This week, there was cause for celebration among No More Page 3 campaigners – and, y’know, any other human beings who want to live in a society where the national newspapers use their pages for writing the news rather than fundamentally undermining the battle for the equality of the sexes – as it appeared Page 3 had been scrapped.
The tabloid’s sister paper, the Times, ran a report about the paper quietly dropping the feature – a story that many confirmed with the fact that the Sun had not printed pictures of topless women in its Monday and Tuesday editions this week.
However, in the media equivalent of a “drunken letchy uncle at a wedding who doesn’t get the message”, as put wonderfully by the MP Stella Creasy, the Sun has today run a joke “apology” and printed a picture of a topless woman on Page 3. She appears under the header “Clarifications and Corrections”. The front page boasts that the paper has had “a mammary lapse”. There are likely to be angry faces in the Murdoch press pen today, as it’s clear the Sun has screwed over its neighbouring broadsheet, the Times, in its stunt to debunk the news story.
Here is the paper’s “apology”:
Were reports of Page 3’s demise exaggerated? Sun tweets image of topless woman in tomorrow’s paper with caption: pic.twitter.com/y9eb9ZsfFU
— New Statesman (@NewStatesman) January 21, 2015
One of the classiest elements of this reverse ferret is the Sun’s PR man, Dylan Sharpe, mocking journalists and politicians online with a picture of today’s Page 3 subject:
— Dylan Sharpe (@dylsharpe) January 22, 2015
It doesn’t really scream the Sun’s message that Page 3 is a “celebration of women”, when one wearing no clothes is being used online as ammunition for putting other women in their place.