Photo: Eddie Jim
13 yr old surfer Olive Bowers is standing up for girls everywhere. She didn't like the images of women she saw - non surfing, bikini clad models, not the inspirational surfer girls out there she looks up to - when she looked at TRACKS SURF MAGAZINE, so she did something about it. She wrote the magazine a letter and created a wave of support, which will hopefully lead to change.
If a 13 yr old girl can stand up for herself & other girls, can you imagine what it would be like out there if all of us stood side by side when other women were portrayed in a negative or unflattering way? Something to definitely think about...
Read what Olive had to say below.
Dear Tracks Surf Magazine,
I want to bluntly address the way you represent women in your magazine. I am a surfer, my dad surfs and my brother has just started surfing.
Reading a Tracks magazine I found at my friend’s holiday house, the only photo of a woman I could find was ‘’Girl of the month’’. She wasn’t surfing or even remotely near a beach. Since then I have seen some footage of Stephanie Gilmore surfing on your website, but that’s barely a start.
I clicked on your web page titled ‘’Girls’’ hoping I might find some women surfers and what they were up to, but it entered into pages and pages of semi-naked, non-surfing girls.
These images create a culture in which boys, men and even girls reading your magazine will think that all girls are valued for is their appearance.
My posse of female surfers and I are going to spread the word and refuse to purchase or promote Tracks magazine. It’s a shame that you can’t see the benefits of an inclusive surf culture that in fact, would add a whole lot of numbers to your subscription list.
I urge you to give much more coverage to the exciting women surfers out there, not just scantily clad women (who may be great on the waves, but we’ll never know).
I would subscribe to your magazine if only I felt that women were valued as athletes instead of dolls. This change would only bring good.
LOVE what you are doing Olive - keep up the good work!
P.S. If you are wondering "why" I didn't post a hyperlink to Tracks Surf Magazine, the reason is I have NO desire to send any internet traffic their way - our support is for Olive, not to drive up their hits on their website.