Tesco agrees 'modesty deal' with lads mags

Published 03 August 2013  |  
PA
High street retailers are being warned they risk legal action if they do not remove magazines that display sexual images on their front covers

Tesco and three lads' mags have reached an agreement on changes to sexually explicit front covers.

The BBC reports that Zoo, Nuts and Front have agreed to make their covers "more modest" in future.

The publisher of Bizarre magazine meanwhile has agreed to sell the magazine in a bag.

The magazines typically show highly sexual images of scantily clad women.

It comes after protests by campaign group Lose the Lads' Mags outside the Tesco AGM in June.

The group said it was "unacceptable that the UK's biggest retailer sells sexist, pornographic lads' mags".

It has welcomed earlier moves by the Co-op to require publishers to put lads' mags in sealed 'modesty bags' or else have them withdrawn from sale.

The group said it showed people's voices were being heard but added that the supermarket chain was still "attempting to sell their customers short" by selling the magazines at all.

"The so-called 'modesty bags' they are demanding from publishers are designed to allow the Co-operative to continue profiting from sexist, harmful lads' mags – but just a bit more discretely. That's not what corporate social responsibility looks like."

It added: "If a product is so degrading to women that it has to be covered up then the Co-operative should not be selling it.  Lads' mags promote harmful behaviours and attitudes underpinning violence against women and girls."

Tesco reached the agreement with the magazines after seeking the views of customers.

"We have had in depth conversations with our customers about this issue and we're putting new measures in place based on what they have told us they want," said a spokesperson for the supermarket.

"We've listened carefully to the concerns raised by the campaign groups but our priority is to make sure we meet our customers's needs and expectations.

"To do that we have secured agreement from the publishers of Zoo, Nuts and Front that their magazine covers will be more modest from now on."

The magazines will still be sold in the retailer's 3,000 UK stores but they will be placed on the back tier of the magazine shelves so that the covers are obscured, the BBC reports.

The supermarket chain is also imposing a ban on the sale of the magazines to under-18s "to reassure parents who do not want their children to be able to purchase these titles".

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