SI To Push Models Into Nudity For Swimsuit Issue?

I haven’t seen many images from the SPORTS ILLUSTRATED Swimsuit Issue™ today, but I did watch a little of this SI-shot video of cover model Bar Refaeli, via TMZ:

Bar Refaeli Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Model

(SI marketing geniuses to consider selling ‘uncensored’ swimsuit feature?) 

Over the years, SI has slowly forced the models into more revealing poses. First came models in thongs in the ’90s, and now we have full-blown implied nudity on virtually every page of the issue and SI.com.

Will Sports Illustrated eventually go to an uncensored (nude) version of the swimsuit feature on SI.com?

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With the progression of Sports Illustrated’s racy content, that can only mean one thing. I fully expect that we will see nudity in future Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issues™.

When that will happen, no one knows, but I have great confidence in the folks at Time, Inc. They’ve proven they can mass market what would otherwise be regarded as softcore adult content to mainstream consumers and advertisers.

It’s an astonishing feat, and I have great admiration for anyone who can convince Southwest Airlines to display images of SI models, who are pictured as (implied) nude and wearing thongs in innumerable SI photo layouts, on its planes. Bravo!

SI has made hundreds of millions of dollars off its Swimsuit™ franchise, and you have to believe that the company wants to continue to up the financial return on the product.

I’m guessing at some point we’ll see an “uncensored” version of the annual feature, which will be accessible through a password-protected subscription service on SI.com.

But would that scare off those mainstream advertisers and users? Or increase market share?

Good question. I have a tendency to think that SI could get away with it. Much like you see PPV porn on hotel televisions and cable and satellite TV systems.

Don’t underestimate the folks at Time, Inc.!