Seventeen Magazine Pledges Less Photoshop, More Real

After years of public grumbling that magazines marketed toward teenage girls present depressingly perfect images for its readers to compare themselves to, Julia Bluhm, a 14-year-old from Maine, started a petition that caused Seventeen to increase transparency in its selection and touching-up of photos it uses. According to Ann Shoket, Editor-in-Chief of Seventeen, the staff signed an eight-point pledge that “the magazine will “never change girls’ body or face shapes”; will only include images of “real girls and models who are healthy”; and will post its photo shoots on the magazine’s Tumblr blog so girls can follow the entire photo shoot,” according to the Times. Bluhm, a blogger for Spark, started the online petition on April 19 via change.org after hearing friends in her ballet class say they were fat. The petition gained 84,000 signatures and Bluhm was invited to the Seventeen offices by Shoket in late April. In addition to the pledged transparency, Seventeen posted a “Body Peace Treaty” with points to maintain positive self image, such as “Stop joining in when my friends compare and trash their own bodies.” As of this post, the pledge had 86,969 signatures.

(Photo: SophiSchieli/Flickr)