No More Panties Please: A Letter to Deseret Morning News

I just sent this letter to the editor. We’ll wait and see if they publish it.

I would not expect Deseret Morning News, owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, to display sexually offensive advertising images on its online articles. I recently saw an ad for “Macy’s Free Ultimates Panty” (whatever that is) showing a seductive model wearing extremely tight, thin, and revealing undershirt and panties. The ad is in full color, large, and unavoidable, in the very center of the text. The paper must be aware that this kind of advertising is distasteful and offensive to the majority of its predominantly Latter-day Saint readership. I realize there are probably pressures for printing such ads, but perhaps the paper should follow the advice given last weekend by W. Craig Zwick in the LDS General Conference: “Live by your standards and stand up for what you believe in. Sometimes it is not easy, and you may be standing alone for awhile.” Shouldn’t Deseret News take a lead in making a stand against sexually offensive advertising? What message does this kind of advertising from a Church-owned newspaper send to the world? And what message does it send to Latter-day Saints about taking a stand against destructive yet popular worldly trends?

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6 Responses

  1. Candice,

    What did you find offensive about the ad? How would you recommend that Macy’s make people aware that their panties are on sale? Is there a place for alluring attire? Is there a place for advertising it? I’m wondering if we can move from “No more panties please” to “Panties in the right place.” I’d hate for Deseret News to get the wrong idea and remove the panties from those photos–they’re the only thing covering those ladies.

  2. Friggin,

    Good points.

    Let me just say, as one who saw the ad, that we are not talking about your typical “tasteful” underwear ad here (like you’d see in a Walmart catalog or something). I can’t guarantee that it’s still there, but it has been consistently portrayed on a page with a letter to the editor that I wrote last week (that’s how Candice and I know about it): http://www.deseretmorningnews.com/article/1,5143,695267161,00.html

    (I encourage you to look at the letter to the editor I wrote, at any rate.)

    We can certainly disagree, but I think it’s pretty clear that there is more than a product that is being sold here. I would expect this in other newspapers, but not in the Church-owned Deseret Morning News.

    But I think you are right — the biggest matter is the placement of the ad. In the case of this letter, you can read the whole text without having to look at the ad, but it’s pretty unavoidable to see it, especially if you want to look down at the comments. In the case of longer articles, you have to read around the ad to read your article. This is different than this type of ad, in black and white, being somewhat small and placed at the bottom of a newspaper somewhere. And it’s certainly different than it being placed — even large and in full color — within an inserted Macy’s advertising booklet. This last option I am fully OK with — if I didn’t know already, I would learn quickly that that type of image is included in the booklet. So it’s easy to avoid.

    But online advertising is a whole new ballgame, and I think the Deseret News must feel like they have to sell these kinds of online ads. I suppose this is what is meant, by me anyway, with the term “no more panties.” I don’t want to see this type of ad ONLINE — ever — in the Deseret Morning News.

  3. Dennis,
    I couldn’t agree more. Thank YOU for standing up. I will also write them. How disgusting.

  4. Perhaps the title is a bit ridiculous and misleading– it is meant to be humorous and to catch attention more than to say that underwear advertising of any kind is reprehensible.

    On a different note, I have met LDS people who find lingerie morally questionable. For example, you might question what it communicates when young LDS women and relatives shower new brides with underwear for her wedding night. A lot of these gifts are meant to tease and make the party laugh at her embarrassment. Not to say this is necessarily all bad, but lingerie is another issue entirely in our culture.

  5. […] Posts Deseret Morning News: Removes Words, Not PantiesNo More Panties Please: A Letter to Deseret Morning NewsHighlights from General Conference, April 2008Welcome to the new Thinking in a Marrow Bone […]

  6. I’d hate for Deseret News to get the wrong idea and remove the panties from those photos–they’re the only thing covering those ladies.

    Har!

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