JAKARTA (JP): After such publications have been officially banned in this country for years, a new tabloid for adults is expected to hit the streets on June 18 to compete in the increasingly tight market for publications fixated on sex.
The 16-page weekly tabloid Pop will have a cover price of Rp 2,000, with some pages printed in color, managing editor Heru B. Iskandar said on Wednesday in a press conference.
Just like other tabloids focusing on sex and adult stories, Pop -- in itsMay sample edition -- runs a sizzling portrait of actress Sarah Azhari.
The publisher, PT Maret Aktualindo Media Utama, said that Rp 10 from every copy sold would be donated to street children.
The weekly aims to reach readers in Bali, Bandung, Surabaya, several cities in Sumatra, and also overseas markets such as Hong Kong, Singapore and Sydney, with 150,000 copies per edition.
In its sample edition, Pop features hot articles such as ""comfort blankets"" (a euphemism for prostitutes) in Sukabumi, West Java, and tips onhow to achieve sexual satisfaction.
The words and pictures in the sample edition are explicit. Therefore, thepublisher warns on the front page that the tabloid ""is not to be sold to children under 17"".
Just like many sex-oriented media here, including that secretly publishedduring the New Order, most of the stories in Pop are accompanied by erotic photos, although the girls pictured had nothing to do with the girls described in the arousing stories.
According to Heru, the whole idea of starting the publication was ""to make money"".
""What do Indonesian reporters earn here? They are made to work like coolies. He or she could work for 10 years or more and still earn between Rp 3 million and Rp 4 million a month. It's better we make our own businessbased on our profession,"" Heru, 32, a former reporter of Jawa Pos, said.
He said that he and his three colleagues invested Rp 1 billion in the newtabloid.
Following the resignation of former president Soeharto and the significant changes in every sector of life in the country, the number of tabloids featuring sensationalist stories and pictures -- which were prohibited for years -- have grown rapidly in the past few months.
According to Soni, a newspaper seller at Senen bus terminal in Central Jakarta, among the sex tabloids that sell well are Map, Pengakuan, Kesaksian, Nyata, Tangisan Hati and even the sample copies of Pop.
""It is indeed haram (religiously illicit) material. But it still sells well and nobody, including housewives and girls, seem to be ashamed about purchasing the tabloids,"" Soni said.
According to Heru, all photographs of women in the paper were taken with the consent of the subjects.
""Each person is paid between Rp 100,000 and Rp 10 million for one shot,"" Heru said.
But the management of Map has its own rules.
""We do not pay the women a single rupiah for the pictures. They do it willingly,"" said Lazuardi Adi Sage, chief editor of the 20-page Map. (ylt)