Miss World: A Good Pageant, In Spite of Itself

This web site’s pageant coverage has focused on the two great international competitions: Miss Universe and Miss World. Donald Trump, for better or worse, owns Miss Universe, while Miss World has remained in the same British hands for decades. Both pageants have their strong points; Miss World not only has a talent competition–long ago abandoned by Miss Universe–but has a system of preliminary contests where the winners of the talent, sports and beach beauty contests automatically advance to the semi-final round.

That’s all good. Unfortunately, Miss World has an awful web site, characterized by mediocre or worse photography. What I wrote in 2009 is, unfortunately, still true today:

The photography is mediocre at best, and the pop-up style they use for photographs makes it hard to drag them. The best thing about the site is probably the videos of contestants, but only a minority of contestants have videos. It is hard to understand how anyone can run a beauty pageant and fail to understand the importance of photography. Beauty pageants are a bit like the Republican Party; the concept is great, but the execution is often mystifyingly poor.

Sadly, nothing has changed. The photography lacks any theme or standardization. Some photos pop up to a large size, some hardly enlarge, and a considerable number don’t work at all. Some contestants have swimsuit photos, others don’t. In many cases, close-up pictures are merely cropped versions of other shots. Miss World’s web site is, in short, a mess.

Still, you can catch up on the latest news. Currently, the contestants have gathered in London, where the finale will take place on November 6, and the sports competition is in full swing. So far, there doesn’t seem to be much betting going on. If you search around the web, you can eventually find photos of some of the contestants. I took the trouble, so you won’t have to. Here is Miss Venezuela, who I think will be among the favorites:

This is Miss Ecuador:

And, staying with the all-Latin theme, here is Miss Brazil, who also may be a strong contender:

So, if you scout around a little, you can find decent photos of some (but by no means all) of the contestants. This is, of course, no way to run a beauty pageant. We can only hope that by November 6, things will be coming together.


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