Caption Competition: Daily Mail and Mental Illness

Following my post yesterday on THAT awful Daily Mail article about mental illness, it looks like the Fail have at least partially responded to all the people condemning it on Twitter. They’ve removed the incredibly triggering self-harm image from the webpage.

People were condemning the article, not only for the self-harm pic, but also for having an utterly patronising and outdated view of people with mental health problems. So, naturally they’d want to replace the photo with something that avoids all those stereotypes that they’ve been accused of propagating.

Oh. That’s, erm….much better?

As I said yesterday, back in the days of the Mental Nurse blog (RIP) we used to get our laughs by running caption competitions on these kinds of cliched media images of what all people with mental health problems are supposed to look like. On that note, I think it’s time for an inaugural Not So Big Society caption competition.

And while we’re at it, we might as well do captions for the other two photos used for the Mail’s article.

I’ll offer a few to get things started:

Pic 1: “My psychosis hell. I thought a toddler was strangling me as I was walking through the park.”

Pic 2: “Help! Help! I’m trapped in a Daily Mail article!”

Pic 3: “New research shows Zorbing is ineffective at treating mental illness.”

Add your own suggestions in the comments threads.

Newspaper editors: when you stop putting these stupid images on every news article about mental health, we’ll stop giving them silly captions.

13 thoughts on “Caption Competition: Daily Mail and Mental Illness

  1. For picture 2 (and slightly out of date for a Haloween theme)

    “Ghosts need to look after their mental health toooooooo….”

  2. The hands against the glass picture looks an advert for the Human Centipede film. The self-harm picture made me laugh out loud, I could get into the technicality of that..
    I also fail to see how “mental illness” [everywhere has gone medical model mad, including the charities who have switched from mental distress back to illness – this is of course bar the recovery fanatics who wouldn’t be seen dead saying illness but would beat anyone with a metaphorical stick for taking professional support, not being in paid work, and failing to not be impervious to everything] costs more than cancer and cardiovascular disease. Good grief smoking and alcohol related diseases costs every country more than “mental illness”, and I don’t know where the cost of HIV/AIDS features on the what costs the most scale but it’s gotta be high up on that list, I cannot believe that “mental illness” is in the no 1 spot for costing the NHS the most and frankly even if it did – the blame lies at the feet of the pharmaceutical industry of which DSM is a mining exercise for opening up new seams of human experience for profit and exploitation.

    As for captions: Reading the Daily Mail is like being the middle person in the Human Centipede – taking shit – giving shit

  3. Picture 2 – Julie realised she just couldn’t avoid calling the window cleaner out any longer.

  4. I’ve just enabled comment ratings, so people can click on the thumbs-up gif if they want to award points to a caption suggestion. We can then declare a winner at some point.

  5. OMG They used that exact same image for a story about a 12 year old being gang raped!!!! (The one they have replaced the self-harm pic with) that is sick! 😦

  6. Pic 1 – ” I’m in a stock photo for the Daily Mail? NOW I’m depressed”
    Pic 2 – Too late John realised why you shouldn’t light your farts
    Pic 3 – Alison soon learned to deal with living at the end of the new Stanstead runway

    see, Human Centipede that 2nd photo.

    Picture 2 caption: Reading the Daily Mail is like being the middle person in the Human Centipede – taking shit – giving shit

  8. Perhaps reading the Daily Mail or writing for the Daily Mail could be a new diagnosis for DSM – any suggestions?!

  9. speaking of DSM [off topic I know but for anyone who’s interested]:

    there are campaigns to rid DSM of the BPD label and to reframe/name Schizophrenia to psychosis sub groups with words which attach more meaning such as trauma/drug/sensitivity/related psychosis.

  10. My Mum reads the Fail – had a huge row about it a few months ago.

    Yeah – totally inappropriate – all shades of WRONG!

    Image two was like what I could see out of the plastic window in the rubber room I was once in – they can see you, but you can’t see them! Not helpful to be reminded of the awful claustrophobia that they ignored.

    I find the last image most interesting: why is it that pictures like these are always set up so that the crouching person has bare feet? It is a common depiction of “madness” – the crazy who are so bonkers that they forget to put their shoes on… Shoes are seen as the epitome of civilisation in the West. No wonder so many racist pigs pointed out that the blacks in South Africa were also imbeciles because of their bare feet. God help if you were black, mentally ill and gay – have we really come such a small distance that this paper knows it can show these images to their readership and no-one bats an eyelid or reads the symbolism behind the pictures?

    Clarissa X

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