity. You should be free to make your own choices as regards your dignity, but your liberty is inalienable, because without it you no long have the ability to choose how to handle such things as your dignity. If people want to get naked and photographed for a newspaper, that’s up to them; if people want to buy that paper they should be free to do so. Why do you want to remove this liberty from them? Also, you’ve made it clear that you think Page 3 girls have lost dignity by their appearance, can you explain further how these women have diminished in your eyes? I find it very strange that you think they have less dignity because they’ve had a photo taken, and it seems to me that it’s very telling about how you perceive yourself that you’re making such proclamations about your view of others.

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