Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Maybe veganism doesn't sell magazines
It hasn't been a good year for vegans in the publishing world. We all know the damage done by The New York Times' printing of a column full of fabrications by Nina Planck. Herbivore, the magazine for hardcore vegans, decided to stop printing the magazine. Now, they print a tiny booklet and publish poorer quality stores on the Web. VegNews has been sliding downhill for quite a while in order, I guess, to pick up a larger audience. VegNews doesn't speak to veganism that much anymore; instead, they frame things in a much broader vegetarian sense. VegNews has gotten away from what attracted their core subscribers. These subscribers were reacting to Vegetarian Times basically throwing vegetarians onto the street to appeal to a wider audience (or to make more money). Satya also recently gave up publishing, as well. Now, there's a wide opening if some enterprising person wants to start up a magazine that caters to vegans. Maybe you won't get the widest audience in the world, but we would be loyal as long as you stayed true to your roots. Nothing is more frustrating in the publishing world than people so paranoid about stepping on people's toes. When VegNews and Herbivore were in their heyday, they had no problem printing edgy, even shocking, stories about the food industry and culture. Now, saying something negative is frowned on by publishers worried about selling even more magazines. I'm hoping someone with some decent vegan values sees the need for a new magazine for vegans. Perhaps the next guy won't be so willing to sell out.