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Sep 24, 2017

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From The Publisher Vol. 2.2
by Darryl Roberts
Magazine Issue: Vol. 2.2
F R O M . T H E . P U B L I S H E R
sheer ignorance
N E X T P A G E >

The zero-tolerance disposition of wine snobs never ceases to amaze (or amuse) me. Their cult-like convictions in keeping wine an elitist country club beverage almost surpasses their narrow-minded ignorance of the world around them. In wine snobs' eyes, non-conformity is regarded as an invasion of territorial rights. And, with our premier issue, Wine X dared to tread on those supposed rights by presenting a younger, more active lifestyle, with the message that wine is a beverage for everyone, not just the privileged few.

How dare we!

So I read with great amusement the handful of criticisms we received from those snobs who were offended by our magazine. Their disposition seemed a throwback to the 1950s, when the word "sex" was forbidden to be used in public, and "rock n' roll" was surely the "devil's music." I was particularly amused, though, because these "critics" had obviously not read the publication. If they had, their criticisms exhibited absolutely no intelligence whatsoever. Rather, in much the same way they probably buy their wine, they simply judged us by our label (cover). And because they couldn't relate to it, instead of accepting Wine X as an alternative source for younger consumers, they condemned us as a threat to their inner sanctum of elitist values. (Either that or weren't rated a 95 from Spectator or Parker!)

I expected these letters. How could I not with that cover! The whole point of the first issue was to be controversial. (Name someone/something that gets attention that's not.) So the snob letters didn't bother me. What did bother me, however, was that two rather scathing letters came from fellow wine writers. It's a given that traditional wine consumers will desperately cling to their brainwashed security blanket. It's another issue when wine writers, whose job supposedly is to reflect the big picture, criticize and dismiss a new source simply because they're too old to relate to it. This, my friends, is the real problem with the wine industry: writers who are out of touch with the general public and who cannot accept or relate to the next generation of consumers. Because the by-product of this attitude is a self-empowering bias toward change. And, as we all know, change fuels growth in any industry.

By launching Wine X Magazine, we knew we were shaking the foundation of privilege, and that our temblor would ultimately define the line between snobs and more enlightened wine drinkers. It has. I guess I just find it unfortunate that an industry, which desperately needs an infusion of new blood, has to rely on self-important, antiquated writers whose lifeless veins have been bled dry by sheer ignorance.

Wine X isn't the only wine magazine out there. We don't want to be the only one. Our objective is simply to balance out the current selection of wine publications targeting older, more affluent wine consumers -- to give our generation a place to go, a forum to feel comfortable in, and graphically hip editorials that reflect our attitudes and lifestyle, not our parents'. Our objective is simply to give people a choice. And if this innocent objective offends anyone -- especially anyone related to the wine industry -- then God help you. 'Cause Lord knows my generation won't.

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