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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

'Gays & Lesbians, Know Them?'

- Publicis Groupe & GLAAD Host Advertising Week's First Ever Panel Discussion Focused on the LGBT Consumer

Stuart Elliott of The New York Times to Lead Discussion

NEW YORK, Sept. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- Publicis Groupe and the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) host Advertising Week's first ever panel discussion focused on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) consumers entitled "Gays & Lesbians, Know Them?"

The panel, lead by Stuart Elliott of The New York Times, will be held on Monday, September 27, 2010 from 11:00-11:45 a.m. at the Paley Center - Concourse Theatre.  Panelists include representatives from Microsoft, American Airlines, LGBT-focused cable channel LOGO, and Prime Access Inc.

"Today, many brands have recognized the value in speaking to the LGBT community, but there are many more brands that haven't," said Phillip Sontag, MS&LGroup, and co-founder of Egalite, the Publicis Groupe's LGBT Employee Resource Group.  "Our goal is to have a thoughtful, provocative discussion that helps shape the way we as marketers reach the LGBT community."

"When companies include images of our community in their ads, they send an important message that gay and transgender people are a part of the American cultural fabric," expressed GLAAD President Jarrett Barrios.  "It's these images that build acceptance and understanding of our community.  We are proud to partner with Publicis to advocate for fair, accurate and inclusive advertising."

"We're seeing more and more gay and lesbian storylines on TV every day, and it's not taboo anymore," said Adam Wasserman, Digitas and co-founder of Egalite.  "This recent evolution is encouraging us to increase our deep knowledge about this community, and to find the right ways for an efficient dialogue between brands and LGBT consumers."

"We created Egalite at Publicis Groupe to unite our brand's LGBT employees and allies in the New York region and streamline an LGBT approach for our clients," added Sandra Sims-Williams, Chair of the Publicis Groupe Diversity Council in the USA.  "Egalite serves both an internal and external purpose, and our partnership with GLAAD is one illustration of our global Diversity Policy, composed of several initiatives dedicated to various communities." 

To RSVP for this panel, please visit Follow the panel discussion on Twitter using #LGBTAdWeek.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Details Lacks Details With LGBT College Article

Written By Doree Shafrir, Details Magazine posted 9/23/10 entitled: "The Ivy League's Big Gay Admission"

It's always wonderful to see mainstream magazines give exposure to the LGBT community. However, the article seems to lack a bit of substance.

Safrir's piece professes that the direct recruitment of LGBT students is a "new movement." Although the title itself may be enough to perk the interest of potential readers, it's really nothing new. Nor is there any "big admission" in the article from Ivy League recruiters.

For one, Ivy League schools like most campuses around the country have been recruiting LGBT students for many years at dedicated events. Additionally, Campus Pride, a non-profit run by Shane Widemeyer has been staging numerous LGBT college recruiting events around the country for quite some time. However, there is no mention in the article whatsoever of this empowering organization.

"From Newsweek to Details Magazine, every commercial outlet wants to tout that they are an LGBT authority when it comes to the LGBT and ally college student experience.   Campus Pride cautions how credible these reports are in articles auch as Details Magazine and even the Newsweek recent LGBT-friendly ranking. We are glad to see so much commericial interest in being 'gay friendly' but  hope prospective college students and families seek out factual resources such as the Campus Pride's and our national college fair program," stated Shane Widemeyer of Campus Pride.

Irena Smith said it best:

"In some students' cases sexual orientation can weigh in the admissions committee's decision, depending on how much the student tries to disclose and how much is appropriate," says Irena Smith, a private college consultant in Palo Alto, California. "But I think a student's orientation would also need to feed into something either like a really strong sense of self-awareness or a willingness to organize politically and socially and form a support group or start a gay-straight alliance. I think admissions officers are more savvy than to just say, 'Here's an LGBT kid—we don't have enough of those.' "

Read More

Monday, September 27, 2010

Transgender Boy Loses Homecoming King Title

Despite receiving the most votes for Homecoming King at Mona Shores High School in Michigan, Oakleigh Marshall (Oak) was disqualified to claim the title as he is still listed as a female in school records.

Interesting enough, social media played a great role for Oak in garnering the majority of votes. He launched a page of Facebook and his friends have also put up a page in support entitled, "Oak is my King" with 533 members.

Although the outcome is disappointing, his story is a great example of how the world is changing and our youth are way more accepting of "difference and acceptance" than mainstream adults.

Thursday, September 23, 2010


Special Presentation Was Made at City Council Meeting in Recognition of
The Abbey’s 20th Anniversary and David Cooley’s Civic Contributions
(West Hollywood, CA) – September 16, 2010 – Los Angeles-based luxury hospitality, real estate development and lifestyle company, sbe, and the world-famous Abbey Food & Bar, are proud to announce that The Abbey received a special recognition from the City of West Hollywood on Monday September 20 in acknowledgement of The Abbey’s 20th anniversary and its position as an icon of the community, as well as President and Founder David Cooley’s own contributions to the community. Cooley was honored with a special presentation given by the West Hollywood City Council.

