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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

More Gay-Friendly Franchises Join

The incredible diversity of franchise concepts that are profiled in the directory mirror the diversity of our community. After accumulating over 60 concepts, we have signed on 8 more within the past month.

Typically, the franchise industry does well during an economic downturn as many who have been laid off are looking for something different and have more control over their destinies. For the GLBT communty, your search to find an equality-minded franchise is now available. We've also just added a new search page according to "Initial Investment."

Check out who just joined:

VR Business Brokers
Premier Sponsor
vrbb VR Business Broker's industry is an exciting and challenging one with many opportunities for driven entrepreneurs. VR intermediaries sell a wide range of businesses across the country and around the globe. If you are driven toward success with an entrepreneurial spirit and are excited about the prospect of selling businesses and putting deals together our business is one to seriously consider.

Max Muscle Sports Nutrition
Premier Sponsor
maxmuscleMax Muscle Sports Nutrition is America's most dynamic sports nutrition franchise, offering qualified people the opportunity to own and operate their own business in the growing health and fitness market. We offer business opportunities from Single- or Multi-Unit Store Ownership to our Regional Director program, all of which give franchisees the opportunity to make their passion their profession.
carepatrolCarePatrol assists families in locating Assisted Living and In-Home Care Options in their area. We help you create your network of healthcare providers and every time one of your clients uses one of their services, you get a handsome commission.

If you always wanted to be in the Senior Care Franchise industry but didn't want to deal with hiring caregivers and dealing with all the drama that goes with that, this could be the franchise opportunity for you.
Camp Bow Wow
campbowwowCamp Bow Wow® has grown into the country's premier dog day care and boarding establishment with over 90 current locations and another 115 Camps under development in the U.S. and Canada. While maintaining a mom-and-pop feel, we have advanced and standardized our concept into the most sophisticated doggy day care and overnight operation in the country. Utilizing technology, state-of-the-art facility design, and intensive employee training, Camp Bow Wows® are operationally the best run and safest environments for dogs to play, romp, and receive lots of love and attention.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Suze Orman Accepts Her GLAAD Media Award

March 29, 2008 – Vanessa Williams, Stockard Channing, Cherry Jones, T.R. Knight, Keith Olbermann, Judith Light, Clay Aiken and S. Epatha Merkerson were among the celebrities who joined the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) as it honored Tyra Banks, Suze Orman, Phil Donahue and the best in film, television and journalism last night at the 20th Annual GLAAD Media Awards in New York.

Vito Russo Award
: Suze Orman (presented by T.R. Knight)

"I want every single one of you in this room to take note of what corporations put their time and money behind gays, behind lesbians – behind you," Orman said accepting her award. "Do you want to continue to give your money to people in corporations that oppress us, that keep us down? Or do you want to give your money to the corporations who can help us rise and change what needs to be changed in the United States of America today." Orman continued, "I ask you to honor those corporations not only with your support but with your money as well. We can do this - and here's how you're going to do it. You are going to think about every single penny you spend from this day forward. And the only think I ask of you is to spend it and invest it in those companies that invest in you."

Friday, March 27, 2009

Transgender Advocates React To HRC Statement On ENDA

This week, the Human Rights Campaign's Board of Directors released the following statement clarifying their position to support a fully inclusive ENDA (Employment Non-Discrimination Act).

It’s the policy of HRC that the organization will only support an inclusive ENDA. In 2007 House leadership informed us that there were insufficient votes to pass an inclusive bill, so they decided to vote on a sexual orientation only bill. We made a one time exception to our policy in 2007 because we strongly believed that supporting this vote would do more to advance inclusive legislation. We will not support such a strategy again. We look forward to Congress sending President Obama a fully inclusive ENDA for his signature.

