From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: Criticism
"One major criticism of Rolling Stone involves its generational bias toward the 1960s and 1970s. One critic referred to the Rolling Stone list of the "99 Greatest Songs" as an example of "unrepentant rockist fogeyism". In further response to this issue, rock critic Jim DeRogatis, a former Rolling Stone editor, published a thorough critique of the magazine's lists in a book called Kill Your Idols: A New Generation of Rock Writers Reconsiders the Classics (ISBN 1-56980-276-9), which featured differing opinions from many younger critics.
Rolling Stone magazine has been criticized for reconsidering many classic albums that it had previously dismissed, and for frequent use of the 3.5 star rating. For example, Led Zeppelin was largely written off by Rolling Stone magazine critics during the band's most active years in the 1970s. However by 2006, a cover story on Led Zeppelin honored them as "the Heaviest Band of All Time". A critic for Slate magazine described a conference at which 1984's The Rolling Stone Record Guide was scrutinized. As he described it, "The guide virtually ignored hip-hop and ruthlessly panned heavy metal, the two genres that within a few years would dominate the pop charts. In an auditorium packed with music journalists, you could detect more than a few anxious titters: How many of us will want our record reviews read back to us 20 years hence?"
The hiring of former FHM editor Ed Needham further enraged critics who alleged that Rolling Stone had lost its credibility.
The 2003 Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Guitarists of all Time article's inclusion of only two female musicians resulted in Venus Zine answering with their own list entitled, "The Greatest Female Guitarists of All Time".
Conservative columnist Jonah Goldberg stated that Rolling Stone had "essentially become the house organ of the Democratic National Committee." Rolling Stone editor Jann Wenner has made all of his political donations to Democrats.
Rolling Stone's film critic, Peter Travers has been criticized for his high number of repetitively used blurbs.
The August 2013 Rolling Stone cover featuring alleged Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev drew widespread criticism that the magazine was "glamorizing terrorism" and that the cover was a "slap in the face to the great city of Boston." The online edition of the article was accompanied by a short editorial which stated that the story "falls within the traditions of journalism and Rolling Stone's long-standing commitment to serious and thoughtful coverage of the most important political and cultural issues of our day." The controversial cover photograph which was used by Rolling Stone had previously featured on the front page of the New York Times on May 5, 2013.
In response to the outcry, New England-based CVS Pharmacy and Tedeschi Food Shops banned their stores from carrying the issue. Also refusing to sell the issue were Walgreens, Rite-Aid, Roche Bros., Kmart, H-E-B, Walmart, 7-Eleven, Hy-Vee, Rutter's Farm, United Supermarkets, Cumberland Farms, Market Basket, Shaw's and Stop & Shop. Boston mayor Thomas Menino sent a letter to Rolling Stone publisher Jann Wenner, calling the cover "ill conceived, at best,...reaffirms a message that destruction gains fame for killers and their 'causes.'" Menino also wrote that "To respond to you in anger is to feed into your obvious market strategy" and wrote about how Wenner could have written about the survivors or the people who came to help after the bombings. In conclusion, Menino writes "The survivors of the Boston Marathon deserve Rolling Stone cover stories, though I no longer feel that Rolling Stone deserves them."
UVA rape story
Main article: A Rape on Campus
On December 5, 2014, Managing Editor Will Dana apologized for a story that was run about an alleged gang rape in the University of Virginia's campus. Separate inquiries by both Phi Kappa Psi, the fraternity accused by Rolling Stone of facilitating the rape, and The Washington Post revealed major errors and discrepancies in the report. Reporter Sabrina Erdely's story was subject to intense media criticism. The Washington Post and Boston Herald both issued calls for magazine staff involved in the report to be fired. Rolling Stone subsequently issued three apologies for the story. Some have suggested legal action against the magazine by persons accused of the rape may result.
Rolling Stone commissioned an outside investigation of the story and its problems by the Dean of the Columbia School of Journalism. The report uncovered complete journalistic failure in the UVA story and institutional problems with reporting at Rolling Stone. Rolling Stone retracted the story on April 5, 2015. "