National Geographic Delivers Mea Culpa: ‘For Decades Our Coverage Was Racist’

National Geographic magazine is speaking out, acknowledging in stark terms in its April issue that “for decades, our coverage was racist.”

“It hurts to share the appalling stories from the magazine’s past,” editor in chief Susan Goldberg wrote in an essay in the new issue. “But when we decided to devote our April magazine to the topic of race, we thought we should examine our own history before turning our reportorial gaze to others.”

Goldberg also noted, “I’m the tenth editor of National Geographic since its founding in 1888. I’m the first woman and the first Jewish person — a member of two groups that also once faced discrimination here.”

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The magazine employed historian John Edwin Mason to go through past issues with a critical eye.

“What Mason found in short was that until the 1970s National Geographic all but ignored people of color who lived in the United States, rarely acknowledging them beyond laborers or domestic workers,” Goldberg wrote. “Unlike magazines such as Life, Mason said, National Geographic did little to push its readers beyond the stereotypes ingrained in white American culture.”

Among the other transgressions Mason identified was a pattern of National Geographic images depicting native peoples in various locations gazing in wonder at Western technology — like cameras.

“It really creates this us-and-them dichotomy between the civilized and the uncivilized,” said Mason in the piece.

Our April issue is devoted to exploring race—how it defines, separates and unites us. Read the story behind the cover: https://t.co/PPTVg3UpM8 pic.twitter.com/5kunxfDrHt

— National Geographic (@NatGeo) March 12, 2018

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National Geographic magazine is speaking out, acknowledging in stark terms in its April issue that “for decades, our coverage was racist.”

“It hurts to share the appalling stories from the magazine’s past,” editor in chief Susan Goldberg wrote in an essay in the new issue. “But when we decided to devote our April magazine to the topic of race, we thought we should examine our own history before turning our reportorial gaze to others.”

Goldberg also noted, “I’m the tenth editor of National Geographic since its founding in 1888. I’m the first woman and the first Jewish person — a member of two groups that also once faced discrimination here.”

The magazine employed historian John Edwin Mason to go through past issues with a critical eye.

“What Mason found in short was that until the 1970s National Geographic all but ignored people of color who lived in the United States, rarely acknowledging them beyond laborers or domestic workers,” Goldberg wrote. “Unlike magazines such as Life, Mason said, National Geographic did little to push its readers beyond the stereotypes ingrained in white American culture.”

Among the other transgressions Mason identified was a pattern of National Geographic images depicting native peoples in various locations gazing in wonder at Western technology — like cameras.

“It really creates this us-and-them dichotomy between the civilized and the uncivilized,” said Mason in the piece.

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David Oyelowo's 'The Black 22s' Gets Pilot Order From National Geographic

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Darren Aronofsky to Shoot Series in Space for National Geographic Channel

‘Genius: Picasso’: Tracee Chimo Joins Nat Geo Anthology Series

Tracee Chimo (Private Life) is set for a recurring role in Nat Geo’s Genius: Picasso anthology series starring Antonio Banderas.
The 10-part second season of the Emmy-nominated global event series from Fox 21 Television Studios will chronicle the life and work of the Spanish painter, one of the 20th century’s most influential and celebrated artists. It explores how the Spanish-born artist’s passionate nature and relentless creative drive were inextricably linked to his…

Tracee Chimo (Private Life) is set for a recurring role in Nat Geo’s Genius: Picasso anthology series starring Antonio Banderas. The 10-part second season of the Emmy-nominated global event series from Fox 21 Television Studios will chronicle the life and work of the Spanish painter, one of the 20th century's most influential and celebrated artists. It explores how the Spanish-born artist's passionate nature and relentless creative drive were inextricably linked to his…

Gary E Knell to Succeed Declan Moore as Nat Geo Partners CEO

Nat Geo Partners CEO Declan Moore is being replaced by Gary E. Knell, the board announced Friday.

Knell, who has served as president and CEO of the National Geographic Society since 2014, will succeed Moore effective March 1. Moore has held the role since Nat Geo Partners’, a joint venture between 21st Century Fox and the Nat Geo Society, formation 2015.

“I’m grateful for the 23 years I’ve dedicated to this extraordinary organization, and am so proud of the teams, the businesses and the brands that we have developed and nurtured in that time. It’s been immensely rewarding working so closely with Peter and Gary and am happy to be leaving NGP in their extremely capable hands,” Moore said in a statement. “I know that the work we’ve done to scale and modernize National Geographic Partners has positioned the brand for tremendous future success.”