Donna Rose, former HRC Business Council Member

As for HRC's "renewed" commitment to only a fully-inclusive ENDA I and many other trans-people have only two words: Prove it. We've all heard these exact same promises before only to see them broken when tested. As a board member I warned them that to reneg on their similar previous commiitment would be selling its soul for the sake of a symbolic victory. What has happened since? They've used their congressional scorecard to penalize supportive legislators whose standard for equality is higher than their own. They've done little to re-establish any sort of relationship with the broader transgender community. They've positioned themselves to take credit for achievements that are not theirs to own.
I happen to believe that how you achieve something is as important as achieving it at all. A supposed leader for human rights needs to set high standards. HRC has proven that they're good at making promises, but terrible at actually keeping them. Here we go again. In short - many of us consider this "new" promise not as some newfound commitment to broader community or higher ideals of equality for all, but as continued arrogance.

Jamison Green, former HRC Business Council Member

HRC only adopted a trans-inclusive stance on ENDA in 2004; prior to that, HRC opposed a trans-inclusive ENDA. It is heartening to know that HRC considers their 2007 stance an aberration and has made a commitment to themselves and to the community not to repeat that strategic error. By excluding gender-variant LGBT community members, HRC ignored the very principles of diversity and inclusion that we know make our organizations vital and strong. I look forward to HRC’s renewed participation in efforts to achieve equality for all.

Thursday, March 26, 2009


While responding to questions from journalists about my characterization of Justice Antonin Scalia as a homophobe, I realized that the fact that I made that comment in conjunction with a potential lawsuit about the Defense of Marriage Act created some confusion as to my basis for that characterization.

My view that Justice Scalia is prejudiced against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people is based, not on his position on marriage, but entirely on the angry minority opinions he wrote in two Supreme Court cases in which the majority held that gay and lesbian people had certain rights against discrimination regarding private consensual sex and political activity. In those two virulent dissents, Justice Scalia denounced the court majorities not simply for finding that it was unconstitutional to discriminate based on sexual orientation in cases involving political rights and the right to private consensual sex, but he also made it clear that in his view sex discrimination is not only permitted by the Constitution but is very much in society’s interest because homosexuality deserves to be treated with not only disapproval, but legal disability.

This comes out most clearly in his very vigorous abjection to the court’s decision to block a criminal prosecution against two men who had consensual sex in the privacy of their bedroom. And it is made very vivid in the passage in which he affirms society’s right to treat homosexuals unequally by citing other categories which deserves such treatment – beginning with murder.

It is of course possible for reasonable people to differ over what the Constitution requires in these cases. But the point is that Justice Scalia goes far beyond simply denying that there is a constitutional right here and makes clear his support for the discriminatory policies based on his condemnation of homosexuality. This is best illustrated by the contrast between his writing in the criminal sodomy case and that of Justice Thomas, who in disagreeing with his colleague’s view that the Constitution prohibits criminal prosecution for private consensual sex between adults, notes that he believes that the law in question is “remarkably silly” and notes that he would have voted against it if he was in a legislature. So while both Justice Thomas and Justice Scalia are in the minority upholding the right of criminal prosecution, Justice Thomas makes clear his disapproval of this as a matter of policy while Justice Scalia enthusiastically embraces it.

I have attached some of the relevant quotations from the two opinions.


[June 26, 2003]
No. 02—102


Lawrence vs. Thomas was a landmark US Supreme Court case in which the court struck down the sodomy law in Texas, which was specifically targeted against homosexuals. Justice Scalia authored the dissent, joined by Justices Rehnquist and Thomas.


