Family Group Supports Call To Pull Zoo Magazine

Media Release 14 Sep 2015
Family First NZ is supporting calls for Countdown stores in New Zealand to stop selling ZOO Weekly, and says that all retailers in NZ should be encouraged to reject the publication.

“The magazine promotes a rape culture and objectifies women – all at the same time as we try to tackle the ‘roastbusters’ mentality and unacceptable rates of sexual violence in New Zealand,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.

“We agree with Australian campaigners that the magazine normalises the sexualisation and objectification of women, teaches boys to be predatory, encourages sexual harassment and violence, and is harmful to young people.”

“It is vital that families continue to speak up rather than accept the sexualisation of girls and women in the media, and it’s vital that the corporate world join this fight.”

“The public deserve to be protected from the injurious impact of material deemed objectionable and dangerous to families and young people,” says Mr McCoskrie.

A 2011 UK study compared lads’ mags’ – including Zoo – and statements from convicted rapists. It found many people could not distinguish the source of the quotes.

“Family First is calling on Countdown and then other retailers to show social responsibility and corporate ethics and no longer stock the magazine.”

Family First has previously succeeded in getting an objectionable Lady Gaga billboard removed from the back of buses, objected to a three-storey-high mural of a naked woman on the side of Christchurch’s central city strip club, laid a complaint with the police over a highly offensive t-shirt being displayed at a Canterbury Museum exhibition, was successful in getting a complaint upheld by the Advertising Standards Authority which banned the Internet Mana party’s ‘Join the Revolution’ advert on YouTube which includes a crowd chanting “f*** John Key”, and welcomed a decision by Whitcoulls to remove an offensive advertisement from the NZ AIDS Foundation.

Why are Coles and Woolworths promoting rape culture?

Why should our major supermarket chains supply this magazine which promotes the abuse of women like me?

Boys can find advice like this:

“You think your girl’s so dewy­eyed she’s never sucked dick before? She knows how it works…. Is your girlfriend a bunny rabbit? A fragile rice­paper arrangement? No? Then how about you let her know she’s being f**ked?… she’ll like you taking charge like a real man.”


‘If the object of your affection is drinking, that’s already a point in your favour… you want to pick the “loosest/skankiest” one of the lot and fetch her a drink…separate her from the flock. You’re off alone, boozed-up and charming — these are three green lights!’

Zoo Weekly recently came under fire, but not for publishing quotes like this one. It was recently forced to remove advertising for its ‘ANZAC commemorative edition‘ after the Department of Veteran Affairs threatened fines.

….Other disturbing content from Zoo Weekly includes:

Tips for using alcohol to coerce women into unwanted sex.
Encouraging readers to send in pictures of their girlfriends breasts for a chance to win breast augmentation surgery.
Their 2012 Hottest Asylum Seeker competition, encouraging female asylum seekers to send in sexy pics.
Photoshopping the head of Greens Senator Sarah Hansen-Young onto the body of one of their half naked models after she refused to pose in their magazine.
Sharing a photo on their Facebook page of a woman’s body cut into two pieces, asking fans which half they would prefer and why (the responses from men were sick).
Sharing sexualised images of girls who appear underage on their Facebook page lifted from teen porn websites.

Ads in Zoo promote explicit phone sex lines, some with images depicting ‘school girls home alone.’

And all of this is classified as ‘men’s lifestyle’ – there are no age restrictions on who can purchase Zoo.  Recent market data showed that 36,000 boys aged 14-17 are among its readership. The magazine openly states that “men” aged 16-40 are their core target.

….Coles and Woolworths, as our major supermarket chains you pride yourselves on being family stores with a strong commitment to community values. It’s time for you to stand up for the wellbeing of women and girls and against discrimination, harassment and violence. We need to take a stance and make it known that these issues are real and it’s only going to get worse if we as a society keep normalising it. Please stop profiting from selling Zoo and remove it from your stores immediately.


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