Playboy babes.


I was rather surprised by this little news item that popped up on tea-time telly yesterday regarding the stationer W.H.Smith. Apparently they have discontinued their ‘Playboy’ line of school stationery that was being purchased, amongst others, by primary school girls.

What I don’t understand is how the decision was made to launch this line in the first place. Was it National Straw-for-Brains Week? Imagine the electric brainstorming session at W.H.Smith Product Development and Marketing!

Alex: “Fire away all the words you associate with school, my homies”
Max: “Lunch”
Daryl: “Exams”
Trix: “Playground”
“Science projects”
Alex: “Whoa, back it up, back it up. Playboy, you say”
“That’s catchy!”
“We have a winner”
“Everyone knows Playboy”

And apparently there has been pressure on W.H.Smith by parent and consumer groups for years before they retracted the line. What’s to argue? Couldn’t they just apologise, hold their hands up and admit it was daft. This is of course part of a larger debate about sexualising youngsters, and reminds me of a stand-up comedian on telly doing a routine about what slogans can be seen written on kids t-shirts / etc. nowadays.

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1 Comment

  1. A lot of debate about sexualising youngsters. I wonder though, who actually bought these things. It’s one thing selling them and another buying them for your own child.

    Naz responds: Exactly! Stationery might be bought independently and go unnoticed, but clearly it’s the parents who have bought a t-shirt with ‘Flirt!’ and ‘Sexy’ etc for their 6-year old.


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