One of the most revealing statements in today’s opinion is the Court’s grim warning that the criminalization of homosexual conduct is “an invitation to subject homosexual persons to discrimination both in the public and in the private spheres.” Ante, at 14. It is clear from this that the Court has taken sides in the culture war, departing from its role of assuring, as neutral observer, that the democratic rules of engagement are observed. Many Americans do not want persons who openly engage in homosexual conduct as partners in their business, as scoutmasters for their children, as teachers in their children’s schools, or as boarders in their home. They view this as protecting themselves and their families from a lifestyle that they believe to be immoral and destructive. The Court views it as “discrimination” which it is the function of our judgments to deter. So imbued is the Court with the law profession’s anti-anti-homosexual culture, that it is seemingly unaware that the attitudes of that culture are not obviously “mainstream”; that in most States what the Court calls “discrimination” against those who engage in homosexual acts is perfectly legal; that proposals to ban such “discrimination” under Title VII have repeatedly been rejected by Congress, see Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 1994, S. 2238, 103d Cong., 2d Sess. (1994); Civil Rights Amendments, H. R. 5452, 94th Cong., 1st Sess. (1975); that in some cases such “discrimination” is mandated by federal statute, see 10 U.S.C. § 654(b)(1) (mandating discharge from the armed forces of any service member who engages in or intends to engage in homosexual acts); and that in some cases such “discrimination” is a constitutional right, see Boy Scouts of America v. Dale, 530 U.S. 640 (2000).


on writ of certiorari to the Supreme Court of Colorado
[May 20, 1996]
In Romer v. Evans, the US Supreme Court ruled against an amendment to the Colorado state constitution which would have prevented municipal governments from taking action to protect homosexuals from discrimination. Justice Scalia wrote the dissent, with Justices Rehnquist and Thomas joining.


First, as to its eminent reasonableness. The Court's opinion contains grim, disapproving hints that Coloradans have been guilty of "animus" or "animosity" toward homosexuality, as though that has been established as un-American. Of course it is our moral heritage that one should not hate any human being or class of human beings. But I had thought that one could consider certain conduct reprehensible--murder, for example, or polygamy, or cruelty to animals--and could exhibit even "animus" toward such conduct. Surely that is the only sort of "animus" at issue here: moral disapproval of homosexual conduct, the same sort of moral disapproval that produced the centuries old criminal laws that we held constitutional in Bowers…..

But though Coloradans are, as I say, entitled to be hostile toward homosexual conduct, the fact is that the degree of hostility reflected by Amendment 2 is the smallest conceivable.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Camaro On Fire! and the new GM

Nothing like hopping into a red-hot muscle car to brighten ones day. Today, Calvin Fleming of Good PR, (who is the go-to man for General Motors public outreach for the LGBT) dropped by in a brand new 2010 Camaro to go for a test drive.

I was never much of a car-fanatic, but could always appreciate a nice design. This one reminded me of the days when my friend and I were 16, just got our licenses and he bought a new, bright yellow Super Bee. We were the coolest then, but wow were we cool today.

Calvin and I started rolling around Los Angeles and all of a sudden, I started noticing the looks on some of these guys faces in the other cars and also on the side of the road. Who knows if they were straight or gay, but they loved our ride. "Pull your tongues back in boys!" One guy even took a pic from his cellphone while driving.

This baby grips the road like she owns it. The 2010 Camaro is also very close to its original design when the first generation were produced between 1967-1969. I know what they mean now when they call them "muscle cars." This one made me want to go back to the gym.

Gays like gadgets! The interior of this model contains comfy leather seats, bluetooth and USB port availability and a handy personal device interface module for iPods. At one point, Calvin dialed into On-Star to get directions to The Abbey, (like we didn't know) and after the woman hooked us up, she ended by saying, "Thank you Maam!" I guess either the audio or her ears need some fine tuning.

I then engaged Calvin and his GM counterpart, Shad Balch in a conversation about the troubles the auto giant has been experiencing lately and what we can expect. Personally, I would love to own an American-made car, but everyone always advised against it.

Things are definitely changing since the bailout. As part of GM's restructuring, they have had to streamline their way of doing business in order to compete more effectively. According to Shad, GM was operating to match an industry where 14 million cars were sold in the U.S., when reality only dictated an 11-12 million market.

