February 14, 2017

"I’ll be the first to admit that the way in which the magazine portrayed nudity was dated, but removing it entirely was a mistake."

"Nudity was never the problem because nudity isn’t a problem. Today we’re taking our identity back and reclaiming who we are."

Said Cooper Hefner, dressing Playboy magazine's commercial decision in fine words. 

47 comments:

Tarrou said...

My god. The winning, there is so much of it. He really is making this country great again.

dustbunny said...

So Cooper replaced his sister Christie? Another family business.

Oso Negro said...

I bought my first Playboy magazine at the age of eight in Crank's Drugstore in Springfield, Missouri in 1965. My friends Ralph and Larry put me up to it and gave me the necessary 75 cents. I slapped it up on the counter and the clerk rang up the sale. There were two old ladies in line behind me and one remarked to the other, "why looky there! A little bitty boy buying Playboy!" Ralph's Dad caught us with it three days later. My old man thought it was funny. It wasn't national news, and no one (as far as I know) was scarred for life. Fifty-two years later, I still enjoy images of naked women.

rhhardin said...

I guess the article market isn't that big.

rhhardin said...

Though Jean Shepherd was always telling listeners about his latest article in Playboy in the 60s.

rhhardin said...

Wait a minute, the article says no pussy. Good luck with that.

Go for tasteful pussy, is my advice.

damikesc said...

Stunning to think that turning Playboy into Maxim was not a winning strategy.

Daniel Jackson said...

"Tasteful pussy"

What? Scratch and Sniff instead of Glossy?

exhelodrvr1 said...

Is there anything Trump can't do?

Otto said...

Doubling down on nihilism.

Ron said...

The infrastructure ....just getting better and better!

Ron said...

If naked women is "nilhilism", then Schopenhauer me up, baby!

Shawn Levasseur said...

I guess the history of Playboy kept it off many magazine racks in spite of it's dropping nudity; what retail store that blushed from carrying it before was going to risk the backlash from people who didn't get the message or still associate the brand with porn.

The move may have gotten it better placement in bookstores, but that's a declining market too. Ultimately, magazines are a declining market. Losing the nudity was merely shifting its position on a sinking ship.

I understood the thinking behind the original move away from nudity, but ultimately their brand was too strongly tied to it. Win or lose, they have to be true to the brand.

rhhardin said...

What? Scratch and Sniff instead of Glossy?

One of the mags had a scratch'n'sniff centerfold that was much hyped.

It turned out to be her favorite douche, not the fish everybody was expecting.

Bait and switch.

Tasteful would be a pudendal cleft, to use the tasteful term. Guys are wired for it. So wired that they don't even put it on sculptures.

Without it you're just trying to sell more boobs into a saturated market.

Bob Ellison said...

In other news, Titanic magazine is doing a montage on the beauty of icebergs.

traditionalguy said...

Dated nudity is still the best nudity.

Laslo Spatula said...

"Tasteful would be a pudendal cleft, to use the tasteful term. Guys are wired for it. So wired that they don't even put it on sculptures."

Painters won't paint it, either. They refuse to use a cleft palette.

I am Laslo.

Rumpletweezer said...

So "I only get it for the articles" was a big lie? I'm crushed.

Barry Dauphin said...

The covers are off on Althouse today. Everything being exposed.

roesch/voltaire said...

I never looked at the photos but only read it for the articles :)

Clyde said...

Playboy without nudity was like Hershey without chocolate. You can't sell an empty wrapper that faintly smells like the product.

Jake said...

I guess it's better to sell some magazines as opposed to no magazines.

LarsPorsena said...

They are so brave.

Laslo Spatula said...

Sketchy Guy Who Works at the Adult Bookstore says:

So I rad that Playboy is going to have nude models again: I’m sure that might excite three or four of my customers, but really, who cares about Playboy at this point? Their audience has moved on, either in age or in tastes. Tits and ass are so Sixties, and the pussy was the Seventies: that’s forty years ago, people…

It isn’t just the Internet, it is the Girls of Today on the Internet. Eighteen-year-old girls will show their shaved vaginas to anyone in selfies they take in a mirror with that pouty-lip look they all use. By the time you are seeing what they are showing it is already old news — hell, their tattoo artist already got a close-up view when they got that tattoo below their hip bone…

No, people have moved on. Simple nudity had excitement because it felt like a Glimpse into Privacy: when the girls exhibit no sense of Privacy the edge is gone, and it ain’t gonna come back…

Now, the only Privacy left is when a woman spreads her butt for the camera and shows her asshole: most chicks are still Shy about THAT, and guys know it. Even Playboy knows it, but they won’t go there, which means they will continue to sell to those three or four people in my shop, before they get bored or simply resign themselves to masturbating to the women in the Viagra commercials…

I am Laslo.

CStanley said...

In what way is he claiming that they will differentiate the nudity from the old "dated" nudity?

Are they going to feature Lena Dunham, because it's empowering for women to display bodies that are not attractive to most men?

Or will they feature a photo essay with a woman gradually disrobing and giving her affirmative consent before each article of clothing is removed?

JAORE said...

We were losing money at a slower pace when we had nudity.....

Jake said...

LASLO SAID:

"Now, the only Privacy left is when a woman spreads her butt for the camera and shows her asshole: most chicks are still Shy about THAT..."

So right. Even Lena Dunham won't do that.

CWJ said...

"Bait and switch."

My first guilty laugh of the day.

Well played rhhardin.

tcrosse said...

