Editorial impartiality (was reviews)

Editorial impartiality (was reviews)

Post by Dave Will » Sun, 23 Mar 1997 04:00:00



All this talk about Fine Scale Modelers editorial impartiality when it
comes to reviews not wanting to upset advertsiers (which is ***anyway),
how come noone has picked up on Scale Aviation Modeler and Revell?

Now Revell are a major advertsier with SAMI, they even had adjoining stands
at the IPMS UK show (they are are even based in the same town) and the
magazine runs grovelling box outs almost every issue thanking Revell for
supplying paints and stuff to the editorial team, yet when have you ever
seen SAMI really slate a Revell kit?

Why don't they just call it Revell Magazine and let us know where they
really stand?!

 
 
 

Editorial impartiality (was reviews)

Post by SKarv » Mon, 24 Mar 1997 04:00:00


I am no lover of SAMI, though a dedicated reader.  I have emailed DMZee
several long letters critical of articles they have published that have
been inaccurate (Mitch Thompson's being particularly deserving on this


<< [snip] the magazine runs grovelling box outs almost every issue
thanking Revell for supplying paints and stuff to the editorial team, >>

Quite to the contrary, I find them not groveling (they merely say "SAMI
would like to estend our thanks...), and indeed editorially honest as they
let readers (even paranoids like Dave) know to whom they are beholden.
Since both Aeromaster and Humbrol are also acknowledged in the same
fashion as paint suppliers, just how much of a hold can Revell exert for
their paints and accessoriees (not mysterious "stuff").

<<yet when have you ever seen SAMI really slate a Revell kit?>>

I haven't really been paying close attention to every Revell kit reviewed
by this publiccation, but in the last I have to hand (Feb. '97), of nine
items reviewed, only one is Revell--their Spitfire Vb in 1/72--reviewed by
Bob Humphreys.  The reviewer notes 1) a too-narrow canopy, 2) the
"inexcusable" absence of molding the Spit gull-wing, and 3) inaccurately
colored decal codes and fuselage band.  Of course, Mr. Humphreys does wind
up 'excusing' the kit's faults by writing "I was very impressed with this
kit," which has an FSM 'accentuate' the positive conclusion

In ten pages of Accessories and Decals, there is not other Revell product.

<<Why don't they just call it Revell Magazine and let us know where they
really stand?!>>

Dave's parting shot is quite amazing, since, using the Feb. issue as an
example, there isn't any Revell advertising in it either!  A qualified 1/3
page review does not a mouthpiece make!
Indeed, one thing that Dave doesn't seem to have noticed in his desire to
see a boogey-man manufacturer behind every SAMI page is that SAMI--and the
British modeling magazines generally--would appear much *less* under the
influence of the big producers since their advertising Pound Sterling
appears to come more from the large hobby shops--not the manufacturers.  A
much healthier situation for editorial independence, it would seem to me,
than, say FSM.
In the Feb. SAMI, 7 pages of 8 1/2 pages of adds are from retailers; one
page may be paid for by Revell (p. 111, "Word Search"); and 1/2 page by
Pegasus.

Whatever their support, there must be significant economic differences in
running a Brit publication, since they manage a much lower ad to edit
ratio than is usual for American publications of all kinds--which tends
toward the 50/50 level or worse.  When has FSM come close to supplying the
quality art found in the 3 color pages of details and profiles on the F6F
of Michelle Marsan or the detailed build info of the 2nd part of Dave
Batt's Classic Airframes Defiant?
Regards,
Steph