Saturday, July 10, 2010

Seed Magazine

Freelance writer Gaia Vince presents an amazing (and, it seems to me, believable) claim about Seed Magazine -- that they killed her column on the Bhopol chemical disaster because it was critical of Dow Chemical (parent company of that which caused the 1984 explosion), who was about to become one of Seed's advertisers.

This is, of course, the most serious charge that can be leveled against a magazine.

Vince's piece eventually ran on the BBC.

It takes a lot of guts for a freelancer to do this kind of exposure, which necessarily burns bridges and endangers future bridges. And it's an enormous black eye for Seed, the subscription-cancelling kind. I'm amazed anyone in their editorial department would have even admitted it to her.

No response from Seed yet as far as I know....

1 comment:

rhhardin said...

The cause isn't known, but nothing exploded.

Union Carbide claimed sabotage by a disgruntled worker. The results of a joint investigation were never released, according to wiki.

The plant was half-owned by India.

There's a question about hit-jobs that comes up, and since the point of a hit-job is ratings, it has the same units (so to speak) as advertising negotiations; rather than of truth versus money.

Dow came on the scene 15 years later to buy out Union Carbide.