LONDON: Production of gay magazines has been hit by a refusal of firms that fold the magazines to do the work. They blame the print workers’ union for deciding not to handle the magazines, but a union boss told GN that the firms were “lying”.
A spokesman for Quorum magazine said that the magazine’s printers had been told by firms specialising in finishing – folding and stapling – magazines that the Society of Graphical and Allied Trades had sent a directive to its members telling them not to handle gay mags, along with many other magazines, including much pornography of a very explicit nature.
Quorum isn’t the only magazine to be hit by this ban by the firms.
Follow-Up magazine’s third issue is now three weeks late in publication.
Don Busby, who runs Follow-Up told Gay News: This is hitting me especially hard, as Follow-Up is still running at a loss without this sort of thing happening to make things worse. It’s having to exist on the money that comes in from Male International Nude.
“With things like that, the last thing I need is a hold-up in production of Follow-Up. It means that there’s no new money flowing into the magazine, and there won’t be for some time.”
Follow-Up was due for publication on November but it has had to be rescheduled for publication on November 21. Male International Nude, Don Busby’s other magazine, is not hit by the finishers’ war-of-nerves, because it has less pages and folding it is, therefore, not a specialist job.
The story that a directive had been sent to print workers was given to the magazines’ printers by, among other firms, Stewart Phillips, of Golden Square, Foldform of Blackfriars, Hatch Pinner, of Farringdon Road and Howgate of Triangle Road, London E8.
But Mr Joe Flynn, the general secretary of SOGAT told Gay News that: “Those firms are lying. There has been no such directive sent out. In fact, our members even work on International Times, which, I think, shows they’re not narrow-minded.”
The Managing Director of Hatch Pinner told Gay News: “We never refused to handle any magazine, we have never received a directive from SOGAT leaders.
“If the magazines’ publishers say we are refusing to handle the magazine, they are mistaken, that’s all I can say.”