Thursday, 1 May 2014

Disappointment with "The Monthly" - Mag turns to Rag

Have you ever read the magazine "The Monthly"?  I have, I really like it and subscribed for six months. When the subscription ran out they sent me a complimentary copy in April. It was a nice gesture - sure they enclosed an insert to encourage me to "get reacquainted, resubscribe today and save 36%" - fair enough. I considered doing just that. However, when I opened the issue for a cursory perusal, I found on page 5 a full page add for the ANZ Bank and page 7 a full page add for Chevron (coal seam gas junkies). Frankly I was astounded and disappointed and left my credit card in its wallet.

I felt obliged to write to them:


To whom it may concern

Recently you sent me a complimentary issue (April 2014) of The Monthly after my subscription had expired. As I do regard your publication as excellent in many regards I was thinking of renewing the subscription. However, after opening the magazine and finding full page advertisements for the ANZ Bank and for Chevron (Natural Gas) I immediately decided not to subscribe.
I am totally bemused by the fact that a publication that, refreshingly, offers, in quality of journalism and diversity of content, an alternative to mainstream publications that are largely constrained and biased by their reliance on large corporations, would accept advertising from such companies. To accept money from a major private bank, that profits immensely from both outrageous fees and the debt slavery imposed on most Australians to put a roof over their heads, is disappointing at the very least. To accept money from a multinational corporation that will basically steal our natural resources and, in the process destroy the planet's environment, is simply unbelievable for any ethical business.

Yours sincerely
Sean Crawley.

I have not received a response, but yesterday did receive, the May issue of the magazine - again complimentary. A quick scan through the magazine revealed that on pages 5 and 7 the full page ads are this month for the Sydney Film festival and an SBS DVD release. This was quite encouraging and maybe I had actually struck a chord and influenced their choice of advertisers. My delusions of self importance were revealed to be just that. As I flicked through.  I found on page 31, a full page advertisement taken out by Lockheed Martin. The ad is shamelessly promoting their F-35 fighter Jet - "FOR SECURITY. FOR JOBS. FOR AUSTRALIA". 

Not sure if I will write to the subscription department again, but am certain the debit card is staying in the wallet regardless. 


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  2. Yikes! Well, we can rest assured that will never happen with SHIFT magazine!

    And while we're on the topic of alternative media, isn't it sad that New Matilda is folding? Just before its 10th birthday - because they can't afford to keep the publication going. People just don't seem prepared to pay for quality journalism, and the reporters couldn't afford to continue working for peanuts :-(