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Girls being conscious of their body image is the medias fault

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/6/2014 Category: People
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,236 times Debate No: 45342
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (1)
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If you accept the challenge just write accept and our debate will begin there. I think that it IS the medias fault that young girls are so image conscious. Thank you!


I accept.
Debate Round No. 1


If the media were not portraying the ideal, beautiful body and splashing it in our faces girls would not worry so much. Think if the media stopped splashing this 'ideal body' in front of our faces then there would be no problem with how we look. If people were not encouraged to judge people on appearances then there would be no need to be image conscious. Just think 87.%% of Uk teenage girls are not happy about their bodies. Can you not think why? The Media.


To start my argument I would like to say that I think all girls should be conscious about their body. This works either way, self consciousness does not mean being unheatlhy.
A girl can be conscious about her body and still be healthy, while not being over the top or under it.
I do imagine you meant that girl are being over conscient about their body because of the media, which, in turn can cause different diseases.
I will take this as your debate question.

I would also love a source for the 87.5% unhappy girls you stated.

I mostly disagree on the fact that it is the Medias fault that the girls are being over concerned about their bodies.
I do not think the media is to blame since they are just the passing on the ads that the clothing industry gives them, they are in no way to blame for this, they just pass the message.
Of course you could say they are guilty for doing so, but this would be an incredible shortcut, they have to keep their prices democratic, not giving out those ads could result in a raise in price of the papers/magazines.

Another thing to consider is that the model used, underweight or not, is only there to show the clothing. If the model were to be overweight, you would have another decrease in self-esteem.
Consequently, if you have a majority of 'normal' (regular BMI) models, the 2 far ends of the BMI scale would not be happy about their image in society.

If a girl has a problem with her self-esteem, the problem should not be sought at the media firms, but at the surroundings of the girl.
In my experience everyone has his little thing on his body that he is ashamed of and likes to emphasize.

I do thank my opponent for his answer and am looking forward for an answer

Sources used:

none (yet)
Debate Round No. 2


What I meant in the title was not just a little self-consious, like I would expect everybody has, but to the point where girls are missing meals, upset or embarrassed of who they are.
FRom a young age I think that children grown up smothered with models. Models are picked to promote a brand purely on appearance therefore that is almost telling the children that this is how the attractive people appear. The surroundings of the child are these models because wherever they go a product will be promoted using a person. Girls then feel that the only way to be desirable is to appear like this because of the general publics brain-washed opinion of the ideal person. This is the fault of the media for showing this image. I remember looking at the front cover of a magazine and on that front over was a celebrity in a bikini. She was what I and my family considered to be a normal weight. And yet the headline stated "Woah, when did *Celebrity's name" gain all this weight". As I continued to read the article they talked about her excess fat that she was carrying around. Anyone reading that magazine will see that this is what in the medias opinion considered fat and would then become self-conscious and as I'm sure you already know young minds are the easiest to influence, so they would become the most influenced by this photo. If we were to use a healthy BMI model in the media children would aspire to be like that and would therefore know that their weight is the healthy weight. Those at the two ends of the scale can then get themselves to the 'healthy' body, as it is dangerous for somebody to be either under or overweight. The media could also promote the idea of exercise rather than dieting.
I also would like to present myself as an example, I am a teenage girl who spent the whole of my childhood believing, because of all the models I saw that I was fat. I now look back at pictures of myself an I can see that I was, in fact, as the doctors said underweight. I listen to other teenage girls every day moan about their body weight and how they wish to be the weight of a supermodel or size 4. Who influenced them and me? The Media. And because of that I look back at my younger childhood and I feel upset. Because in the time when I needn't worry about my weight, because it was no issue, in the time when I should have been painting and drawing and eating lollipops. I was hungry and upset.
As for my source last week I attended a talk given by a retired diet specialist, I made notes on the talk she gave as I needed them for an exam taken. I can provide you with their name if you desire to look them up?


I thank my opponent for his answer and am sorry for my quite late answer.

I think you pretty much explained the problem there is with girls nowadays is explained in your answer.
" Girls then feel that the only way to be desirable is to appear like this because of the general public brain-washed opinion of the ideal person. "
"I also would like to present myself as an example, I am a teenage girl who spent the whole of my childhood believing, because of all the models I saw that I was fat. I now look back at pictures of myself an I can see that I was, in fact, as the doctors said underweight. I listen to other teenage girls every day moan about their body weight and how they wish to be the weight of a supermodel or size 4. "
These are the problems girls have nowadays, I will concretely explain what is wrong about it:
Girls nowadays think they are underrated and overrate the opinions of the boys, as a teenage boy I can confirm this by simply listening to my surroundings ( Statistics available on demand ) boys do not look for the most pretty and skinny girl, its quite the opposite in fact, boys nowadays prefer something normal. They would rather have a friendly, decently looking girl than an overcomplexed skinny girl.

