Topless women on Page 3 of The Sun finally being scrapped?

Topless women on Page 3 of The Sun finally being scrapped?

Are the pictures of topless women on Page 3 of UK tabloid The Sun finally being scrapped?

If tweets by owner and publishing magnate Rupert Murdoch are anything to go by, those pictures may well give way to "normal pictures".

Mr Murdoch, the News Corp boss, has hinted he may bring in some "fashionable clothes" to cover up his traditionally topless Page 3 girls in his newspaper, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

In the face of a sustained campaign by British activists, the media baron has asked Twitter followers whether women look better with clothes on, instead of bare-breasted.

Yesterday, Mr Murdoch tweeted: "Brit feminists bang on forever about Page 3. I bet never buy paper. I think old fashioned but readers seem to disagree.

"Aren't beautiful young women more attractive in at least some fashionable clothes? Your opinion please."

His question drew a quick response from the Twitter-led "No More Page 3" campaign, which has gathered more than 200,000 supporters and regularly posts complaints from people embarrassed by what they see as a sexist throwback to another age.

Meanwhile, The Guardian reported that The Sun, which has an average daily circulation of over two million, has not run its usual topless picture since Thursday.

It hasn't given up publishing pictures of scantily-clad women. But the long-run routine of publishing a model smiling vacantly at the camera with her breasts on show has been disrupted.

Friday's page was devoted to shot of a naked Kim Kardashian with her nipple concealed. The Saturday and Sunday issues, as has long been the case, featured non-topless pictures.

On Wednesday, across pages 2 and 3, were a set of tastefully clothed pictures of a former Coronation Street star, Michelle Keegan, on a modelling shoot in Majorca.

LAST CENTURY

It is not the first time that Mr Murdoch has agonised over the issue - last year he responded to a tweet which said: "Seriously, we are all so over page 3 - it is so last century!"

Mr Murdoch replied: "You maybe right, don't know but considering. Perhaps halfway house with glamorous fashionistas."

In the No More Page 3 petition, an open letter to Sun editor David Dinsmore, the activists wrote that the naked breasts of young women were inappropriate for a widely-read "family" newspaper.

But last year, Mr Dinsmore told the BBC he would keep the page 3 girls because it was what his readers wanted.

He said then: "I was flicking through a copy of this month's Vogue and there was a picture of Kate Moss topless. I suspect the editor of Vogue won't be questioned on whether topless pictures should be around on its pages."

This article was published on Sept 11 in The New Paper.

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