Marie Claire Readers Protest “Fatties” Blog

By: J Sydnie Goodwin

Marie Claire

Marie Claire

A recent post by Marie Claire blogger, Maura Kelly, has outraged readers from across the country. The blog post, “Should ‘Fatties’ Get a Room? (Even on TV?),” describes Kelly’s feelings towards overweight people, and her disgust for them making out on television.

The blog was prompted by an episode of Mike & Molly on CBS, where the two overweight characters share a kiss on screen. “I think I’d be grossed out if I had to watch two characters with rolls and rolls of fat kissing each other…because I’d be grossed out if I had to watch them doing anything,” Kelly wrote.

Big mistake.

Within the last few days, the Marie Claire Facebook page has been blown up by hundreds of comments from readers who have cancelled their subscription, and many who have just “liked” the page in order to leave angry comments. The blog has also been the topic of popular talk shows, such as The Talk, where Sharon Osbourne weighs in on Kelly’s post.

The boycott of Marie Claire was then taken further, and a protest was organized to “make a statement that love has no weight limit”. On Friday, October 29, men and women were asked to gather outside of the Hearst Tower at 6 p.m. for the “Big Fat Kiss-in.” Around 20 people attended, while many sent their regrets that they couldn’t make it.

A Marie Claire spokesperson said, “The opinion was that of a blogger, not the magazine. She posted an apology the same day. We consider this matter closed.”

Kelly posted an apology and admitted to struggling with anorexia and having a fear of being overweight, but does that make what she wrote OK? How much leeway and opinion should a blogger be granted when writing for a big publication, as opposed to a personal blog?

Unfortunately the original blog post is no longer on the Marie Claire website, but the Facebook comments speak for themselves. Kelly has tainted the magazine, and I question whether it is possible for such a publication to recover. Is Marie Claire prominent enough to still have readers, or will this ultimately ruin them because of a bloggers “bigoted opinion”?


10 responses to “Marie Claire Readers Protest “Fatties” Blog

  1. First, I can’t believe that someone would say that. The comment was very rude and hurtful towards many people. It stereotyped overweight people as gross and incapable of finding love. While blogging for magazines creates a constant feed of new information and opinion generated for the readers, inserting strong personal beliefs or morals into a blog could backfire. Marie Claire has taken the brunt of the backlash, even if they did not actually endorse what the blogger was saying. Because she writes for Marie Claire, they are involved.
    Second, the writer’s past struggles with weight and anorexia does not excuse her from making those comments. She obviously still has a problem and needs to get help.

  2. I read the blog and I was so, so offended. I found that fact that the author so blatantly hated overweight people to be the worst part. It wasn’t her comments about the show that were offensive so much as her saying that she thinks an obese person walking across the room is disgusting and/or offensive.

    I do think that Marie Claire will bounce back from this, though. The magazine is very well known and I think that this will hurt them, but in the long run I don’t think that people will stop reading them. Marie Claire took to their blog almost immediately and accepted counterpoints to the offensive blog, and I think the fact that they’re at least addressing the issue will help them in the long run.

  3. In today’s world, people should know that any and everything they say and post on the internet can and will bite them in the butt. I agree with Emily on the fact that although Marie Claire may not support exactly what the blogger’s opinions were, it falls back on them because their name is known. Also, I agree that the writer’s past shouldn’t have any excuse for what she wrote. If anything she should know that people of all shapes and sizes are going to be sensitive to comments about their weight. So what if what she saw disgusted her, it doesn’t mean blabbing about it all over the internet is the right response. Obviously this writer still has a lot to learn.

  4. UPDATE!!!

    I have searched all over, and have finally found the original article as well as the apology issued by Maura Kelly.

    See it for yourself!

  5. Eduardo Tamez Zamarripa

    Of course that the remarks from Kelly are rude and obscene and incredibly offensive to a large majority of Americans (needless to say that America is the “fattest” country in the world). At the same time, as journalists we have to “support” her claims because the first amendment allows Kelly to make those comments freely. I’m not saying I condone her blog post, I’m saying that it is her right to express what she feels. The fact is this was only a blog. There are billions of blogs out there and it would have been much worse if this was an actual magazine article. The fact that Kelly battled anorexia and issued an apology really calms down the issue in my opinion. Her offensive remarks had to do with physical preference and that’s a distinction that should be made in this issue. Kelly apologized, she had a lapse of judgment, and she was within her right to express her opinion even though she may have cost Marie Claire a lot of customers. That’s a risk you take with your bloggers.

  6. Although what that woman said is disgusting, I ultimately believe that the publication will survive. I think they have a big enough name that a mini-meltdown like this won’t force the magazine to fold. I just can’t see where someone would think that was okay to write – she has a responsibility to her employer no matter what. Did she get fired?

  7. I agree with Kristin. Although I don’t condone the woman’s words, the magazine will be fine. I’m sure its PR team is going crazy pitching ideas to cover up the ‘mistake.’ However, I don’t believe they handled the situation correctly. Just because she is a blogger doesn’t mean she bears no connection to the magazine. The blog is part of the magazine, so is the blogger. Her comments were uncalled for and ignorant. The editors should have foreseen this backlash. What were they thinking? Why didn’t they care?

  8. I think people will realize that it was just a blogger who said this–not the magazine as a whole. The publication is a big name, and people will get over it. It was obviously a mistake, that she probably shouldn’t have posted, but things like this happen all the time in the publication world. Publications will usually always have upset readers who get offended by writers’ works. I think this will pass after a matter of time, but maybe the blogger should have posted this on her personal blog instead of the publication’s blog. She IS representing the magazine.

  9. I agree–the magazine will probably survive, for now. But in the meantime all those that dropped their subscription will probably pick up Glamour or LHJ or some other competitor.

  10. Megan Bannister

    When I first heard about this blog post I was disgusted. Not only does Kelly admit to never even having seen the show (“Mike and Molly”) in question but her blatant disregard for the wider populace that may be the target of the magazine she is representing. Granted, her statement does not represent the opinions of Marie Clare as a whole but I think that her “personal preferences” have their own place and time, especially when she is poorly informed about the CBS program she is referring to and the personal struggles of her potentially overweight readers. In the long run though, I don’t think that this will cause Marie Clare to go out of production or lose an outrageous amount of subscribers.

    And, in response to Kristin, yes, I’m pretty sure she was fired.

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