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WHSmith will no longer sell Attitude magazine

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Reader comments

  1. 12 Feb 2010, 2:38pm

    As a regular reader of Attitude magazine I am shocked & saddened by the news of WH Smith pulling this gay institution from its shelves. I won’t cry homophobia just yet, but take a look to see if you can find any other positive gay/lesbian literature in their shops will you?

  2. You can but GT and Diva in WHSmiths, is there any other?

  3. LOL *buy not but

  4. if it’s the magazine’s decision, i am guessing it is more about circulation than anything else. With supermarkets stocking everything now, I can imagine that less people go directly to WHSmith for their purchase. The fact that they are still stocking it at train stations and Airport branches would support this.

  5. I’m not sure what the dispute is that has caused Attitude to decide to stop WHSmith stocking their magazine, but WHSMith do sometimes behave as if they have a monopoly on the magazine market, something which regularly irritates various magazine publishers.

  6. BrazilBoysBlog 12 Feb 2010, 4:07pm

    Yes, but this is a bit of a strange story? As the article said, apparently it was not WH Smiths decision to stop stocking Attitude. Their spokeswoman said they were still ´in the middle of talks´ with the publisher. I think this is a bit of a non-story until we get more info?

  7. Christine Rourke 12 Feb 2010, 5:13pm

    Well, I have heard from other magazine publishers that WH Smith are VERY hard-nosed in the way they do business, and that has a serious impact on profits for small-ish print run magazines.

    I doubt it’s anything anti-gay. It’s just WH Smith being their usual bloody greedy selves.


  8. Yup… need more info. And then if it’s down to unreasonableness at WHSmith I could boycott them, if I ever used them, which I don’t. (^_^)

  9. ChutneyBear 12 Feb 2010, 6:00pm

    Well the fact they are mid talk with publishers would OBVIOUSLY show its a business issue, again people insinuating that it might be homophobic when it isnt

  10. Colin Mackay 12 Feb 2010, 6:44pm

    The article said Attitude was also available in Tesco. It must only be the big Tesco Extra stores because I’ve never seen it anywhere local.

  11. i get attitude in a small Tesco outlet. mmm hunky shaft aknacker!

  12. Colin Mackay 12 Feb 2010, 10:44pm

    @Dave: Odd… Must just be Glasgow (or maybe my corner of Glasgow).

  13. Peter Roberts 12 Feb 2010, 10:56pm

    Since when has Attitude been a gay men’s magazine? It’s been pandering to the straight readership for years.

  14. I would stop supplying WH Smiths as well. They are a bad credit risk with the administrators stalking the company daily.

    I doubt they will be around this time next year!

  15. Well, that just sucks. WHSmith is the only place where I live that stocks Attitude – well, other than one of the out of town supermarkets, but since I don’t drive I only go there like once a year, hardly handy. Looks like my gay fix is now online only (don’t buy GT, it’s a load of rubbish since they redesigned it a couple of years ago). Thanks a bunch for this ray of sunshine in a rather homophobic small town, Attitude.

  16. Can you not get a subscription Carl?

  17. Well, at least there’s still “Men’s health” the monthly mag for gay men stuck in the closet pretending to be learning about 10 surefire ways to to “please their woman”!
    Honestly, how many abs exercises do you actually need to know to acheive a six pack? After that it’s all just pictures of ripped guys in gymshorts!

  18. WH Smith do, as a previous poster said, play incredibly hard when it comes to stock negotiations. I work for a specialist trade publication and we’ve gone through similar things.

    It may be that WHS decide to take Attitude off the list of magazines which are supplied to all stores, and instead stock it only in areas where it sees sufficient demand, which is what happened to us.

    Also, bear in mind there are two distinct sections of WHS: Retail and Travel. The former manages stock for the high street branches, the latter for the branches you find in railway stations & airports. Each has separate rules for the titles they will and won’t stock.

  19. “I doubt it’s anything anti-gay. It’s just WH Smith being their usual bloody greedy selves.”

    Yes, I suspect this is the case. WHSmith has a similarly hard and exploitative policy to Amazon. Both should be avoided for the ordering of books. Use both online sites to research your books but then pick up the phone and order them from a small independent bookseller (struggling to survive), and preferably from “Gays The Word” which is now in dire straits due to Camden Council just having raised its rent by 25%!

    WHSmiths now commands the bookshop situation in New Zealand. The result is that all the big bookshops there now only stock “the stuff that sells best”, i.e. the stuff that the herd want to buy. So, for example, there’s a massive amount of books on fashion, on pop music, hundreds of books about young “celebrities”, and hundreds of novels never intended to have any worthwhile literary merit. WHSmiths doesn’t give a toss about quality: it’s concerned only with raking in MONEY.

  20. Tony Konrath 13 Feb 2010, 2:26pm


    I remember when, as a members of GLF & CHE, we would go into Smith’s and demand that they stock Gay News/Times. Then, when they finally did, we went in move the paper from the soft porn section to the news section & put warning stickers on “The Joy Of Sex”

  21. Flapjack

    If closeted guys wanted to look at pictures of ripped guys without the gymshorts, there’s this newfangled thing called the Internet. They don’t have to buy a copy of Men’s Health.

  22. I would get a subscription, but it’s sadly a matter of funds, dropping a lil bit a month is more feasible than a sub

  23. Thanks Scott (18) for explaining WHSmith’s processes.

    Abi (16): Out of interest, I went to the Attitude web site, which said “This is brilliant value at only £1.50 per issue. Subscription prices 13 Issue UK Subscription – £26.00.” Sounds like someone with Attitude has a problem with maths.

    Carl (22): It looks like the high street price is £3.75 per issue though, is it? That’s a huge amount more for someone short of cash. How about going without your Attitude fix for 5 months and then buying a 12-month subscription. You’ll save a bundle!

  24. Jeff Poole 14 Feb 2010, 1:43am

    This may be a purely business decision as noted above but… WH Smith has a long standing problem with queers, maybe because of their puritan roots.

    I worked for one of their specialist stores in the eighties and when wanted to get my staff discount on Gay Times found that I ALWAYS had to order it. Finally after being told by well-meaning staff that ‘I doubt we’d stock that kind of thing’ I complained via internal processes. I got an apology and a couple of back issues and noticed that it began to be stocked.

    So forgive me if I’m a little wary of their reasons.

  25. ChrisP- You’re right there, although it’s a little easier for closet cases to explain leafing through a copy of men’s health on the pretext that they were doing 2 minute forearm workout reps ;)

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