Hey everyone, it’s been a while since anyone posted on here, let alone since I myself posted (do I dare look up when my last post was? I do – it was last August. Well at least it hasn’t been a year yet!) I’ve been really busy and stressed, meaning I had no inspiration and energy to blog on here, but I am here today!
So a little background before I jump in: I’m a journalist student in The Netherlands, currently in my second year. Either next year or the year after that, I’ll have to start my first internship, so I was looking at the list of internships that were approved by my school.
Now, I didn’t know all of the ones on this list, or I looked them up anyway to see if my expectations were right. This is how I stumbled upon two Dutch magazines (who also post on their websites) JFK and Panorama. I always thought Panorama was a photography magazine, but boy was I wrong. Both magazines are aimed at men (that’s how they describe themselves).
When I googled JFK it seemed harmless, but Google did suggest one of their tabs: ‘women’. This already made me a bit nervous, but maybe these were articles aimed at women? Or so I hoped. Nope. It’s all about objectifying women and sex. Because that’s all we’re good for, am I right?
They have a recurring column, called JFBabe, in which they highlight a woman. As far as I scrolled, I could only see women dressed in either swimwear or lingerie in the featured images of these columns. In the introduction of their latest ‘JFBabe’ they explain that each Friday they share ‘one of the hottest chicks of Instagram’ to ‘get in the right mood’. What does that even mean??
The column goes on to say that she got her followers because of her beauty: ‘More than 150.000 people want to stay updated on her vacation- and bikini pictures. And with her perfect curves we can’t blame them, what a great way to start the weekend!‘ (the word they use is ‘heerlijk’ which could be translated as ‘great’ or ‘delicious’)
And they don’t just stick to sexism! In an article about ‘crazy things’ Katy Perry has done, they write: ‘Kissing girls isn’t the only crazy thing this babe has done’. Ummm?? Girls kissing girls isn’t ‘crazy’??
I do have to give them credit for writing an article about not looking up a leaked sex tape from a Dutch vlogger and explaining why it’s wrong. But there’s just a lot of objectificating – women are not portrayed as human beings on their website.
Then there’s Panorama. If you go to their regular site you won’t see this tab, but Google suggested ‘Sexy Reader’ to me. I clicked on that one and ended up at babes.panorama.nl. Can these magazines stop referring to women as ‘babes’??
Pretty much everything under the tab ‘women’ is about sex and porn. There’s also the delightful post ’10 facts about boobs you didn’t know yet’ – I’d like to quote my friend here: ‘fact 1: you don’t get to touch them when you’re a pig’ But a real fact they share is that the most common bra size is cup-B, but that the average bra size is only growing ‘something we’re only encouraging!’ Mate… Mate have I got news for you. I have cup-D and my tits are small af. Bra size is a little bit more complicated than that.
There’s also an article about an upcoming show in which Dutch celebrities will learn how to pole dance and compete with each other. First they name all the female participants and describe a Dutch singer as ‘the one with that nose’ which is just infuriating. Especially since they don’t describe any of the others, and I’m sure not everyone actually knows those celebrities as they’re not that famous. Why is this singer any different?
Then they go on: ‘who doesn’t want to see those ladies scarcely dressed climbing into a pole’? Hey guess what! Pole dancing is a sport, not just entertainment for straight (cis) men! But then, oh no, poor them: ‘Each advantage has it’s disadvantage. Did you think you could stare at half-naked women, wrapped around a pole for two hours? WRONG! (note: Jesus Christ did Donald Trump write this article??) When the candidates were announced, we were horrified to find out that men are participating as well!! And what kind of men! [some Dutch male celebrities are mentioned], we don’t need to see it.’ I don’t even know where to start. Hell, I don’t even know the middle or the ending. Like I said, pole dancing is a sport (and a really tough one at that!). This tv show isn’t a live strip club for straight (cis) men to enjoy. I’m sure the makers of this show and the female participants are terribly sorry that your expectations were crushed and that these women aren’t going to please you for two hours straight!!
On top of that, they also have an article on how disappointed they are that Apple is taking precautions so nudes won’t be leaked anymore: ‘It’s sad that we can’t expect anymore pictures. The sexy selfies that are going around the internet are already delicious/hot (note: the word used is ‘lekker’ which means nice, delicious. I also added hot so it makes more sense in English, but wanted to keep in the ‘delicious’ to convey how pervy and creepy it is), but we’re still missing a couple of ladies (MILA KUNIS!!). But I’m sure there will be a smart person who can avoid these precautions on iCloud.’ And then they ask their readers whose nudes they missed (no one responded). Do I need to explain this one? I am nauseous and disgusted. At least JFK told their readers not to search for leaked nudes and explained why you shouldn’t. Panorama though? I can’t believe this is published.
How are these two magazines considered journalism? Why did my school approve of these misogynist, disgusting pieces of media as internships? Just why in general?