We are thankful for the City’s recognition and the continuous support from the community,” said Cooley. “It is an honor to have a dream of mine come true – The Abbey has become a city landmark for people to gather and to enjoy themselves. To have this happen in West Hollywood I have to say thank you!”

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

LGBT Prosper: Business & Advocacy Working Together

Hailing from rural Montana, Mark Nelson and Bob Marsenich have recently launched LGBT Prosper, a site devoted towards both LGBT equality and business prosperity.
One of the most interesting points of this partnership is that both of these entrepreneurs are non-LGBT. Their passion for equality and justice were the major forces driving their inspiration towards the project.  Additionally, they chose the LGBT community based upon the high level of support that the market gives to one another.
We think that there is a lot of power with non-LGBT people advocating for this community,” stated Mark Nelson. “Basically, it’s the right thing to do and we have to work ‘together’ to be equal.
LGBT Prosper offers their clients the ability to set up storefronts and list their services that is targeted directly towards the Gay community. In addition, 3% of the proceeds are directed towards an LGBT non-profit which is voted on by the site’s visitors. In increments of $10,000, the first installment will be sent to the HRC Workplace Project.
Their “storefront” concept is unique to LGBT media.  Based upon the models created by Amazon and Ebay, LGBT Prosper offers clients the ability to sell the products and services through the site and help the community at the same time. The owners have created a system where buyers can pay for the items via paypal or by credit card that is hosted by LGBT prosper. Sellers will pay a 5.9% transaction fee and list their items for 20 cents each.
Each client that comes on board is required to sign an Equality Agreement that states that the company is both non-discriminatory and supports LGBT equality.
Although launched only recently, the entrepreneurs have already made outreach to the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, (NGLCC) where they are corporate members. They have already begun marketing their site towards NGLCC members and are intent on expanding their campaign as they go.
LGBT Prosper is a great looking site which presents itself as a great new media outlet to both promote the Gay buying power and make it worth the LGBT while.


Monday, September 20, 2010

Obama and the Gays: A Political Marriage

By Tracy Baim, with articles and essays by top gay journalists and activists

CHICAGO -- Obama and the Gays: A Political Marriage is a new book by long-time Chicago-based journalist Tracy Baim. The book presents an in- depth look at Obama's trajectory on gay issues, and will be available on print-on-demand through and ebook readers. It is also available through CreateSpace,

Baim, co-founder of Windy City Times newspaper, has compiled documents, photos, and interviews with Obama for a close look at how his views on LGBT issues have changed over the years, as well as the accomplishments and stumbles of his presidential administration. In the first book ever published on this important topic, Baim is joined by some of the most respected LGBT journalists, bloggers, and activists from around the US.

The book includes articles by Chuck Colbert, Lisa Keen, Karen Ocamb, Bob Roehr and others; essays by Wayne Besen, Sean Cahill, John D'Emilio, Kerry Eleveld, Rod McCullom, the Reverend Irene Monroe, Michelangelo Signorile, Pam Spaulding, Timothy Stewart-Winter, Andrew Tobias, and Phill Wilson; and dozens of interviews with Chicago and national gay movement leaders. Senior editors are Toni Armstrong Jr., Jorjet Harper and William B. Kelley.

Baim will read from and sign copies of the book in Chicago Wed., Oct. 20, 7:30 p.m. at Women & Children First Bookstore, 5233 N. Clark St., and Wed., Oct. 27, 6 p.m. at the Harold Washington Library, 400 S. State St.

DADT. ENDA. DOMA. These four-letter words are familiar to everyone involved in the struggle for gay civil rights. Like it or not, they form the core of the national "gay agenda." When Barack Obama ran for president, he promised repeal of the Don't Ask, Don't Tell military gay ban and passage of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. He also said he would push for repeal of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, even though he was personally against same-sex marriage.

Obama and the Gays presents a clear, lively, in-depth review of Barack Obama's policies on gay issues, from the early days of his political career through his meteoric rise to prominence -- all in the context of the political landscape of the times -- and examines the role the gay community has played in Obama's victories. Obama and the Gays also documents the actions and reactions of influential gay organizations and gay community leaders to Obama's speeches, positions, and decisions that directly affect the lives of our LGBT citizens.

The website for the book is

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Tracy Baim is co-founder and publisher of Windy City Times, one of the oldest and most honored weekly gay newspapers in the U.S. Baim has been covering the gay community since 1984, including Chicago politics and Barack Obama's first race for elected office. Baim interviewed Obama during his 2004 U.S. Senate run, and has covered a wide range of gay political issues for more than 26 years.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

CNN and Univision Should Go Gay Bowling

I recently had a discussion with an executive at a small company while we were discussing advertising on our site: and his question to me was, "Is there any company these days who is "not gay-friendly?" Um....

