Thursday, April 3, 2014

The Turning Tide...?

Today I received and saved another media story on the topic of naturism.

Each year at their AGM, the NZNF presents a number of Press Prizes and one of the awards is for Best Article selected from non-naturist media, so for this purpose I ensure a copy of all media stories on naturism are kept on file.

This year the file is growing at an astonishing rate, but not for the reasons that you might think. 

So far, nine non-naturist media stories have been added and they are all, on the whole, positive. One has a very disappointing headline - which has been addressed with the newspaper involved - but all the journalists have displayed a good understanding in the content of the article of genuine naturists and the naturist lifestyle.

Two journalists have even written of their own recent experiences at a club or naturist park and one of those stories has so far made it into two major newspapers around the country - in the Escape section of one newspaper and in the "LIFE" lift-out magazine in the other! 

They say the best form of advertising is word of mouth. No price can pay for the sort of exposure stories like this can get us. And, without prompting, they recognised the place for such an article is in lifestyle sections like "escape" and "life". This goes right along with some of the philosophies we try to explain that naturism is about and we couldn't have put it better! 

In years gone past, a lot of the articles have been around tensions at recognised clothing optional beaches where recently arrived residents have been up in arms about the nude beach-goers. And last year there were very few media stories at all.

So what can we read into the spate of more positive, almost inquisitively themed, stories?

It might be too soon to say, but I would love to think that there is a turn in society towards tolerance of all people and all lifestyles. That even though naturism is not necessarily something everyone wants to take part in, that those who do are not shunned or thought of as weird or even perverts. 

Regardless of how long this current "love affair" with the media continues, the NZNF intends to make the most of their seeming understanding and acceptance towards naturism. 

We will continue to call them on misleading headlines and incorrect content, but we will also acknowledge and thank them when they get it right and regard the subject with objective intelligence and thoughtfulness.

So, what do you think? Are we seeing the start of a turning tide...?