That was short-lived: after a few days of free publicity, the British paper The Sun has denied that they're removing topless women from their notorious section Page 3. (NSFW images follow.)
After a story in the Guardian came out Monday alleging that Page 3, which has long been known for featuring topless women, would (after years of protest) now only feature women in their underwear, The Sun did not comment. But on Wednesday evening, as the New York Times notes, both their official Twitter feed and the Twitter feed of a spokesperson for the company, Dylan Sharpe, were full of rebuttals, making this whole snafu seem like it was an attempt by The Sun to get itself a little attention.
After Monday's issue had a photo of Rosie Huntington-Whiteley in lingerie, without her breasts exposed, Tuesday and Wednesday's issues of the paper included topless young women. But Thursday's issue went hard: it features a photo of a young woman winking at the camera with no shirt on. The headline reads CLARIFICATIONS AND CORRECTIONS. The text below her reads:
FURTHER to recent reports in all other media outlets, we would like to clarify that this is Page 3 and this is a picture of Nicole, 22, from Bournemouth.
We would like to apologize on behalf of the print and broadcast journalists who have spent the last two days talking and writing about us.
The front page also featured a headshot of Nicole with the words "WE'VE HAD A MAMMARY LAPSE: SEE PAGE 3."
On Wednesday evening, Sharpe tweeted of the rumors the nudity was gone, "I said that it was speculation and not to trust reports by people unconnected to The Sun. A lot of people are about to look very silly...." He also retweeted a comment by BuzzFeed UK reporter Jim Waterston that read, "Let's call it Twitter rebuttal fatigue. We're so used to stories getting killed within mins, we assume 100% that no comment = true."
Or maybe if someone asks you for comment and a story is patently false you deny it? Just a thought. In any case, the attention, however it started, seems to have given new life to the campaign against the section, No More Page 3, which claims to have gotten thousands of new signatures to their Change.org petition about the issue.