This week, there must have been something in the stars, but I won't even try and justify the actions of CNN and Univision in terms of their recent survey polls. Just to update you, CNN ran a poll that asked the question: "Are Gay TV Characters Bad For Society?" Today I learned that Univision ran an online poll asking, “is homosexuality compatible with sports?

What is the disconnect? Both CNN and Univision are both considered to be highly reputable media sources, so how can something like this happen? Do they have a smarmy little creature sitting in a cubicle that is assigned the task of creating poll questions that will attract attention? With no oversight?

Thank God for GLAAD! They immediately contacted these media idiots and got a rapid response. They took the polls down.  I also love part of GLAAD's response:

"We greatly appreciate the prompt responses from both and CNN. The next time any media outlet decides it wants to poll its viewers about whether gay inclusion is a good thing or a bad thing, we suggest that they instead ask themselves THIS poll question: “Does homophobia belong in the media?”
It must be tough to come up with poll questions day after day, so I've created a couple of suggestions for them:

1- Is Anderson Cooper "bad for society?"
2- Should we support media companies that make oops! ant-gay mistakes?
3 -Do you think CNN and Univision should make an on-air apology and donate millions to GLAAD?

You tell me.....

Monday, September 13, 2010

Senator Reid Schedules Defense Authorization Bill for Next Week

Pressure on Majority Leader Pays Off as Thursday Lobby Day Becomes Critical 

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Servicemembers United, the nation's largest organization of gay and lesbian troops and veterans, applauded today's announcement by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's office that Senator Reid will finally bring the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) up for debate during the week of September 20th. The NDAA contains an important provision that would authorize the repeal of the discriminatory "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" law, in addition to authorizations for annual pay and equipment funding for the entire military.

"We are both pleased and relieved that Senator Reid has decided to schedule the defense authorization bill for floor time next week," said Alexander Nicholson, founder and Executive Director of Servicemembers United. "We are fairly confident that we will have the 60 votes to break a filibuster of this bill. It would be shameful for lawmakers to vote to hold up an important and expansive piece of legislation like the defense authorization bill simply because of their opposition to one or two provisions within it."

Servicemembers United has been leveling sustained, heavy pressure on Senator Reid over the delay in allowing the NDAA to move forward, including sharp criticism just this morning in the Capitol Hill newspaper The Hill ("Reid My Lips: No Forgiveness for No NDAA in September").

A Senate-focused "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" lobby day, nicknamed "The Final Assault," is  scheduled for this Thursday, September 16th in Washington, DC. Anyone interested in participating in this effort should register immediately at

Friday, September 10, 2010

Human Rights Campaign Unveils New “Proud” Collaboration with Designers Alex & Chloe

New Proud Collection in time for National Coming Out Day October 11th

The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization is unveiling its newest collaboration with innovative Los Angeles-based designers Alex & Chloe. Following the success of last year’s collaboration, Alex & Chloe have done it again, creating a new bold limited-edition “Proud” collection exclusively for Human Rights Campaign to encourage all forward thinking fashionistas to come out as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or straight supporters and raise awareness for LGBT equality. Alex & Chloe are the ultimate authority when it comes to style and originality securing them a dedicated global fashion following among trendsetters and celebrities worldwide.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Unconstitutional Baby!

Kudos to the Log Cabin Republicans for bringing this challenge of DADT to court.

Some quotes:

Statement from HRC President Joe Solmonese regarding a decision by a federal judge ruling the ban on openly lesbian and gay service members unconstitutional:

Today a federal judge affirmed what the vast majority of the American people know to be true – that it’s time for the discriminatory ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ law to be sent to the dustbin of history.  With this legal victory in hand, Congress is right now in a perfect position to strengthen our national security by ending a law that has discharged thousands of capable service members. With House passage already secured, the Senate can and should vote in the next few weeks to repeal ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ and allow every qualified man and woman the chance to serve with honor.”

Statement from Log Cabin Republicans and White & Case

We are pleased to report that US District Judge Virginia Phillips ruled in favor of Log Cabin Republicans in the case Log Cabin Republicans vs. The United States.  Judge Phillips found in favor of Log Cabin Republicans on both due process and first amendment claims.  The court will now enter a permanent injunction barring further enforcement of the US government’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy.  We are studying the 86-page opinion and will have more to say soon.  The entire opinion can be viewed at:

Statement from Aubrey Sarvis, Army veteran and executive director of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network:

We’re pleased by the judge's decision, but this decision is likely to be appealed and will linger for years.  Congress made the DADT law 17 years ago and Congress should repeal it. The Senate will have the opportunity to do just that this month and most Americans think the Senate should seize it.”

