13 Oct 2015

No more nudes in Playboy magazine

7:09 pm on 13 October 2015

Playboy magazine is to stop publishing images of naked women as part of its redesign.

Playboy founder Hugh Hefner

Playboy founder Hugh Hefner Photo: Getty Images

Its US owners say the internet has made nudity outdated, and pornographic magazines were no longer so commercially viable, the New York Times reports.

Playboy's circulation has dropped from 5.6 million in the 1970s to the current 800,000, official figures show.

However, the magazine will still feature women in provocative poses - though not fully nude.

The decision was apparently taken last month at a meeting attended by Playboy founder and current editor-in-chief Hugh Hefner.

Magazine executives admitted that Playboy - which was founded in 1953 - had been overtaken by the changes it pioneered, according to the New York Times.

"That battle has been fought and won," Playboy chief executive Scott Flanders is quoted as saying by the newspaper.

"You're now one click away from every sex act imaginable for free. And so it's just passe at this juncture."

Gone, too, are the days when interviews with figures of the stature of Martin Luther King Jr, Malcolm X and Jimmy Carter made Playboy so culturally and politically significant.

Playboy's website has already banished nudity, partly to give it access to social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. And its popularity has soared with web traffic quadrupling.

A brand long synonymous with salaciousness is cleaning up its act, and all with the blessing - apparently - of the 89-year-old Mr Heffner.