According to the dictionary, “goop” is defined as being a sloppy or sticky semi-fluid matter and is typically something unpleasant.
It is perhaps the perfect name, therefore, for the pseudoscience website Gywenth Paltrow has lent her name to for the past decade. They’ve touted everything from a psychic vampire repellent to jade eggs for your vagina to a “cucumber cleanse”. No, you don’t want to click that.
But in an interview with the New York Times, Paltrow revealed some tidbits about the company’s history, and also tried to defend some of its more controversial moments. Also, apparently the company is worth $250 million. What the hell, people.
She discussed how Goop partnered with Condé Nast to create a magazine, before splitting amicably. Goop apparently wanted the magazine to be an extension of their website, a promotional publication, rather than a piece of editorial brilliance per se.
But one of the big sticking points is that Condé Nast apparently wanted Goop to fact check its bogus claims. Goop, meanwhile, wanted its “doctors and healers” to continue going unchallenged, like on their website, although they have never been far from criticism elsewhere. The partnership with Condé Nast ended after two issues.
“We’re never making statements,” said Paltrow. “We realized we could just do a better job of it ourselves in-house. I think for us it was really like we like to work where we are in an expansive space. “
Paltrow did say they were making some changes to the site though, hiring a lawyer to vet claims, an actual doctor in nutritional science, and a director of science and research. In September, they also plan to hire a fact-checker, which Paltrow said was a “necessary growing pain”. Will it actually change anything? Hmm.
Last year the company caused a huge row when it attempted to discredit Dr Jennifer Gunter, a regular critic of the website’s claims. And earlier this year, they appeared to encourage eating a dangerously low amount of food in order to get thin.
Goop, sadly, is not going anywhere. According to the article it gets 2.4 million unique visitors to its website a month, and has several hundred thousand listeners to a regular podcast it runs. Maybe, just maybe, its viewers might question its practices a bit more going forward. But don’t hold your jade egg.