So, FHM and Zoo magazine are shutting down.

I used to read FHM – by which I mean, I actually read FHM. Yes, there were the pictures of women in their underwear, but there were also good articles. But showing my age, this was the FHM from about 20 years ago; pre-internet, pre-Loaded (and very much pre-Zoo/Nuts). 1

An article in The Telegraph makes the case that women should be mourning the loss of these magazines - because however 'bad' those magazines were, the alternative to 'lads mags' like FHM and Zoo is whatever is on the other side of a Google search (see Rule 34).

I made a similar point in a blog post a couple of months ago ("Software is eating innocence") - although I was talking about 'real' pornographic magazines, rather than the tamer 'lads mags' kind of publication. But its kind of worrying that if there is some kind of spectrum with girls in bikinis at one end and hardcore pornography at one end, then you have the kind of algorithmically-driven pornographic content pushing things at the hardcore end ever further towards the hardcore, while market forces at the other end of the spectrum mean that the tamer 'lads mags' are disappearing, then the impact that its going to have on younger generations as they grow up is on an alarming trajectory.

  1. My dad used to borrow them, and always said he only read it for the jokes. I only ever half believed him.