Brooke Birmingham, the 28 year old blogger from Quad Cities behind brookenotonadiet.com, managed to lose a whopping 172 pounds over the past four-and-half years. Her amazing weight loss success story managed to capture the attention of Shape magazine. The well known publication wanted to make a success story to present her amazing journey and contacted her for an interview a week ago.
The problem came after the interview, when the magazine refused to use the bikini photo she sent them to include for the feature and asked for a different picture of her wearing a shirt.
Shape magazine's refusal to include the photo she sent them made Brooke furious, since she perceived it as a veiled refusal to offer a clear, realistic view of how bodies look like after losing such an impressive amount of weight, especially given the fact that many other similar features on the magazine's website don't abide the same principle.
This was the moment when her refusal to send a different picture and her response to the magazine managed to become viral.
In a recent blog post titled “Why I Refused to Put a Shirt on For Shape”, the blogger explained her position: “If anything, they should want my picture on their site. My body is real, not photoshopped or hidden because I feel like I should be ashamed. This is a body after losing 172 pounds, a body that has done amazing things, and looks AMAZING in a freaking bikini.”
Shape magazine's response to the controversy came soon after. The magazine's reps stated that the issue was a result of a misunderstanding and that the picture Brooke sent will be published. "This is a result of a misunderstanding with a freelance writer. This does not represent Shape's editorial values and the comments made about Shape's 'editorial policy' are absolutely untrue. Shape prides itself on empowering and celebrating women like Brooke, and any indication that we would not run the piece with the photo provided was wrong, as we would have been proud to share her inspirational story," a spokesperson told E!Online.