Vogue Italia editor-in-chief Franca Sozzani launched a petition on March 18 against pro-anorexia websites, and pointed to Facebook for propagating the disease among young women and teens.
Pro-anorexia websites, also known as "pro-ana" sites, offer instructions, inspiration, and tips for an anorexic and/or bulimic lifestyle. Many sites usually feature "thinspiration," or photographs or video montages, featuring slender or excessively thin models or celebrities.
On her blog, Sozzani cited a February study from the University of Haifa in Israel which surveyed 248 girls on their internet and media usage and their eating habits and attitudes regarding weight loss. The study found that "the more time adolescent girls spend in front of Facebook, the more their chances of developing a negative body image and various eating disorders, such as anorexia, bulimia and exaggerated dieting."
"Models, as I have underlined before," wrote Sozzani on her blog, "are in most cases naturally long, lean and slender being still very young and still not fully developed. The image they convey, however, is often that of an excessive thinness, but designers themselves discard those who are visibly suffering from nutritional problems."
Sign Vogue Italia's petition to shut down pro-anorexia websites and blogs: http://www.vogue.it/en/magazine/petition-against-pro-anorexia-websites
Read Sozzani's blog: http://www.vogue.it/en/magazine/editor-s-blog/2011/03/march-18th
Access the Facebook study: http://newmedia-eng.haifa.ac.il/?p=4522