The editor-in-chief of GQ magazine has warned the media industry not to be cowed by the fear of losing readers by pursuing a Me Too agenda.
British author and journalist Dylan Jones said publishing stories that were “more sophisticated, more upmarket or more tolerant” did not risk alienating customers.
The 59-year-old, who is celebrating 20 years at the helm of the monthly publication, said GQ had been at the forefront of the recent push for equality.
He told the Press Association: “I think you only have to look at GQ to see that we not only reflect what’s going on in society but, as regards Me Too and Time’s Up, we were actually ahead of the curve.
“I’ve always maintained that you never lose market share by becoming more sophisticated, more upmarket or more tolerant.”
He also encouraged the industry to buck the trend towards offering news free of charge, instead challenging his contemporaries to make readers pay for “every last piece of content”.
He said: “So many media companies are stripping back on the quality of their content, devaluing the very idea of journalism.
“Everyone is running scared of delivery systems, while what they should be doing is building paywalls and making consumers pay for every last piece of content.”
Jones has written biographies of stars including The Doors frontman Jim Morrison and David Bowie.
The magazine is hosting a GQ Heroes event to celebrate “the innovator, the CEO, the disrupter and the influencer”.
Speakers will include comedian Ricky Gervais, artist Tracey Emin, designer Paul Smith, business tycoon Sir Richard Branson, writer Michael Wolff and model Adwoa Aboah, as well as GQ columnist and interviewer Alastair Campbell.
Jones said: “This is our twist on the luxury conference, and will feature other verticals such as entertainment, mental health, art, retail, media and politics.”
The event will take place from Wednesday May 8 to Friday May 10 at Soho Farmhouse, Oxfordshire.