I really like America's Test Kitchen. My Mom got Do a subscription to their magazine, Cook's Illustrated. He adores it and cooks out of it all the time. In fact, yesterday he picked up an America's Test Kitchen product at the grocery store, and I'm planning on making an America's Test Kitchen recipe tomorrow night.
America's Test Kitchen is one of the only foodie magazines out there that doesn't offer free access to their recipes online. This makes sense, as they are much smaller than Gourmet or Bon Appetit, and need the $ much more than the free publicity.
When blogging about their recipes in the past, this website has tried to a) link to a free copy of the recipes at the America's Test Kitchen website, b) link to a verbatum copy of the original recipe on someone else's blog, or c) post only recipes of our creations that were inspired by an America's Test Kitchen recipe, such as here. We felt comfortable with this, because we were not giving out their copyrighted recipe but we were still giving them the free, positive publicity that they deserved.
Then fellow foodie blogger Melissa had this extremely off-putting run-in with America's Test Kitchen's PR firm, Deborah Broide Publicity.
America's Test Kitchen, the food blog world is your friend. We are a fount of free publicity, we laud you, we encourage others to check out your products. If you don't want us to post your copyrighted recipes without permission, that's legit. But we are real people with real kitchens -- it's absurd to think that you can prevent us from modifying your recipes. America's Test Kitchen, please don't force this fight. At best, you'll encourage a lot of food bloggers to steer clear of America's Test Kitchen all together. At worst, you'll get a backlash of angry bloggers and you'll lose a lot of customers, and you won't gain anything anyway since we'll still blog about what we're cooking. America's Test Kitchen, let's be friends. Don't piss off the foodie blog world. It's a lose-lose idea.
And you may want to rethink your internet PR policies. Unless negative PR is your game plan.