As to answer your question about the two far ends of the market that have to be normal, I totally understand your argument but to me it is not valid. You (and professionals) think the normal BMI is actually normal, now those 2 far ends will disagree with you and their opinion has to be respected.

Your counterargument could be that the professionals did say the opposite, but then again, Scientology would not exist if that were to be valid.

The fact that it starts earlier and earlier on (the watching on weight trend) is something I can not explain and would love an explanation too. As I think the media is not responsible at all.

In my country media does not promote dieting but rather healthy food and healthy living, exercise is considered quite important where I am from. (Belgium)

As for your sources, I will take you on your word.

I look forward to your answer in this interesting debate.
Debate Round No. 3


Thank you for your answer and do not worry about the late reply!

Yes I did the problem with the girls is the fault of the media, so I began by explaining the problem and how the media affects this. That's the problem though, often boys think that they are going for the normal weighted nice girls, but when teenage girls look at one and other it is ALWAYS the thin, pretty one that everybody admires including boys. Because of the media girls believe that all boys look for is image when in fact it is not. It is interesting to hear that of boys, but the fact of here (England) boys tend not to refer to a girl by her personality they would refer to her as her image, perhaps they would not refer to her weight, but they tend to find the thinner girls 'prettier', 'nicer' or 'better' again because of the media influence. You said decent looking which again means that looks are involved, which is again not surprising of corse referring to image, probably indirectly because of the media.
In England many boys drool over women like Megan Fox for example. They have no idea what her personality is like, but she is a thin, made up, breasty woman. By the media spreading the word of how desirable this woman is; boys are influenced to desire her and girl then from the media and boys feel that this is how they should appear.
Of corse their opinion has to be respected, but I would also like to add that BMI results do not accurately portray a said persons weight. For example my older brother is small, but incredibly muscular. His BMI says they he is grossly overweight, when in fact there is not an ounce of fact on his body, so not all BMI results are accurate to go on.
So you think that image is not influenced by the media? You do not think that the media drives whats 'hot' and whats 'not'?
Media in England promotes the same thing, but unfortunately many people are lazy, so would not bother to do that. The media instead also heavily promotes dieting.
Thank you very much.
I look forward to hearing your counter-argument.


Thank you for the answer to this debate.

To make this debate progress I will try to take a whole other point of view on the matter (I will still answer your arguments afterwards).

In the course of history, we have seen all sorts of trends, in the 19th century pale, fat woman were 'in' because this meant they were rich and did not work. In the first half of the 20th century the "pretty woman" was totally different, this changed again in the second half. Now in the 21st century the normal girl is a normal (not too skinny nor too fat) girl who has a decent overall ratio. We prefer a girl who is skinny not because the media tells us to but because our parents educated us this way. They have always taught us to eat healthily and to exercise, which automatically makes us prefer the skinnier girl because we can identify faster to her lifestyle since it fits in our educational scheme.

I will now answer your arguments.
The thin, pretty one is always admired more for rather simple reasons, she seems to take care of herself. This is only applicable to a certain level, all schools and boys have specific types of girls they would rather look at, the question is why they look at that specific type and not at another. This because she is nicer to look at, but does this mean the boy would rather talk to her or to the other, shy girl next to the pretty one? I am not that sure. In my closer circles I have asked what would be chosen first. The answer was the same, the pretty, skinny one is the model, but they would never, ever think about more, simply because they realise that that is only superficial. This for reasons I have mentioned before concerning education.

Lets turn this debate around, imagine if the media would, tomorrow, decide that the new 'hot' are obese, hobo-looking girls. What do you think the reaction of the male population would be? Would they all change their images of the nice looking girl?

I am afraid your media is a standalone in this case since most mainland tv and radio stations do not promote dieting, they do promote healthy eating which is something of a totally different order.

I am honestly looking forward to your response.

Debate Round No. 4


Thank you, this is a very interesting debate.

That is true that the trends change, and because of the way that they are publicised the type of woman that is promoted people will possibly find that type more attractive or appealing.

That is an interesting point that you think it is our parents. My parents have always raised myself and my brothers thata to be a normal weight is healthy and more attractive than to be skinny, so we have been bought up thinking and agreeing with that. Off the top of my head I do not know any parents who encourage being thin. The media are those who promote the thin girls, they promote the stick thin models, they promote the stick thin celebrities, and they promote the stick thin sizes, yet this only happens to girls.
Males are encouraged to eat healthily and exercise well and the media promotes the healthy men as the attractive ones. Yet the attractive female icons all tend to be thin and they are the idolised ones by the media. Constantly reporting on how to look like them and how beautiful they are.

