Sainsbury’s supermarket have been forced to defend placing a modesty cover over an issue of Attitude Magazine dedicated to tackling young people’s issue and homophobic bullying. The cover, which contains a fully clothed Daniel Radcliffe, was hidden from view on a high shelf in Sainsbury’s Dalston Junction, and spotted by freelance writer Scott Bryan.
Sainsbury’s defended the decision to So So Gay. A spokesman told us, “Following feedback from customers we introduced modesty covers several years ago across a wide variety of magazines. This is to ensure no offence is caused to customers who may object to the images or the content on the covers of some magazines. The titles that do have modesty covers do so for every edition so no particular cover is ever singled out.”
They later confirmed that the titles included were Gay Times, Attitude, Loaded, Zoo, Nuts and Bizarre. Magazines like FHM, Esquire, GQ, Stuff and Men’s Health were not covered by the policy.
Bryan was unimpressed by their response: “I think Sainsbury’s response doesn’t make any sense. If you compare Attitude to another magazine such as FHM you will see that they share very little in the way of sexual or top-shelf content. Attitude even removed the ‘escort ads’ at the back last year. I think the magazine is on exactly the same par as you would see with GQ or Esquire Mag, not Big Boobs Zoo or Nuts. Its just a shame as the issue with Daniel Radcliffe in has stories about homophobic abuse and advice on coming out for today’s youth. If you were unsure about your sexuality and needed some advice, would you really reach for the top shelf of a supermarket?”
Some twitter users expressed their disappointment with the decision:
So So Gay reader Holly Brockwell told us, ‘This is so disappointing. I’ve never seen an offensive ‘Attitude’ cover, but I’ve been plenty offended by FHM over the years. Do Sainsbury’s truly believe a man’s torso is outrageous? If so, they’d better start covering up every edition of ‘Men’s Health’, among others. I think the implication is that a man’s body is offensive when viewed through the lens of gay sexual desire. And that offends me more than any cover photo could.’