As part of a redesign to the magazine that will debut next March, Playboy will stop publishing photos of nude women. Its website stopped featuring nudity in August, and traffic has since increased from four million to 16 million users a month, according to Playboy executives.
The magazine has included naked photos of women since its debut in 1953, featuring Marilyn Monroe as the first centerfold. "If you're a man between the ages of 18 and 80, Playboy is meant for you," wrote founder Hugh Hefner in his first editor's letter.
The New York Times reports on the reason for the redesign:
Its executives admit that Playboy has been overtaken by the changes it pioneered. "That battle has been fought and won," said Scott Flanders, the company's chief executive. "You're now one click away from every sex act imaginable for free. And so it's just passé at this juncture."
Cory Jones, an editor at the magazine, says Playboy will still feature racy photos, including a "Playmate of the Month," but these images will be of a PG-13 variety.
Other content changes include expanded liquor coverage and more of the investigative journalism for which it was once known.
As The New York Times notes:
A judge once ruled that denying blind people a Braille version of [Playboy] violated their First Amendment rights. It published stories by Margaret Atwood and Haruki Murakami among others, and its interviews have included Malcolm X, Vladimir Nabokov, Martin Luther King Jr. and Jimmy Carter, who admitted that he had lusted in his heart for women other than his wife. Madonna, Sharon Stone and Naomi Campbell posed for the magazine at the peak of their fame. Its best-selling issue, in November of 1972, sold more than seven million copies.
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