Bilerico Report

LGBTQ digital journalists revolt against GLAAD over awards snub

rejected-stamp

UPDATE: GLAAD has responded with the following letter:

It’s become abundantly clear that we were wrong to remove the Outstanding Blog category, and we apologize. Although we cannot make changes to this year’s slate of categories and nominees, the Outstanding Blog category will be reinstated in 2017 with improved selection criteria that ensures grassroots LGBT voices are given the recognition they’re due. And like in years past, there will be no submission fee required in the category.

The contributions of LGBT bloggers and independent media have been critical to the advancement of this movement and, indeed, GLAAD’s mission. Eliminating the Outstanding Blog category was an affront to the tireless efforts of those whose work has been essential to putting a spotlight on the issues LGBT people face, and which too often goes overlooked. Removing the category was wrong, and we are committed to doing better.

Seth Adam

Vice President of Communications, GLAAD

Original post:

LGBT bloggers and journalists are in open revolt over GLAAD’s decision to eliminate the Outstanding Blog award. The award was established five years ago after numerous complaints that the media watchdog favored large commercial enterprises over independent activist media.

I helped lead that charge for recognition and it’s particularly painful to see the organization sliding back into their pro-corporate stance. As a two time nominee for best blog (Bilerico Project), I’ve always kept a wary eye on the award because, while they established the category, they never gave the award out on stage.

GLAAD hosts three galas yearly to give out the awards but there was never room on stage for a blogger. GLAAD makes money hand over fist with those award ceremonies, but refused to help small bloggers making a minuscule amount of money for their daily efforts attend the event. The group wouldn’t even give the winners a complimentary ticket to pick up the award off stage. It’s shameful.

Several previous nominees and winners have joined together with editors and reporters from LGBT newspapers to protest the decision in an open letter published yesterday afternoon. As a signatory, it’s my hope that GLAAD reverses their decision, reinstates the award, and honors the winner publicly. If you’re an independent blogger who’d like to be added to the open letter, let us know in the comments section and we’ll get you added.

Independent bloggers don’t have the resources and cash that large corporations have and we’ve led the charge on LGBT rights reporting in a way those sites can’t. We’ve reported from the streets, from the halls of power, and scooped larger media conglomerates. We’ve raised hell and influenced the scope of national and state policies and politics.

And we deserve better.

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