If you haven't been following along at home, folks, the nice people at Truck Trend (owned by our good friends at Motor Trend) somehow managed to break the Hummer H3T today, about a week early. How could this happen? Motor Trend, as has been explained to us, doesn't purposefully break embargoes, and they get testy when you suggest that they do. As we've explained about media embargoes before, automakers like press, and when they want their cars in certain publications they send "embargoed" information to publishers early to accommodate the supposed lead time the print media needs to rewrite press releases and layout photos. Therefore, Truck Trend has had the information on the 2009 Hummer H3T for a little while. But they claim as long as they don't publish it online, they're not breaking an embargo until it goes to print. But then they also claim if the printing date is in line with the embargo date than all should be well. Fair enough — a couple of hours here, a day early there — no big whoop. That is unless they move the publish date up and send the issues out a week early, which is what Truck Trend apparently did with their most recent issue (see the photo above of a magazine vendor with the current issue of the magazine today, shot by Michael Levine of PickupTruck.com). Then it doesn't matter what the issue date is because anyone with access to a scanner or a digital camera can then take those photos and spread them all over the internet thus breaking the digital and print embargo simultaneously and screwing other publications and their readers who don't have the information yet. But of course, Motor Trend doesn't break embargoes. Surely, if they did purposefully break an embargo the entire world of automaker PR reps would stop sending information to Motor Trend. Clearly that's exactly what would happen.
Motor Trend's Editor-in-Chief Angus McKenzie explains to Matt Hardigree that he doesn't like it when you imply his staff breaks embargoes.