GM intends on returning to sustainable profitability in 24 months. They are streamlining their dealerships, managing unprofitable foreign operations and calling for considerable sacrifices from shareholders, employees and other debtors.

If their 2010 Camaro is any indication of what lies ahead at General Motors, I would say that we are going to see a new sleek company with great products that we can all be proud of again.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Genre Takes A Nose Dive

It's never a good thing when one our LGBT publications goes under, especially when one has been running for almost 20 years. But alas, that seems to be the fate of Genre Magazine.

We've been seeing the signs of their demise of the past months. Editor Neil Boulton left first and then my good friend, William Kapfer announced that he was resigning in March. There were also reports of subscribers not receiving their issues in December and even more disturbing, employees and writers not getting paid.

As reported by, CEO David Unger had this to say to his employees:

"We thank all of our readers, advertisers and editorial staff for their support throughout our more than 16-year history and hope that we can re-establish our relationship when times are better He noted that the decision to suspend Genre does not have any impact on other publications produced by HX Media, Window Media or Unite Media, which include the Washington Blade, Southern Voice, South Florida Blade, New York Blade and HX magazine. "Those publications will continue to publish and support their local communities," Unger said."

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Bob Witeck Responds To Gay Poverty Study

Gay bloggers and sloggers are reeling over the latest study put out by The Williams Institute at UCLA. Lions and tigers and bear markets - Oh My! We're not wealthy!

Bob Witeck of Witeck-Combs Communications is one of our leading experts on GLBT market research and responds here to the apparent watershed in gay history.

The new findings by Dr. Lee Badgett and economists working with the Williams Institute are invaluable. I've been a friend and colleague of Lee Badgett's for years, and endorse her painstaking research on same-sex coupled households, and know that her analysis is always thorough.

She has long concluded that the LGBT population, as a whole, is not more affluent than our heterosexual counterparts, and that does seem clear. In characterizing poverty statistics, moreover, she and her team find that among the most marginalized households are those of lesbian couples raising children, especially people of color as well as those living in rural communities. That is not starkly surprising since it is likely also to be true of other households headed by women, and for the community of color in America. But what she also concludes too is that LGBT families lack the same equal economic security offered to others -- such as job nondiscrimination and access to government programs of income security that are available to married couples and not to unmarried LGBT couples.

She notes -- while we do not have representative samples -- that transgender people in particular are likely most at economic risk and joblessness, which seems apparent to us all.

This story of discrimination and unfairness is real. While gay people are not "victims" as a class, some of our households and families are and can be victimized by unfair public policies, by their status as sexual minorities, by their gender and race as well, and that is the story we find here.

That said, are the nation's gay consumers and households still resilient and valuable to American businesses? Indisputably. Our contributions to the economy remain real and meaningful, as consumers, taxpayers, workers, investors, managers, and entrepreneurs. We matter not because we all are said to be "rich," which is not the case but because we have decision-making power, purchasing power and entrepreneurial power to create assets and income for ourselves and others. Businesses know this, and the leading ones are growing more emboldened to talk with us directly and respectfully.

But while our fragile economy and its heartbeat come back to life, this study reminds us that especially during hard times, many in our community suffer as ever, and face not just economic setbacks but the ones imposed by a discriminatory nation of out-dated laws and mean-spirited prejudices.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Are You Going To Heaven?

You know when you've reached the big time when you start receiving "hate-mail" and Echelon is excited to report that we just received our first. Perhaps our "going to hell -inbox" is low since our site is particularly focused on LGBT business, but to us, it means that our site is moving beyond our borders and having an effect.

Granted, we are not trying to convert Christians, (although going after the ex-gay ministry drop-outs did cross our minds) but Echelon has been rolling for 5 years now and it's time for us to really start educating the mainstream about our economic contributions. It is our belief that LGBT business is the sleeping giant in terms of achieving our ultimate political goal of "equality for LGBT."