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Moore led the integration of the organization’s consumer-facing assets into 21st Century Fox as part of the two companies’ expanded joint venture. Under Moore, Nat Geo grew its global television footprint to 450 million homes and expanded its digital infrastructure and cross-platform storytelling, as well as social media presence, and carried a record number of travelers on Nat Geo Expeditions.

“Declan has been a tremendous champion of National Geographic, and his steady leadership in the founding of National Geographic Partners has created a foundation for it to thrive as one of the world’s most iconic media brands for years to come,” Peter Rice, president of 21st Century Fox, said. “Gary is ideally situated to build on that momentum. Nobody understands National Geographic better than Gary, and his breadth of media experience, strategic mindset and global perspective make him the perfect leader of the organization at this exciting time of transformation.”

Moore began his career at National Geographic in 1995 and has previously served as president of publishing and travel and Chief Media Officer.

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“I’m thrilled to build on the enormous momentum that’s already been generated by Declan and his team at National Geographic Partners, and to continue to leverage National Geographic’s full portfolio of amazing assets to drive positive change through the best in science, exploration and storytelling,” Knell added. “At the Society, we’ve succeeded in developing an impact-driven agenda for the most pressing issues facing the planet, and are well positioned to continue to execute on that ambition thanks to the fantastic leadership team we’ve put in place.”

Knell will now oversee all of Nat Geo’s global storytelling assets, including the television, magazine, print and digital operations, licensing and travel expeditions.

As the head of the Society, Knell focused on nonprofit and educational activities globally and oversaw the organization’s print and digital platforms, travel and consumer products, until the formation of Nat Geo Partners. He currently serves as chairman of National Geo Partners, and has also held various board positions at the parent organization since 2003.

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Knell was previously the president and CEO of National Public Radio and held executive roles at Sesame Workshop and Manager Media International and served as counsel to the U.S. Senate Judiciary and Governmental Affairs Committees in Washington, D.C., and worked in the California State Legislature and Governor’s Office.

“I have tremendous respect for Gary’s outstanding leadership,” Jean Case, Nat Geo Society board of trustees chairman and Nat Geo Partners board member, said. “His passionate commitment to science, exploration and storytelling – combined with his deep expertise in media and his love of the National Geographic brand – makes him ideally suited to lead National Geographic Partners to its next level of success. I also want to express my gratitude to Declan for his extensive contributions to National Geographic Partners and Society.”

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Nat Geo Partners CEO Declan Moore is being replaced by Gary E. Knell, the board announced Friday.

Knell, who has served as president and CEO of the National Geographic Society since 2014, will succeed Moore effective March 1. Moore has held the role since Nat Geo Partners’, a joint venture between 21st Century Fox and the Nat Geo Society, formation 2015.

“I’m grateful for the 23 years I’ve dedicated to this extraordinary organization, and am so proud of the teams, the businesses and the brands that we have developed and nurtured in that time. It’s been immensely rewarding working so closely with Peter and Gary and am happy to be leaving NGP in their extremely capable hands,” Moore said in a statement. “I know that the work we’ve done to scale and modernize National Geographic Partners has positioned the brand for tremendous future success.”

Moore led the integration of the organization’s consumer-facing assets into 21st Century Fox as part of the two companies’ expanded joint venture. Under Moore, Nat Geo grew its global television footprint to 450 million homes and expanded its digital infrastructure and cross-platform storytelling, as well as social media presence, and carried a record number of travelers on Nat Geo Expeditions.

“Declan has been a tremendous champion of National Geographic, and his steady leadership in the founding of National Geographic Partners has created a foundation for it to thrive as one of the world’s most iconic media brands for years to come,” Peter Rice, president of 21st Century Fox, said. “Gary is ideally situated to build on that momentum. Nobody understands National Geographic better than Gary, and his breadth of media experience, strategic mindset and global perspective make him the perfect leader of the organization at this exciting time of transformation.”

Moore began his career at National Geographic in 1995 and has previously served as president of publishing and travel and Chief Media Officer.

“I’m thrilled to build on the enormous momentum that’s already been generated by Declan and his team at National Geographic Partners, and to continue to leverage National Geographic’s full portfolio of amazing assets to drive positive change through the best in science, exploration and storytelling,” Knell added. “At the Society, we’ve succeeded in developing an impact-driven agenda for the most pressing issues facing the planet, and are well positioned to continue to execute on that ambition thanks to the fantastic leadership team we’ve put in place.”

