We’ve been through this before. When New Scientist ran their misleading “Darwin was wrong” cover, we hammered at them and pointed out that they were doing us no favors — they were giving ammunition to creationists who would never read the contents, but would wave that cover at school board meetings. And they did. We chastised the editor, Roger Highfield, and we had the impression that he was penitent, but it turns out we were completely wrong.
New Scientist is now using that same cover again in their promotional material to flog magazines. Yes, that is their business, to sell magazines…but this represents a declaration that they think their market is the ignorant creationist segment of wanna-be pretend scientists. That’s a real shame.
Jerry Coyne calls for a boycott. I have to agree. If they don’t want fans of real science to read their magazine, then we won’t. I also won’t hesitate to tell young people interested in science that they shouldn’t waste their time with New Scientist — pick up Seed instead, or even Discover, if you’re a bit déclassé. But sorry, NS is joining the Weekly World News as yet another rag pandering to the gullible.