*Update: The ads have been removed thanks to your rapid action. Scroll to bottom for details*
This week a teacher forwarded us a sponsored post by H&M where pre-teen girls were styled and posed in school fashion outfits and the headline ‘Make those heads turn in H&M’s Back to School fashion.'
After decades of working against the sexualisation of girls we were immediately concerned and took to social media to call them out.
Our Movement Director, Melinda Tankard Reist, first posted on X (formally twitter) and the response was overwhelming.
"The little girls parents generally prefer heads don’t ‘turn’ when others see their daughters walking to school, on a bus or in class. Why would you want to fuel the idea that little girls should draw attention to their looks, bodies and ‘style’? Perhaps have a word to your marketing team and come up with something that doesn’t draw attention to pre pubescent girls already struggling to thrive in a culture that values ‘lookism’ as an aspirational goal?" Tankard Reist said on Twitter.
People all around the world began to call H&M out for their harmful and irresponsible ad.Read more
Collective Shout has been campaigning against pornography since our inception and things have really heated up as we advocate for age verification technology to be implemented on porn sites. Last week our Youth advocate Daniel Principe was interviewed about his engagement with boys.
“There are huge harms associated with pornography. The research suggests that boys who consume a lot of pornography are more likely to be sexually violent, so there are broad ramifications for the entire community.”
“I’m in Broome right now and 80 per cent of the Year 7 boys I just spoke to have had sexual content drop into their Snapchat, TikTok, Instagram and Discord feeds,” Mr Principe said.
“In a session I did this morning with Year 5 and 6 boys, 50 to 60 per cent said they are encountering pornography online.”
“The best sex and respectful relationship and consent education programs can’t compete,” he said. “Trying to undo the damaging indoctrination of pornography is very challenging.”
“Every single day I’m hearing stories from young people themselves about the kind of shocking content they’re being exposed to.
“It’s a modest ask to at least trial an age verification system pilot that can be taken on an iterative process to keep children safe.”
‘Porn profits before protection’
Child safety advocates slammed the government’s decision to ignore the eSafety Commissioner’s age verification plan.
The group Collective Shout said pornography profits had been prioritised over the protection of children.
“The government has caved to the vested interests of the porn industry,” Collective Shout director Melinda Tankard Reist said.
“Even while acknowledging porn as a driver of violence against women, as reflected in its National Plan to Address Violence Against Women and Children, the government has allowed itself to be swayed by industry resistance to an age-verification system.
“If France, Germany, UK, Louisiana and Utah can roll out age verification systems, why can’t we? Vested interests should not be put before the wellbeing of children.”
Read the full article on news.com
"We don't understand why the Federal Government has put the vested interests of a global, predatory porn industry before the wellbeing and safety of children"
Our Movement Director, Melinda Tankard Reist, also appeared on Sky News to discuss our campaign for age verification for porn sites and the failures of advertising self regulation.
Industry at odds with efforts to end men's violence against women
Campaigns Manager Caitlin Roper was asked to comment on the survival of the "skimpies industry" in a post #METOO era during which women have increasingly testified to and called for an end to sexual objectification and harassment.
The inherently misogynistic skimpies industry is built on the practise of dressing female bar attendants and wait staff in bikinis and lingerie to serve as sexual entertainment for male customers.Read more
Controversy has arisen in Northbridge due to a mural featuring a sexualised, anime-inspired character that is being criticised for the way it presents women. Collective Shout Youth Advocate and Educator Daniel Principe spoke with Oly Peterson on 6PR’s Perth Live.Read more
Petition to pull Australia's 'most complained about' adRead more
Collective Shout Campaigns Manager Caitlin Roper quoted in Daily TelegraphRead more
MTR delivers a virtual presentation at the Commission on the Status of Women in New YorkRead more
A “kink and BDSM-inspired” mural in the Sydney CBD of a “furry” leather-bondage man with a teddy bear head has been slammed for being “inappropriate” and “creepy” in a public space.
The painting, created on a Wynyard street wall by “YCK Laneways”, a consortium promoting local shops in nearby streets, is part of the WorldPride festival, but has been likened to the recent Balenciaga fashion house scandal linking adult sex themes to children.
Online reaction to the image, depicting an overweight man with bondage straps laying on a rainbow flag on a couch with a bear and the logo “YC Gay” was scathing, with some calling for it to be removed.
Grassroots campaigners Collective Shout spokeswoman Caitlin Roper said children should not be exposed to sexual fetishes, but that the mural would attract their attention because of the use of “appealing” teddy bear images.
“The widespread condemnation of Balenciaga for their BDSM-themed ads involving children demonstrates that many people strongly object to involving or exposing kids to this kind of content,” Ms Roper said.
“Kink and BDSM-themed imagery is not appropriate for the public space which includes children.
“The global research is clear – sexualising children by exposing them to adult, sexualised or pornographic imagery harms their physical and mental health, beliefs, attitudes and sexuality in a range of ways.”
“There are other ways to promote diversity and inclusivity that don’t involve adults imposing their sexual fetishes on an audience that includes children.”
UPDATE: Caitlin Roper quoted in Daily Tele piece on Oz Kink Fest
Caitlin Roper from grassroots Australian organisation Collective Shout, who campaign against the infiltration of pornography and harmful objectification into the mainstream, sees deep problems with the message that sexualised abuse is sexy and women should enjoy it.
“We're seeing the legitimisation of male violence against women under the guise of ‘kink’ and BDSM,” she says.
“I think it is being fuelled by the mainstreaming of violent porn… all of which paint degradation and sexualised violence against women as 'hot' and something women should want.”
She says LGB was previously about same sex attraction but has grown to the point where sexual preferences and fetishes have been added to that.
From 'Being a little kinky has gone a bit too far', Clarissa Bye, 2 March - only in the print newspaper