A rant. I don’t rant often, but I’m driven to do it today.
As a wine writer, I’m alarmed by the recent trend for other wine writers to behave parasitically by charging wineries to reproduce reviews.
I’m not going to name names, but it’s morally questionable, and I think wineries shouldn’t put up with it.
If I am hosted by a winery, who take the time to show me around, and go to the expense of opening bottles for me, or send me samples, it’s only right that they should freely be able to quote my reviews or comments and use these to help sell their wines.
For a writer to accept press trips or to be received by a winery, or to taste samples, or to attend a tasting where a producer has spent money on flights/wines/table fees, and then to turn round and charge the winery a professional fee if they want to use your review in promoting their wine is quite wrong, in my opinion.
Making a living from making wine is tough enough without the parasitical drain from media organizations who are either greedy, or who can’t make enough money from their core activity. It’s bad enough to see all these events where producers are being charged £££ for a table, and then the punters are also being charged to attend, but this pay-to-quote nonsense is just the worst.
The best writers don’t get involved with this sort of practice.