Thank you for your results of your own investigation, that's very interesting. She does tend to take care of herself, but there are plenty of people who take just as much care of themselves, yet are not as striking to look at. I'm not saying all boys, but generally at the schools that I have been at tend to go for or be immediately more attracted t the pretty skinny model like one, because of how simply striking they are. Often these girls are flirty and the general teenage boy enjoys a flirt, especially with this type of girl then leading other onlooking girls to believe this is how boys are attracted to you, this is how to look if you would ever like a male to have an interest in you. I didn't think that they would realise that perhaps this model is superficial underneath. Again I come back to the initial attraction they would have been taken in by the looks and I do not think many boys would turn down a model, initially.

I however do not feel that parents are those promoting skinny girls. I think immediately the male population would not be brainwashed overnight into suddenly believing that they are beautiful. However a particular talent of the media is to persuade and make what they want to become loveable and sweet, so I do not doubt that with time they could become beautiful and desirable. With the persuasive ability of the media. The media everywhere promotes healthy eating and exercise but could you tell me honestly that you have never seen a dieting advert on TV, on the computer, on any mobile device? You have never had a pop-up beside your screen saying 'easy weight loss tips and tricks' and things like that? You have never seen weight-watchers adverts promoted by the media? You have never seen models or celebrities that are thin being promoted as somebody beautiful or somebody to idolise? If you have not then I believe that your media is a standalone.
Lastly I would like to thank you for such an interesting, intriguing debate. You bought up many things that I did not consider and I have genuinely enjoyed this debate thoroughly, I am sad to see it end! I look forward to your final response and wish you all the best in other debates you take part in. Thank you.


Great counter argument, will answer your argument right away!

I would like to correct myself on one note, however, by using education as an argument I mean that our parents learn us to eat healthily and to exercise, which will automatically make us grow up as a normal sized person. Thing is that being normally sized is automatically being skinny. In this case skinny does not mean anorexic but skinny means normal, this idea is also integrated in our norms which is clearly visible on the boy's side, we need to have the magnificent "six-pack" else way this means we are not exercising. So skinny is automatically normal, anorexic is not however.

I would like to bring another point of view on the matter yet again.
Media: ( usually used with a plural verb ) the means of communication, as radio and television, newspapers,and magazines, that
reach or influence people widely:
The media are covering the speech tonight.
As points out.

What would be the benefits of the promoting of this be for the media? How does a paper, radio or television company gain anything from promoting those ads? Apart from the ad money, they make no indirect benefits out of this.
What would be the benefits of the actual company sending out their ads? None, yet again, the weight does not influence the image of the product. I will expand this idea.
If a girl sees this beautiful, stick skinny model, she will not relate to it and she will try to look like her because she thinks this is the norm. The company does not gain anything from this girl trying to get skinnier and slimmer, they do not get the benefits weigh watcher does have, not do they get any good publicity out of it. So they are not to blame, nor is the media for this.

I do agree that there is indeed a problem with the image the girls have of themselves, but I do not think the media is to blame. The guilty of this is society in general, from parents to grandparents to employees and boys, not to forget the company leaders. Somehow the media and the clothing companies felt like there was a need for skinny models, but this idea did not come from themselves, this idea came from the society. Which automatically means society sent out a signal saying they are in need for skinny girls and they prefer it.

Truth is beauty is something subjective, and unless a population has a great lack of critical thinking, they will not go for the obvious choices. A boy with a least bit of critic thinking will not go for the pretty one, especially if he knows she flirts.
Then again, this way of thinking gets sparser these days, this causes the problem to expand and to make more girls feel socially impaired, while in fact, a healthy girl is far more enjoyable.

As of the ads you pointed out, those are a side effect of the signal sent by society, and they try to take a piece of the pie.

I wish you the exact same thing! Great debate overall and great conduct, very enjoyable opponent!
Hopefully we will get in another debate!
Debate Round No. 5
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by AdamKG 2 years ago
I would not say that media is necessarily at fault. Females are naturally conscious about their appearance and body at puberty. Almost any teenage girl in the U.S. could serve as an example of that (not to sound creepy at all). It is a natural state that women want to appear attractive to males and vice-versa. The media just serves as a blatant example to girls and just encourages it.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Buckethead31594 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct was tied. S/G were tied. Arguments go to Con for their deep questions; some of which, Pro failed to answer. Sources goes to Con as well for providing the only linkable source.