There was always a page for "What Kind of a Man Reads Playboy". The guy they showed was a ri.ch sophisticate, nothing at all like the people I knew who read Playboy. They never showed the college kid whacking off to The Girls of the Big Ten.

William said...

Magazines are an outdated way of delivering pictures of naked women. Even pictures of naked women are somewhat outdated. It's not the horse and buggy. It's a sedan chair method of conveyance......Shoes, tvs, electronic equipment, images of naked women--so many things have gotten better and cheaper in my lifetime.........I like Jenna Coleman. She played the perky ingenue on a couple of seasons of Dr. Who. She's now in some BBC biopic of Queen Victoria. I hesitate to see it. I suspect that they'll go all Downton Abbey on her. Lots of tasteful decorum and subplots involving the household staff. I don't think we'll ever be truly out of the Victorian Age until BBC offers a biopic of Victoria that includes a few topless scenes and some lesbo kissing.

tim in vermont said...

Hershey has chocolate in it? Who knew?

vicari valdez said...

i feel like i understand why they made the original decision to nix the nudity, but i think it wasn't enough of a rebranding (although it was a bold attention-getting gesture). their business model should be more, say, purple and less maxim. i honestly haven't looked at a playboy since the rebranding, but they were very much maxim with tits immediately before that. not a good look.

JPS said...

Just remembered this:

Back before it would have caused a real crisis, some grad students bought a brash young assistant professor a subscription to Playboy. He was upset the first time it showed up in his departmental mailbox, and angrily canceled it.

His very senior colleague commented, "I wish someone would buy me a prank subscription to Playboy. I'm too old for T&A, but they have some good articles."

To which a young woman graduate student responded indignantly, "You're never too old for T&A!"

I feel like all this would be...problematic...nowadays.

harryo said...

When I look at magazines at the dentist or doctors office, it's funny that all the advertisements are for pharmaceuticals. They all invite you to have your doctor prescribe this wonder drug. Especially ED (manopause) or menopause related issues.

Many years ago I was watching some sort of video about a Playboy centerfold shoot. The photographer is telling her how to turn this way and that, and finally when he has the pose he wants he says "now push out your tush" SNAP, there he got it.

It was like a revealed secret to Playboy photography. Don't forget the Tush Push.

Paul said...

but.. but.. but.. I was just reading the articles!!! Honest!

walter said...

I found Cooper Hefner's admission that the presentation of nudity had become "dated" interesting. I will be curious to see what he thinks is more contemporary.

walter said...

By the way, I thought Playboy was being run by one of Hef's daughters. Never heard of Cooper before.

harryo said...

walter said...By the way, I thought Playboy was being run by one of Hef's daughters. Never heard of Cooper before.

I think his daughter left many years ago now. I remember reading about her moving on.

harryo said...

walter said...I found Cooper Hefner's admission that the presentation of nudity had become "dated" interesting. I will be curious to see what he thinks is more contemporary.

The kids today won't look at any woman who doesn't have tattoo's. When women took over the tattoo craze from sailors, it became the new edgy body image.

I saw a picture of MJ's daughter, and she has tattoo's everywhere. Lucky for her to be a mulatto, so you can actually see them.

My daughter who's going to be 26 this year has the dainty wrist tattoos, and I suspect, places where I haven't wiped since puberty.

tcrosse said...

When I was in the Navy many years ago, we were discourgaged from getting tattoos. The clincher argument was that tats make you that much easier to pick out of a line-up.

harryo said...

I was at a Hot Rod reunion a few years ago in Bakersfield, and TV Tommy Ivo was there signing autographs. He was joking around that he would like to build a "rat rod" (trust me, he was joking) but he didn't want to have to get a tattoo!

It was so funny, I nearly pee'd.

It's sad to look at the car magazines now, because the kids building cars are building "edgy" junkpiles and wearing all sorts of 50's clothes. It's a sickness.

It makes me shiver, like when I go to the Tender Trap bar, and look at the dancers. Woof! Brrrr....

rightguy2 said...

Well said, Mr. Laslo- the last 60 years of pornography history in a few lively, accurate paragraphs. And its all you need to know (that is if you really need to know anything about porn).

Big Mike said...

I guess I can go back to reading it for the articles, then?

Bay Area Guy said...

@tcrosse,

"When I was in the Navy many years ago, we were discourgaged from getting tattoos. The clincher argument was that tats make you that much easier to pick out of a line-up."

My experience too. Serving in Yokosuka, Japan 32 years ago - Liberty in Tokyo - drunken mess with buddies - "hey guys, we're overseas, let's get some tattoos" - I begged off, recalled some regulation or something against it, didn't want to deal with Captain's Mast.

The Japanese liked Yanks back then - we strutted about Tokyo in our uniforms without problems.

Playboy mags? Invariably someone would pass them around on the ship. Chicks couldn't serve on ships back then.

Joe said...

Playboy had two problems: starting around the 90s, the models got markedly worse, especially with all the proverbial silicon. And while the magazine was always leftist, while pretending to be libertarian, it went fairly hard progressive soon after the turn of the century. Even many of their standby contributors had become far left old cranks who were now boring and boring is the worse.

Zach said...

I said in the no-nudity thread a year ago that I don't think the brand makes any sense without nudes.

Playboy tries to sell sophistication. Naked women + Henry Kissinger interviews do that. Clothed models just don't mean the same thing. If you wouldn't keep it away from the kids, what's the point?

Zach said...

Regardless, I don't think that print + pornography is a viable business model.

Forget about the nudes -- who buys magazines?