The relationship between advertising (brand) and editorial (publication) in fashion has never been straightforward. As journalism scholar Lynda Davis argues ‘editorial is perhaps the most valuable form of media content because it is perceived to be unbiased and believable. Its ‘‘purity’’ (precisely because it is not advertising) derives from its aura of authority and neutrality.’ We examine the notion of editorial transparency, and how four different publishing platforms – The Business of Fashion, Nowness, Porter and The Talks – are dealing with the issue in relation to their respective funding models.
Filled with mentions of Renzo Rosso’s personal relationships with political and religious figures (the Dalai Lama and Shimon Peres are ‘proud to call Renzo as a friend’), sartorial anecdotes (Rosso’s home-made pair of bell-bottom jeans) and charity philanthropy (‘He helps people help themselves.’) Colin McDowell’s gushing recent profile of the OTB industrialist leaves the probing reader with the distinct feeling that the Business of Fashion article has a hidden agenda. But what is it?