Bloomberg Businessweek Magazine Cover Stirs Controversy

Bloomberg Businessweek CoverIn this day and age reporters, editors and anybody working in the news industry at times covers controversial stories, how they deliver them usually results in a split between supporters and angry individuals.

For the editors of the Bloomberg Businessweek magazine, they are taking a pretty hard backlash on their decision to run what some are saying a racist front cover to the newest magazine issue. The magazine has been known in the past for it’s “Interesting front covers” that have stretch the boundaries on touchy subjects and major issues.

It is once again back in the spotlight as the editors announced an apology yesterday on their regret of publishing a controversial housing cover.

“Our cover illustration got strong reactions, which we regret, if we had to do it over again, we’d do it differently,” Bloomberg Businessweek’s editor in chief, Josh Tyrangiel said in a statement to Yahoo News.

The front cover is a cartoon illustration of what some people believe is a black family, in which they are in a two story pink house grabbing money from a recent housing rebound.

The cartoon artist behind the picture is a Peru-born, Minneapolis native named Andres Guzman who had been commissioned by the magazine; he gave his view point of how and why he drew this illustration.

“I was asked to make an excited family with large quantities of money, so I simply drew the family like that because those are the kind of families I know, I am Latino and grew up around plenty of mixed families,” Guzman said in a statement.

The picture itself, is making several headlines, but the caption below and the story to go with it, raises a few more eyebrows as well.

The caption under the picture reads Flips. No-look bids. 300 percent returns, what could possibly go wrong? Jacob Gaffney who is a writer for HousingWire explains his opinion on the particular headline.

“First of all, flipping is a form of fraud and not a typical transaction. Second, No-look bids are not exclusive to Hispanic and African-American investors. No matter how you look at it, no one is making a 300% return,” Gaffney said.

“I think the claim that minorities are creating a housing bubble through flipping, no-look bids, and 300% returns is just simply not reality at all,” Gaffney said.

In a blog on Politico, writer Emily Badger for The Atlantic brought up a good point, in which she mentioned that the relevant article makes no mention of the racial dynamics of the housing market, or the role of predatory lending. She also explained her point of view on the whole controversial issues of the front cover.

“We still can’t decide what’s most offensive about it: the caricature of the busty, sassy Latina, the barefooted black man waving cash out his window, that woman in the upstairs left-hand corner who looks about as dim-witted as her dog?” Badger said.

There are writers, reporters, and editors that have their own perspective of this controversial magazine cover and took to their blogs to express their feelings.

“The idea is that we can know things are really getting out of hand since even nonwhite people can get loans these days! They ought to be ashamed,” Slate blogger Matthew Yglesias wrote in a blog.

Ryan Chittum of the Columbia Journalism Review mentioned that he finds it hard to imagine how the cover actually made it through the editorial process.

If you follow the magazine you probably know this is not the first time it has been in the cross hairs of a controversial issue, in fact that is actually what made the editor-in-chief Josh Tyrangiel the advertising age’s 2012 Editor of the year for his ability to “Push the envelope”.

“I’m glad that our covers have captured a lot of attention and that some people call them controversial, but that’s really only because the stories themselves are controversial, part of it is that we have a group of people here who are not afraid to handle really hot subjects,”  Tyrangiel said in a statement

So after looking at the picture and hearing about the story, do you believe the cover is racist?

Bloomberg’s Old-School Racist Magazine Cover

Bloomberg’s Businessweek magazine has a new cover for their issue on a new housing bubble. It shows black and latino caricatures grabbing at money, and it implies they are to blame for the last housing bubble burst.

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