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Posts Tagged ‘Katie Drummond’

The Verge Launches Verge Science, Names Wired’s Katie Drummond Editor

The Verge launched its new Verge Science vertical on Wednesday and tapped Wired reporter Katie Drummond as editor, the publication said.

Drummond most recently covered military research on Wired‘s defense blog, Danger Room, and previously worked at Rupert Murdoch’s failed tablet news app The Daily and for AOL News, where she reported on science and health news.

The new section marks further expansion of the nascent Vox Media-owned tech and culture site that has made a name for itself as a journalist’s news startup, slamming the Huffington Post for scraping 239 words of an aggregated story and touting its thorough, original reporting.

In October, Vox launched Polygon, a videogame news site to rival competitors like Joystiq, Kotaku and IGN.

“We’ll deliver rigorous, thoughtful, authoritative reporting on what’s new, what’s coming next, and why it actually matters — and we’ll make room for both certifiable science geeks and casual readers to find out what inspires them,” Drummond said in a statement.

Keeping with that promise, the section debuted with an investigation into the potential risks of federal research designed to prevent a pandemic, and a Q&A with best-selling science journalist Mary Roach.

Watch Drummond introduce the section in a video here.

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Marie Claire Update: The Magazine Responds To One Commenter’s Allegations

We’ve been keeping you up-to-date on the ongoing tension between Marie Claire and various commenters who felt that the magazine was “mean spirited” in its assessment of six health and fitness bloggers (known as “the big six”) in its article “The Hunger Diaries.”

Marie Claire responded to its readers, letting them know that their opinions were being heard.

Then, someone who went by the name “VeggieGirl88″ left a comment under the article alleging that the magazine had never contacted her for the piece and that the article’s writer, Katie Drummond, fabricated certain aspects of her life and experiences in the story.

Marie Claire quickly responded to these allegations in the comments section as well:

Tuesday, October 05, 2010
Posted by: MarieClaireMag1

Hi VeggieGirl88, we actually do have a record of our mutual correspondence on file. We can contact you privately to confirm. Thanks.

The plot thickens!

Marie Claire Responds To Controversy Surrounding Fitness Blogger Article

Here’s an update on the ongoing controversy surrounding a recent Marie Claire article on a group of health and fitness bloggers known as “the big six.” Yesterday, we gave you a bit of a rundown on the story, (and some of our own commenters weighed in with their thoughts — thoughts worth reading and considering, we think). Today, PR Junkie reports that the magazine has issued a response to the flood of criticism inspired by “The Hunger Diaries:”

To our readers: Thank you all for your responses to this article. Since the piece went online, hundreds of you have written to us. Twitter, Facebook, your blogs, and comments on our website have all been lighting up with messages, and we are thrilled to hear from you. Some of you wrote in anger, while others applauded us for voicing concerns about this community. We believe the outpouring of comments proves the issues raised in the piece are important. This is a controversial subject, and we always welcome a good debate. Like every article published in Marie Claire, this one was researched and edited carefully over the course of many months, and we stand by its content. Thank you for letting us know how you feel — we are listening!

So the magazine has reached out to its readers, but is not apologizing for the research or opinions in the article. Fair enough, we think.

However, PR Junkie has also pointed to a serious allegation made by a woman — who goes by “VeggieGirl88″ — left in the comments section of the story. According to this person, the article’s author, Katie Drummond, never interviewed her and fabricated certain elements relating to her in the story — adding yet another interesting wrinkle to the discussions surrounding the intent and tone of the article.

Does Marie Claire Have An Unhealthy Attitude Towards Health And Fitness Bloggers?

Here’s an interesting bit of a tussle (we wouldn’t call it a “feud,” per se, and tussle is such a cute, underused word anyway) between Marie Claire and six health and fitness bloggers.

Earlier this month, the magazine published a story, “The Hunger Diaries: How Health Writers Could Be Putting You at Risk,” which took a look at how six widely-read health and fitness bloggers — dubbed “the big six” — might be putting out information that not only was not medically sound or verified, but that could be putting their readers at risk for unhealthy eating habits and an obsessive approach to diet and exercise, even though at least one of the six is a registered dietitian.

The bloggers met at a “Healthy Living Summit” last August, organized by the bloggers themselves, with sponsors like Stonyfield Farm, Quaker Oats, Arnold, and Oroweat hoping to get in on the action through sponsorships.

Marie Claire‘s Katie Drummond gives examples of blog posts by the “big six”:

But behind the cutesy titles and sloganeering (Summit motto: “Bloggers for a Balanced Lifestyle”) lies an arguably unhealthy obsession with food, exercise, and weight. The blogs’ pages of meticulous food photographs and descriptions are often updated several times a day and immediately dissected by readers. A typical morning post documents breakfast with a photo and description—say, a smoothie of raw spinach and rice milk—followed by an afternoon report on the day’s herculean exercise and an evening update on perfectly portioned snacks and dinner. Pare once chased a 10-mile run with a flourless, low-fat, black-bean “brownie.”

According to Ragan’s PR Junkie blog, the response to the article across the web was less than supportive, with upset readers taking to Twitter, Marie Claire‘s website and the magazine’s Facebook page to express their disagreement. So far, the magazine has yet to respond, but PR Daily contributor Claire Celsi told PR Junkie that, as she sees it, “I’ll bet after some fact checking is finally done, readers will get an apology.”

It should be noted that, for all the backlash the article has received, Drummond seemed to be careful to frame her argument in terms of the nature of this genre of blogging, not so much on any nefarious intent on the part of the bloggers themselves. An example:

Doctors consulted by Marie Claire supported the women’s aim to be healthy, and said certain meals seemed more nourishing than others, but found aspects of the blogs alarming.

Additionally:

“The sheer number of food images and intense exercise descriptions can be particularly triggering to eating-disorder-prone followers,” says Dr. Robyn Silverman, a developmental psychologist in Mount Freedom, New Jersey, whose book, Good Girls Don’t Get Fat (published in October), addresses influences on female body image.

Of course, while it’s tempting (and a good story!) to frame this as a battle between print and web media, magazine writers and bloggers, the issue isn’t, as I see it, quite that simple…

Read more