'Playboy' Brings Nudity Back to the Magazine After a Year-Long Ban on Naked Pictorials

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After one year of non-nude issues, Playboy is bringing naked photographs back to the magazine.

The move was announced by Chief Creative Officer Cooper Hefner on Monday.

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"I'll be the first to admit that the way in which the magazine portrayed nudity was dated, but removing it entirely was a mistake," Hefner tweeted.

Hugh Hefner's 25-year-old son provided further explanation in an article published to the Playboy website. In it, Cooper gives a history lesson about the origins of Playboy, which was founded by his father 63 years ago.

"Underneath the brand's pop culture elements, which most frequently floated to the surface of newsworthy over everything else, it was clear my dad's aim when launching Playboy was to promote a healthy conversation about sex while also encouraging dialogue on social, philosophical and religious opinions," he wrote. "The idea behind the magazine was that while these topics were popular in people's minds, they were almost never spoken about in public or discussed over dinner or drinks at cocktail parties around the country, as they should have been.

"Nonetheless, many misinterpreted that message or missed it entirely, choosing instead to focus on the magazine's unapologetic portrayal of nudity and its revolutionary approach to sex, including conversations about the act itself."

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The decision to become a more PG-13 publication was announced in October 2015. The move was reportedly inspired by the traffic bump of 12 million more users per month after the Playboy website ditched naked images in August 2015.

Gavin Bond for Playboy

Playboy published its first non-nude issue in March 2016. But now, after becoming the magazine's chief creative officer last year, Cooper is proud to be bringing the publication back to the element that put them on the map.

"At this point in history, the most vital intellectual discussion we can have is how to create a society that's as free as possible without ignoring the social and economic implications of our policy decisions," Cooper wrote in his article, titled "The New Playboy Philosophy: An Introduction." "We need to identify who our allies are at a time when, on the liberal side, a culture of political correctness discourages debate that may hurt people's feelings and, on the conservative side, politicians seem comfortable jeopardizing the rights of specific groups in the belief that it will 'make America great again.'"

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The March/April 2017 issue of Playboy, the first to bring back nudity, will be available on newsstands and Playboy.com on Feb. 28.