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Old 31st August 2006, 18:08   #1
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Question Information in Auto Magazines

Information, when published, is expected to be true and correct. Be it whatever. An information source is where people look into to gain knowledge and understanding of certain aspects. Information can be readily available (internet) or you may pay a price for it (newspapers, magazines).

People go to their local vendor and pick up a magazine or newspaper considering whatever written inside is reliable and dependable. We BHPians normally put our money in auto magazines. And since we are more concerned about the Indian Automotive Industry and its products, we generally pick Indian car magazines.

So you've got your latest issue and are all set to read it. Maybe for entertainment, for knowledge, for clearing doubts and concepts, for latest reviews, to decide on a new car or bike, to know whats the best accessory, best products to keep you safe or the best stuff for your car to perform better.

Consider you want to buy a new car. You read through the different comparison tests. You find out that A is better than B and C. The magazine claims that A gives great experience overall and there is absolutely no hindrances you'd face with that car. You book the car, its delivered to you, and eventually you curse the magazine. It didn't turn out to be what the magazine claimed.

Look into that magazine again and you may notice that all through the magazine you'll find a lot of pages that reveal the car's advertisments. If you ponder a little more, and put two and two together, you'll know that the magazine was paid enough to write a biased comparison review.

Recently, I read an article of the "Top 10 Indian Cars" in their category. The article was sponsored by a Tyre Manufacturer. The article included a subsection stating which are the best tyres for these top 10 cars and not surprisingly, all the tyres were of the manufacturer that sponsored the article.

Is this right? One can argue that since the manufacturers are providing sponsorship, they deserve positive reviews in the corresponding magazine. If not, they simply wouldn't provide funds.

But, there are magazines who get advertisment offers from major companies whose cars may have not been given preference against its rivals in comparison reviews. This is because the magazine prefers to be unbiased no matter what.

Share your experiences and views.
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Old 31st August 2006, 18:36   #2
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Totally agree with you... If these mags start giving such kind of biased reviews then for what purpose are they there... Even AUTOCAR has done it (at least it looks like on the face of it) Check this:
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/indian...k-records.html (Ford Fiesta enters Limca Book of Records!!)
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/281204-post12.html

Last edited by ess_a : 31st August 2006 at 18:37.
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Old 31st August 2006, 19:25   #3
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i guess advertising is the main funding some of the magazines get so they have to please the sponsors occationally to keep the funding comming but that doesnt mean that the sponsors' product should come out on top every time.
if you notice in most magazines cars are never labeled as total flops, even in comparos the loosing car is never put down hard. they say it was a very close call between the winner and the runner-ups just to keep the advertisers happy and to keep their funding. sometimes the car of the year of certain magasines are influenced by these to an extent. without the money they cannot put out as much content . usually i buy magazines just for entertainment. for everything else there is Team-BHP.
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Old 1st September 2006, 06:51   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by heelntoe
usually i buy magazines just for entertainment. for everything else there is Team-BHP.
This is best said!

I really hate the comments made for some car manufacturers by some car magazines. They really suck!! It's like telling look, the sky is green! And then bringing in all the hoopla evidence to back the claim!

Even the auto awards these magazines declair seems to be biased. But luckily now we have ICOTY which will atleast have some truth in it. (unless some car manufacturer sponsors all the magazines together)!!!!

Guyz! I buy auto magazines for the above said reason and for pics!!
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Old 1st September 2006, 09:30   #5
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Seems identical to the discussion in

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/indian...nsistency.html (Shouldnt Magazines maintain test data consistency ?)

May be the threads should be merged
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Old 17th September 2006, 19:00   #6
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Thumbs up To Gordon,

I do agree with Gordan that many of the magazines do have biased reviews over certain manufacturers and products.

But I would like to bring it to Gordon's notice, that the article that he has mentioned about the "TOP 10 Cars" and the best tyres; the magazine hasn't said that the Apollo Tyres are the best for the 10 cars featured. What the magazine says is,

"This is the range of World Class Apollo tyres for the Best TOP 10 Indian cars chosen."

If you carefully read the article, the headline itself states that- "World Class range of Apollo tyres for India's Best TOP 10 Cars."

All I would like to say is, such hap-hazard conclusions and judgements will give rise to more and more controversies and conflicts for no reason and most of us itself will be the brunt-bearers.

It does happen with majority of the magazines all over and is absolutely not ethical. No doubt we should raise our voice against it. But we should be carefull and thoroughly knowledged about it when we do so.
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Old 17th September 2006, 19:18   #7
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Default To Gordon,

I do agree with Gordon that many of the auto-magazines do have biased views about certain manufacturers and products. They maybe for advertising or money or whatever reasons. It is absolutely unethical on thier behalf to spread wrong information and promote such malpractices.

But I would like to bring it to Gordon's notice that the example that he has given regarding the TOP 10 cars, it doesnt say so. What the article claims is thus,

"This is the world class range of tyres on offer from Apollo Tyres for India's Best TOP 10 cars."

It doesn't say anywhere that these are the best tyres for all the Ten cars. If the manufacturer is paying the magazine just to advertise their product, what is wrong in it? The magazine dosn't claim anything in that article. It just announces the launch of World Class tyres from a manufacturer and thier available range for those TOP 10 cars chosen. I don't see any kind of biased review in that article. Its pure advertising.

I do not say that such things don't take place. They definately do. But we should be carefull and thoroughly knowledged before pointing the finger, because that will lead to a lot of controversies and conflicts for no reason and we itself will be the brunt-bearers for it.

No harsh feeling against anyone, just wanted to put the light on the right and the wrong.
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Old 17th September 2006, 22:15   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gordon
Recently, I read an article of the "Top 10 Indian Cars" in their category. The article was sponsored by a Tyre Manufacturer. The article included a subsection stating which are the best tyres for these top 10 cars and not surprisingly, all the tyres were of the manufacturer that sponsored the article.
Gordon, please go thru the CAR INDIA Aug Issue magazine (the one u r hinting at) and read the line again.. no where does it say that the best tyres for all the ten cars are Apollos. The lines jus says which Apollo tyre is suited to each of the top ten cars. I also request you to edit your site (http://www.geocities.com/autofcs/articles/14/am.html) too as it too has the same post as posted here.

MODS : I request you to kindly edit the post as it gives a false picture of the real thing. Thanks
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Old 18th September 2006, 08:16   #9
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Autocar focusses on a new is best policy - a correlation is that the new model also has the max advertisments!

CAR normally are brutal in their opinions and people respect that hence only the manufacturers of real driving machines bother to advertise. CAR India is another kettle of fish - actually praising the Rhino and some other dire cars

The other aspect is that the reporters keep the manufacturers happy in order to get invited on the usual junket.

Also sponsorship takes a unilateral stance - no one has ever done a tyre comparison do to sponsorship issues

Until there is a solid critical mass of manufacturers and authoritative reporting this iswhat we will continue to see.
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