(By Ray D.)
Stern Magazine Crumbles in the face of Massive Pressure
In 2005, we first reported on a series on the history of the United States that Stern magazine, one of Germany's most widely read weekly magazines, has featured on its website for several years. Until very recently, the introductory headline looked this way:
BEFORE DAVIDS MEDIENKRITIK:
“The History of the USA: No nation has ever dominated the globe like the USA. And its people could care less about the rest of humanity." (circled below)
After we published our open letter to Stern less than two weeks ago in official protest, other sites took notice and joined the effort. Scores of readers undoubtedly emailed the magazine to demand they remove the line. After leaving the Hate-America headline up on their site for so many years, Stern finally decided to make a change:
AFTER DAVIDS MEDIENKRITIK:
"The History of the USA: No nation has ever dominated the globe like the USA. The Stern series describes the history of the United States of America from the colonization to the present."
This humble victory is further proof that Davids Medienkritik and its readers and partners in the blogosphere can make a difference and demand greater accountability and professionalism from media. The "journalists" at Stern and elsewhere will think twice about publishing this sort of anti-American hate speech again. For that, we thank everyone who supported this effort. Incidentally, this is not the first time we have successfully confronted Stern, and it may not be the last. Stern has a long, well-documented history of this sort of activity. In the long-term, changing attitudes will be far more difficult than changing a few lines of text.
Endnote: To our knowledge, Stern has still made no formal apology for its actions and has not responded to complaints or emails other than to quietly change the line above. If any of our readers actually received a response, we would love to hear about it. Stern has also failed to acknowledge its correction in any official manner on its site or otherwise. Perhaps the editors think they can minimize their own embarrassment with their readers and placate us as well by just acting like this never really happened. It is high time that Stern come out and openly acknowledge that it was wrong in a formal apology and accept responsibility for its actions by posting a clear correction notice.