Our hate-mailer didn't say how she found us, so I must assume that she went online and deliberately searched for something related to gay media in order to fulfill her own private ministry and hopefully convert us here.

Okay, I know you're waiting.....she wrote:

Hi, I am a born again Christian. I would like to say a few words about the "bigots" that you talk about in your magazine.. I firmly believe that homosexuality is an abomonation against the Law of God, and against nature. The Holy Bible says that it is an abomonation for a man to lay with another man and a woman to lay with another woman. Why would there be all creatures male and female if homosexuality was a natural and acceptable practice? I believe that every person has a soul and God our Creator loves you. And Jesus Christ his son died on the cross of Calvary for your sins. I pray that this email touches someone and they see the error of their ways and turn to a Almighty God and ask for forgiveness of their sins. The alternative is to die and go to hell for all eternity and I don't want anyone to have to suffer the torture of that for all eternity. Thank you for your time and I pray for your souls and conviction of your hearts.

At least she was polite and thanked us for our time and conviction...

Thursday, March 12, 2009

PlanetOut's Announces "Iffy" Future

This week, PlanetOut Inc filed their audit report with The Securities and Exchange Commission and announced that they doubt they will be able to continue operating as a going concern. Due to massive debt, the once largest GLBT media company is holding on long enough to complete a merger with Here Media Inc which is due to be completed by the end of the second quarter, 2009.

"Following a very thorough review of all of the strategic alternatives available to us, and the proposed transaction, our Board concluded that the opportunity to combine with Here Networks and Regent Entertainment Media was in the best interests of PlanetOut's stockholders," said Karen Magee, PlanetOut's CEO. "We believe that the strategic fit between PlanetOut and Here Media, and the complementary nature of these respective businesses, their client bases, and their audiences, will result in a combined company with greater financial and market strength than either business on its own."

"This business combination will unite a powerful broadband video solution with an iconic brand and a leading URL in the LGBT community," said Paul Colichman, CEO of Here Networks. "We are extremely excited about the opportunity to leverage this exceptional collection of assets to expand our audience, grow our revenues, and increase stockholder value."

Attend the Gay & Lesbian Market Symposium

Tom Roth of Community Marketing Inc. puts together a very informative seminar that includes experts in the industry. Matt Skallerud of Pink Banana Media is also involved which means that you are sure to walk away with your weight in gold.

Attend the Gay & Lesbian Market Symposium:
April 29 in San Francisco and April 30 in Los Angeles

Community Marketing and Pink Banana Media are proud to present the Gay & Lesbian Market Symposium in San Francisco on Wednesday, April 29 at the Nikko Hotel, and on Thursday, April 30 at the Marriott LAX. Both sessions run from 8:30am to 12:30pm.

Industry-leading presenters will discuss the latest in gay and lesbian consumer research and focus groups, successful marketing approaches, strategies, etc., as well as case studies representing a variety of industries and segments. Gaining new insights into this dynamic market--plus making networking connections--will be of great value.

The half-day symposium is just $45, so there’s no reason to miss this important opportunity to initiate, or update, your LGBT market program.

Space is limited, so please register soon. More info and a link to register is on

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Online Publishing: Work Your Social Media

This week, we have heard a report from 24/7 Wall St., about major newspapers in our country that are having near-death experiences. These media outlets will either fold completely or just operate online.

Many of our own GLBT publishing houses have also faced their troubles as we navigate through the economy's rough waters. Genre magazine, a Window Media publication has already lost their Editor, Neil Boulton and Publisher, William Kapfer will step down by the end of March.

Although, has been online for 4 years, we have always struggled to put out a print companion. Last year, we were able to put out 5 editions until advertising revenue was not enough to sustain the costs involved. However, we are a small publishing house and are able to be a lot more flexible than the big conglomerates.

