Encourage positive body image by demanding mandatory labelling on photoshopped imagery
This petition had 7,455 supporters
‘You are fat, you are ugly, you are disgusting' – that’s what I used to say to myself when I looked in the mirror. I loathed my body, I hated my body.
As the founder of Body Image Movement and director and writer of Embrace, I have asked thousands of women to describe their body in one word… and I continue to be shocked by their responses.
The overwhelming majority of the women I speak to are unhappy with their bodies. But why? Because every day we are bombarded with images and advertising that present an unattainable ideal of what our bodies should look like.
The problem is that excessive digital manipulation of images of women in the media has lead to a generation of women and girls that feel pressured to conform to one ideal body.
A growing number of health and medical professionals are concerned that digitally altered images in the media can contribute to unrealistic body image expectations, which can ultimately lead to eating disorders and other serious mental health issues.
But change is happening around the world. Under laws in France and Israel, digitally manipulated images are legally obliged to contain a warning which states that they were edited. This may encourage the people who view the images to consciously take note that what they see isn't reality.
This is a hugely important issue in Australia, where 91% of women hate their bodies, around 10% of young women suffer from eating disorders and more than 50% of 5-12 year olds want to lose weight.
I’m urging you to call on the Government to pass new legislation so that all commercial images must carry a warning if the models who appear in them are digitally altered (for example reducing body size, removal of wrinkles, skin smoothening and skin lightening). The warning must take up a minimum of 7% of the image.
This legislation would be an important step to reduce the negative effects on self-esteem and body image that may be caused by promoting images of unrealistic and unattainable bodies. Such negative effects on self-esteem and body image can develop into a range of mental health issues, including eating disorders.
Let’s lead the way like France and Israel, and pass this legislation in Australia by creating a visual landscape that represents a realistic and diverse range of body types.
Thanks for your support!
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