Thursday, June 29, 2006

New Republic takes a swipe at your friendly blogger

The New Republic published an article (account required) earlier this week about World Ahead and the "Help Mom" series that's part of our Kids Ahead imprint. Overall it's less of a hatchet job than I might've expected, but conveniently they omitted a couple of important points.

First, these days "mainstream" publishers are very busy marketing politically oriented children's books directly at kids. At a panel entitled "Trends in Children's Publishing" at BEA last month, the panelist from Random House crowed about how they're using "cause marketing" to lure kids into wanting to purchase their books, a sentiment echoed by the representative from Simon & Schuster. Cause marketing, as the panelist put it, is basically telling kids that what this book advocates will make you feel good and important, so you need to get your parent to purchase it for you. Apparently Random is using this for books pushing environmentalism.

Unlike the liberal dominated big publishers in NYC, Kids Ahead books aren't targeted at children. Our marketing and publicity are geared towards their parents. Author Katharine DeBrecht and I agree that adults -- and not kids -- are the ones who should decide if a book dealing with political issues is appropriate for a child to read. If memory serves, I discussed "cause marketing" with the TNR reporter for several minutes and explained why we felt there are ethical problems with publishers targeting their marketing directly at kids.

Second, Help! Mom! There are Liberals Under My Bed and Help! Mom! Hollywood's in My Hamper aren't being forced onto children by liberal-dominated government bodies such as public schools and libraries. But while having Mass. school teachers read books like King & King or Rainbow Fish to their second grade classes is OK with TNR, the thought of parents wanting to make an informed decision about imparting their values to their children is just too horrible for liberals to ponder.


  • your a twat,aren't you?

    By Anonymous Phillip Keane, at 6:01 PM  

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