In order for us to ourselves, we have had to be both clever and creative. Social media is an invaluable tool for any big or small media company. We have doubled visitors to our site within the past 30 days by simply staying on top of the latest trends and making sure that our articles and stories are shared throughout the net. A friend of Echelon's, Katie Schwartz has been very intrumental in providing key tips for us to implement to improve our outreach. Katie is an incredibly talented guru for SEO as well as a hysterical comedian/writer. Check out our her blog when you can.

Since we have realized a measurable success with our own site, it is part of our mission to share what we have learned. It doesn't matter if you own a media company or a small business, social media is the way to go.

Facebook etc. - Get your company up on as many networks as possible. i.e. twitter, plaxo, linked in, collective x etc. Most of these outlets have rss capabilities which is essential to bringing visitors to your site. GLBT business owners should also take advantage of the gay social media platforms such as PinkBananaWorld or Glee.

TwitterFeed - allows you to load up your rss feed for automatic tweets.

Friendfeed - also lets you load up your rss feed to filter out to your social networks.

Blog Comments - Get Google Reader and subscribe to a bunch of GLBT blogs, such as Pam's House Blend, Queerty, Towleroad or The Gist or even here. Start commenting on their blog and at the end of your comment, insert your web url including the http:// part. You will be surprised on how much traffic you could generate.

Your Blog: Start your own blog. Blogs are very "search engine-friendly." People love reading blogs and it has definitely changed the landscape of the Internet. Go to Google's blogger and start cranking.

The best thing about everything we have shared above is that it's all "free." Yes, it can be awfully time consuming, but well worth it. If you can manage to block in 2 hours a day, you are sure to see results.

Please share with us any comments on your social media exploits. We look forward to hearing them.

Monday, March 9, 2009



An Insider’s Look At How Businesses Can Tap Into $600 Billion Spending Power of LGBT Community

How your business can tap into the $600 billion spending power of the LGBT Community will be the subject of an upcoming panel, led by New York Times’ Advertising Columnist Stuart Elliot.

The event, presented by the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce’s LGBT-2-B Committee -- a group created to customize the rich array of Manhattan Chamber services to professionals in the LGBT community -- will take place on Monday, March 23, 2009, from 6-9 p.m. at the Con Edison offices, located at 13 Irving Place, New York.

Also serving on the panel, along with Mr. Elliot, are Randy Griffin, Senior Director of Sales for Affinity, Government and Small Business marketing segments, Marriott Hotels; Howard Buford, CEO & Founder, Prime Access; Rashad Robinson, Senior Director of Media Programs, GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) and Amy Wigler, Vice President Marketing, Logo by MTV Networks.

Tickets are $15 for MCC Members, and $20 for Non-Members, and can be purchased at ( or at the door. Tickets at the door are $5 more.

From small businesses to major corporations, many companies perceived to be gay-friendly are already reaping the varied and numerous benefits of working with the LGBT community,” commented Nancy Ploeger, President of the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce. “We expect this panel of distinguished experts to generate some lively and important dialogue about how businesses can develop powerful and profitable partnerships with the LGBT community.

The Manhattan Chamber of Commerce advocates for positive business legislation, sponsors educational seminars and networking events, markets its member companies and encourages global business. The MCC also hold street fairs, volunteer expos and supports the non-profit community in its quest to improve the quality of life in its neighborhoods. The organization represents the voice of over 100,000 companies in Manhattan and partners with over 300 diverse business organizations in the city.

The LGBT-2-B Committee is chaired by David Reid, Director of Corporate Relations at The Asia Society, and Allan Fried, an Executive & Career Coach and is comprised of a talented group of New York City entrepreneurs, corporate executives and non-profit sector leaders. The LGBT-2-B network is intended to maximize the economic growth of New York City’s LGBT-owned businesses by creating partnerships and business development opportunities.