Statement from Chad Griffin, Board President, The American Foundation for Equal Rights on Court's Ruling in "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" Case

"Today's court decision declaring "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" unconstitutional is yet another significant and long-overdue step toward full equality for all Americans.  Along with the recent federal court decisions on DOMA and Proposition 8, it is clear that our nation is moving toward the day when every American will be treated equally under the law, as is required by our Constitution."

Statement from National Stonewall Democrats

We demand Senate Republicans rise above the obstructionism they’ve been playing at... and let a vote happen on what the vast majority of Americans want: repeal of DADT.”

Michael Mitchell, the Executive Director of the National Stonewall Democrats had this to say regarding the Federal Court’s decision finding Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Unconstitutional:

Today’s Federal court decision calling the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy unconstitutional on grounds that it violates gay military members' rights to free speech, due process and open association is another nail in the coffin of the policy.

Mitchell continued, “We’re glad that the Federal court agrees with President Obama’s position: that Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell needs to come to an end. Our Senators need to hear from their constituents demanding repeal. We also call on Senate Republicans to rise above the obstructionism they’ve been playing at for months and let a vote happen on what the vast majority of Americans want: repeal of DADT.

Suicide: We Give A Damn - New Video

The Give a Damn Campaign, a project of Cyndi Lauper's True Colors Fund, has released its latest video during National Suicide Prevention Month to shine a light on the higher risk of suicide for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth. Lily Tomlin, Judith Light, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Mae Whitman speak out about this crisis in this month’s video, part of the campaign's ongoing series of public service announcements.

Many gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth struggle to come to terms with their sexual orientation or gender identity, while also seeking the acceptance of their family and friends. Unfortunately, too often they end up feeling so alone and rejected that ending their life seems like their only option to deal with what they are going through.

Suicide is already the third-leading cause of death for young people ages 10 to 24, and it turns out that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth are actually 4 times more likely to attempt it than their straight peers. More than 1 in 3 gay and transgender teens have attempted suicide.  

Rejection by one’s parents, one's family and one's community has to be one of the most painful and lonely experiences any person can be subjected to. So deep is the hurt that it causes these kids to think suicide is an option,” said Cyndi Lauper. “We can’t let this continue. We have to help our children and friends accept themselves. We have to make sure that they know that they are loved and that they are not alone."

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Here Media Earns Three ASME Cover Award Nominations

American Society of Magazine Editors honors The Advocate with two and Out with one Best Cover Contest nominations

September 7, 2010 (LOS ANGELES) – Here Media, the world’s leading gay media company, received three prestigious 2010 Best Cover Contest nominations from the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME). ASME named two Advocate covers and one Out cover as finalists.

The Advocate’s September 2009 cover, featuring President Obama in tribute to the famed Shepard Fairey image with the tagline “Nope?” is a finalist in the “Most Controversial” category. Additionally, The Advocate’s February 2010 cover, depicting a donkey sticking its tongue out with the tagline “Gays to the DNC: Kiss My Ass,” is a finalist in the “News & Business” category. Out was named a finalist in the “Fashion & Beauty” category for its February 2010 cover, the magazine’s Annual Swimsuit Issue.

The finalist covers are now posted on for voting by the public. Amazon visitors will have 30 days to choose the Best Cover from six finalists in each of 12 categories as determined by the ASME judges. After each category winner is determined, visitors will have the opportunity to choose the Best Cover of Year from the category winners.

Vote now at:

The Advocate is currently available to consumers via the print publication,, and the Advocate imprint published by Alyson Books. Follow The Advocate on Facebook at and on Twitter at TheAdvocateMag. The Out brand is currently available to consumers as a monthly print publication found on newsstands and at select retailers or via subscription. Out can also be accessed digitally at or on Apple mobile devices through the Zinio application.

Thursday, September 2, 2010


Australia’s finest underwear label Todd and Terry is concerned that the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) is taking its toll on guys being able to replace their underwear. And the last thing the world needs is men walking around in old underwear!

So it’s Todd and Terry to the rescue! The brand has now reduced its retail prices permanently, so that you can wear new underwear.

From now through February 2011, you can buy any pair of Todd and Terry from your favorite retailer for only $15.50. And it gets better. They guarantee the price will stay under $20 through to February 2012.

If you need to replace your underwear or you’ve thought of trying Todd and Terry, there’s never been a better time. And you could even win a year’s supply of the world’s favorite underwear!

All you have to do is simply enter online at Todd and Terry’s official website,, and the brand will give the five most needy guys, as judged by the public, a year’s supply (24 pairs) of Todd and Terry for FREE.

The GFC won’t stop Todd and Terry from keeping the world looking and feeling fresh.

For more information, visit the brand’s official website,