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March 28, 2018

Walmart is pulling Cosmopolitan from the checkout aisle, evoking split reactions

Mega-retail chain Walmart announced Tuesday it would stop carrying women's magazine Cosmopolitan in the checkout aisles throughout 5,000 of its U.S. stores.

“While this was primarily a business decision, the concerns raised were heard,” Walmart spokesperson Meggan Kring said in a statement.

Those concerns were raised most vocally by the National Center on Sexual Exploitation. In a statement, the center described the decision as “what real change looks like in our #MeToo culture.”

NCOSE went on to compare the magazine to Playboy, saying it “places women’s value primarily on their ability to sexually satisfy a man.”

The news confounded many on social media, with users expressing dissatisfaction at the chain’s choice to remove a publication that caters to women’s interests, including sex and sexual health, and that’s created by a staff led by women. Many Twitter users called out Walmart for censorship and found humor in Walmart’s misguided attempt to get involved in women’s rights.

Others took it as an opportunity to call out Walmart for other policies it should be addressing instead of Cosmopolitan. Walmart recently announced, like DICK’s Sporting Goods, it would apply stricter restrictions to its sale of guns and assault rifles.

Nonetheless, many on Twitter expressed their approval for the change and echoed NCOSE’s opinions about Cosmopolitan.

Walmart emphasized it will still continue to sell Cosmopolitan in its stores, but it will not be found in the checkout aisle shelves.