Panelist Biographies

Stuart Elliot, Advertising Columnist, New York Times (moderator)

Howard Buford, CEO and Founder, Prime Access

Randy Griffin, Senior Director of Sales for Affinity, Government and Small Business marketing segments/Marriott Hotels

Rashad Robinson, GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against
Defamation)-Commercial Closet, Senior Director of Media Programs

Amy Wigler,Vice President Marketing/Logo by MTV Networks

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Genre Publisher, William Kapfer To Step Down

Window Media CMO/Genre Magazine Publisher, William Kapfer will leave his post by the end of the month according to a email from him today.

Kapfer joined Window Media in 2006 and since then has guided the Gay publishing company into the world of Web 2.0.

In a recent letter to his team, Kapfer wrote:

Attrition is a natural progression in any industry, and I feel I’ve done my best to bring the company into a Web 2.0—21st Century state of mind. Although I am not aware of the details for a succession plan, the company will remain in good hands, under the direction of David Unger, Mike Kitchens and Steve Myers.

The management team I’m leaving behind has an acute understanding of the current economic situation, and I am confident are making significant steps—courageous steps—to ensure that Window Media and Genre Magazine are able to maintain our leadership position in the LGBT community. In addition to working with world-class sales and publishing executives over the past three years, I've been able to build two amazing teams in Marketing and Online—talented teams I'm leaving behind at Window Media.

We have a deep and talented management team across all areas of the company. Our successful implementation of core strategies and the timely rollout of key products this past three years testify to the effectiveness of this team. I continue to believe that intense focus on our key news products is the best means to create value with our available resources and continuing to create cross-platform, integrated programs that include a rich digital strategy to address that value—will continue to strengthen Window Media’s unique operating platform in the industry.

Window Media did not begin to fully invest in its online department until I arrived in 2006, so the recent successes we have seen are largely in part due to the maturation of investment into a strategic online strategy. Under the leadership of Kevin Smith, specific items that attributed to the success of our digital strategy include: simple weekly/monthly rates, sales training in creating packages, resource investment into search engine optimization, capitalizing on high-traffic components to increase page-views (photo galleries, surveys, etc.), redesign of sites to accommodate large agency buys, and much more were introduced.

What's more, 2008 pushed the envelope in development and strategies that had been missing previously, enabling us to expect to see continued growth in 2009 due to the following: additional online revenue stream opportunities, investment in e-marketing strategies, further online sales training, and many more added website features to drive traffic (interactive dining guides, new bladewire 2.0 system, and interactive video sections for every website).

Our commitment to high quality journalism also continues unabated. Window Media and Genre Magazine are public service journalism companies—and we understand that our investment in providing honest, independent information continues to perform a vital role in our democratic society. In so doing, David Unger and his team will continue to broaden our reach in each community and should expect our total audience in print and online to grow, further solidifying the company’s position for delivering mass reach for advertisers in each market.

The same technology that brings us new competition for audiences and ad sales also empowers us to redistribute work, centralize some functions and operate far more efficiently. Over the past three years, Window Media has done a better job at sharing news content and resources within our company, which both saves money and improves quality.

Finally, and after much soul searching and contemplation, I am leaving Window Media & Genre Magazine with the confidence that the leadership team will continue my vision of creating a hybrid print and online, news and advertising company for the increasing needs of the LGBTQ Community—one strongly positioned to capture our share of business in the evolving media world.
Although, he has no definite plans for the future, I'm sure we will be hearing from this very talented and personable man very soon.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

New Gay-Friendly Franchises

As the unemployment figures rise, it's important to consider "owning a franchise" as an option to having more control over your future. continues to accumulate new Gay-friendly franchises to our roster.

Some of the new opportunities include:

Hamburger Mary's.
h-mary Each Hamburger Mary's franchise is an "open air bar & grille for open-minded people," where guests enjoy a flamboyant dining experience. Everyone is welcome at Hamburger Mary's, but our unique aspect is that we are the first and only national franchise that is actively marketing primarily to the GLBT community, where we enjoy widespread name recognition.