Knell will now oversee all of Nat Geo’s global storytelling assets, including the television, magazine, print and digital operations, licensing and travel expeditions.

As the head of the Society, Knell focused on nonprofit and educational activities globally and oversaw the organization’s print and digital platforms, travel and consumer products, until the formation of Nat Geo Partners. He currently serves as chairman of National Geo Partners, and has also held various board positions at the parent organization since 2003.

Knell was previously the president and CEO of National Public Radio and held executive roles at Sesame Workshop and Manager Media International and served as counsel to the U.S. Senate Judiciary and Governmental Affairs Committees in Washington, D.C., and worked in the California State Legislature and Governor’s Office.

“I have tremendous respect for Gary’s outstanding leadership,” Jean Case, Nat Geo Society board of trustees chairman and Nat Geo Partners board member, said. “His passionate commitment to science, exploration and storytelling – combined with his deep expertise in media and his love of the National Geographic brand – makes him ideally suited to lead National Geographic Partners to its next level of success. I also want to express my gratitude to Declan for his extensive contributions to National Geographic Partners and Society.”

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Nat Geo Heads To The Olympics For ‘Inside North Korea: Live From the Games’

EXCLUSIVE: National Geographic is going to the Olympic Games in Pyeongchang — but they won’t be there to watch figure skating. With correspondent and host Bob Woodruff, Nat Geo will explore North Korea’s diplomatic legacy through the lens of the Olympics in Inside North Korea: Live from the GamesThe hourlong special will premiere at 9 PM/8 PM CST on Sunday, Feb. 11.
The Pyeongchang Games will be a stone’s throw away from the Demilitarized Zone (50 miles to be specific)…

EXCLUSIVE: National Geographic is going to the Olympic Games in Pyeongchang — but they won’t be there to watch figure skating. With correspondent and host Bob Woodruff, Nat Geo will explore North Korea’s diplomatic legacy through the lens of the Olympics in Inside North Korea: Live from the GamesThe hourlong special will premiere at 9 PM/8 PM CST on Sunday, Feb. 11. The Pyeongchang Games will be a stone’s throw away from the Demilitarized Zone (50 miles to be specific)…

Vice & National Geographic Team On Latin America Series

National Geographic Partners and Vice Media are teaming on Explorer (working title) a multi-platform series that looks at contemporary issues that affect the lives of people living in Latin America. Shooting is expected to begin this year in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico.
With the contribution of National Geographic Explorers, Vice will produce the 14-part series, with different hosts traveling the continent to uncover what is behind the pollution in Mexico City…

National Geographic Partners and Vice Media are teaming on Explorer (working title) a multi-platform series that looks at contemporary issues that affect the lives of people living in Latin America. Shooting is expected to begin this year in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico. With the contribution of National Geographic Explorers, Vice will produce the 14-part series, with different hosts traveling the continent to uncover what is behind the pollution in Mexico City…

Nat Geo TV Goes Shopping for Movies, Docu Series at NATPE

National Geographic Channels is heading to NATPE with a shopping list. The cable group is sending a small team to Miami this week for the Jan. 16-18 National Association of Television Program Executives conference in a search for movies and docu-series content. The goal is to find films based on true stories and documentary-style content […]

National Geographic Channels is heading to NATPE with a shopping list. The cable group is sending a small team to Miami this week for the Jan. 16-18 National Association of Television Program Executives conference in a search for movies and docu-series content. The goal is to find films based on true stories and documentary-style content […]

National Geographic Is Bringing Meryl Sheep, Mahershallama Ali, and More Wild Animals to the Oscars — Watch

Just don’t ask them who they’re wearing.

Meryl Sheep, Mahershallama Ali, Jimmy Kibble, Cobra Winfrey, and Bunnifer Lawrence aren’t exactly household names, but they’ll soon be getting their moment in the sun all the same. “Nat Geo WILD from the Red Carpet” is celebrating the Academy Awards with those cleverly named animals

“One of my favorite actresses, ViOWLa Davis, gave me a heads-up that this year’s red carpet is going to be the ‘hoo’s hoo’ of the animal kingdom, so I’m looking forward to chatting with these A-listers,” said Ross Mathews, who’s co-hosting the event alongside Sarina Morales. “It’s been a wild year in Hollywood, so viewers can expect ferocious fashions and celebrity surprises. Get the popcorn ready, because this year’s red carpet is going to be a total zoo!”

The festivities begin at 4 p.m. PST on March 4, AKA Oscar Sunday.