Photo Credit: Courtesy of Shape Magazine
Is Shape magazine sending mixed messages about its LeAnn Rimes bikini cover story? On Thursday, the editor-in-chief of the magazine, Valerie Latona, sent an email to readers who were insulted by the story, saying that putting a "husband-stealer on a pedestal" was "a terrible mistake." However, Latona released another statement on Friday, saying that she was proud of the story and her comments had been taken out of context.
"I stand by the fact that LeAnn's story is compelling -- and her courage and strength in the face of so much adversity is compelling," said the editor on Friday. "The fact is a mere 40 readers out of almost 6 million readers wrote in to complain... I wrote to those women apologizing that our cover choice did not make them happy."
So, what does LeAnn Rimes make of Shape's two-faced apology? In a series of tweets this weekend, Rimes expressed her disappointment and confusion at the situation.
"Just so all my fans know, I'm getting to the bottom of this," Rimes tweeted after the story broke on Friday. "It's the first I've heard of this. Shape is throwing me a party next week as a thank you and a congrats for being on their cover for the 3rd time. I find this very contradictory. I love you all!!"
Later, she complained that she had been "bullied" by someone who was deliberately trying to hurt her.
"For one of those 40 people that 'complained' to take an email and blast it out to media twisting an editors words to try to hurt me is wrong," Rimes wrote. "Someone had an agenda. I call that a bully and the worst kind cause they can hide behind a computer screen once again. I'd much rather someone have the nerve to say it to my face."
On Saturday, Rimes tweeted that she was glad to have her "drama-filled day" behind her -- but the drama wasn't over yet, as she continued to post about it.
"It's a sticky situation I've been put in and I'm disappointed," the singer wrote later that day.
So who owes whom an apology here? The singer has acknowledged that she cheated on her ex-husband with current flame Eddie Cibrian, and spoke very candidly in the magazine about how wish she'd handled the situation better. The story didn't seem to be glorifying the idea of cheating on your husband; rather, it was about how Rimes used exercise to cope with her resulting depression. Rimes made a mistake, she dealt with it and moved on -- so does that really make her an unfit cover girl?
Forty people apparently thought so. But the editor obviously approved the story -- in fact, she'd already put Rimes on the cover twice before. So why did she send a message to angry readers, promising she would "do better next time"? Rimes is blaming the people who leaked the letter, but the fact is, the letter was misleading. And as any media-savvy magazine editor should know, you should never send an email saying something you don't want the whole world to hear.
We're sure the whole thing will blow over soon -- but we wonder if Rimes will show up to that party Shape is throwing her! We wouldn't be surprised if she suddenly remembers another pressing engagement ... like organizing her sock drawer.
What do you think about the Shape controversy over putting LeAnn Rimes on the cover? Chime in below!