Tax Centers Of America
tcoaTax Centers of America is a full service, year around tax service and E-File tax Business. TCOA is the first franchise business in the industry to offer the buy 1 tax franchise and get 4 tax franchises free. TCOA has territories available in all 50 States.

Philly Dawgz
PhillyDawgzPhilly Dawgz is an easy concept: Anyone can do it and it can fit in virtually any space! We offer flexibility with the ability to change the menu to accommodate specific customers' wants and needs. A Philly Dawgz restaurant is also easy to set up and maintain. The equipment and procedures required are straightforward and user-friendly, making it easy to train new employees. And, few employees are required as the turn-around from the customer ordering to the customer receiving his or her food is minimal and quick.

Madison Capital
Madison CapitalMadison Capital is a direct funding source serving the needs of the franchise industry for over 35-years covering the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Our focus is on outstanding service, quick response, and knowledgeable support. We offer both equipment and vehicle financing and will assist you in selecting the appropriate financial solution for your business needs.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Town Call: Learn how to apply for Out & Equal Workplace Awards and Summit workshops

RSVP for this month’s Town Call to learn everything you will need to know about submitting award nominations and workshop proposals for the 2009 Out & Equal Summit.

Our discussion will include:

Insights into the screening committee’s perspectives and criteria of the Out & Equal Workplace Awards, commonly known as the Outies, our most prestigious honor given to individuals and organizations that are leaders in advancing LGBT workplace equality.

Discovering what last year's Outie winners did in their quest for equality that set them apart from other nominees. Exploring the workshop submittal process, as well as previous topics that have included human resources, Employee Resource Groups and LGBT employee concerns.

Learning about core concepts that will be addressed during the Summit, and seeing how your workshop can compliment and enhance the event for attendees
Applications for both the awards and workshops will be available online beginning April 1. Deadline for the award nominations is May 1; deadline for workshop proposals is May 22.

This webinar will provide you with some great and timely guidance and is open to all. It is recommended for people and organizations with a record of support for LGBT workplace equality.

Presenters: 2008 Outie Award Winner and Workshop Presenter: Chris Crespo; Out & Equal Associate Director of Summit & Events Anthony Bannon.

Town Call
March 26
Pacific: 12 p.m. | Mountain: 1 p.m. | Central: 2 p.m. | Eastern: 3 p.m.

Summit: Save the date for the 2009 Out & Equal Workplace Summit

Mark your calendar for the 2009 Out & Equal Workplace Summit for LGBT Equality, set for October 6-9 at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Florida.

We will be providing regular updates over the coming months on registration, workshops, keynote speakers and all aspects of the event.

The Out & Equal Workplace Summit is the world’s premier conference on LGBT workplace equality, providing a unique opportunity to build alliances, share ideas and take actions that foster safe as well as equitable work environments for everyone.

More than 2,500 participants are expected to take part in workshops led by some of the country’s leading workplace experts, participate in unique networking functions and also listen to inspirational, unforgettable speakers.

2009 Out & Equal Workplace Summit
October 6-9
Disney's Coronado Springs Resort, Florida

Betcha Won't Do It!

Betcha Won't Do It!

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Tuesday, March 3, 2009


Another sign pointing to the claim that everyone is jumping on the iPhone Application bandwagon

Miz Cotton could possibly be THE FIRST to offer an iPhone app featuring DRAG*.

The entertainment iPhone application "Ask Cotton" is a novelty YES or NO answer-seeking application that prominently features the z-list wannabe character of Miz Cotton. In the tradition of "should I" or "shouldn't I" ... Miz Cotton offers advice to those seeking answers for a mere 99 cents ... offering up the fun, camp and a touch of sarcastic nature that is Miz Cotton.

* iTunes queries using the search words "DRAG" and/or "QUEEN" prior to the launch of ASK COTTON did not return any applications that appeared to feature a drag character and post-launch only returned the ASK COTTON application [featuring a drag character]. Not a scientific study ... just an observation.