PRESS PASS Q
A Newsletter and Trade Publication for the LGBT Media Professional
MAY 2011 [Vol. 13, No. 2)
Celebrating 12 years of serving our community of journalists
TABLE OF CONTENTS
FEATURE: Taylor-made news: LGBT media agree Elizabeth Taylor’s death was newsworthy, but news handled differently by outlets
by Chuck Colbert
When a straight celebrity ally of the LGBT community dies, is that “gay news”? In the case of Elizabeth Taylor, editors and publisher of LGBT publications voiced a resounding yes.
And yet, coverage of Elizabeth Taylor’s March 23 death from congestive heart failure at the age of 79 varied in LGBT outlets. Some publications considered it a national front- page story. Other outlets paid tribute on the arts pages. Some contributors offered a personal take, with news editors looking for a distinctly local angle.
“I don’t think there’s any doubt she had an impact in the LGBT world,” said Tracy Baim, publisher and executive editor of Chicago’s Windy City Times. “Even before the AIDS epidemic Taylor was iconic in the community for her life and tragedies. So in the old-school way of thinking of divas, she would be important for us to cover. But separate from that, her work on AIDS definitely put her death at the level of doing a large tribute to her.”
Besides a news story, Windy City Times, for its “AIDS @ 30” series, ran an interview with Taylor, originally published in the November 1997 edition of POZ, a national magazine on HIV/AIDS issues. A film critic honored her legacy from an arts perspective.
Elizabeth Taylor helped to found the American Foundation for AIDS Research [amFAR) for which she raised millions of dollars. And her own Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation raised an estimated $50 million, with Chicago House and Chicago’s Howard Brown Health Center receiving funding from the organization.
In California, “The gay angle was simple: Her AIDS advocacy work and friendship with the late Rock Hudson,” said Cynthia Laird, editor of San Francisco’s Bay Area Reporter.
“Elizabeth Taylor is an icon in LGBT Los Angeles as much for her AIDS activism as for her legendary screen roles,” said Karen Ocamb, news editor of Frontiers in LA magazine.
And with the motion picture industry nearby, Ocamb and Frontiers had an obvious local angle – one with several lenses.
“Remember,” Ocamb continued, “Elizabeth Taylor was close to many closeted gay men during her Hollywood career. Montgomery Clift and Rock Hudson are just two.
“And then when AIDS hit, she was there early with a feisty passion that seemed unabated even as she fought her own serious health issues. She used her star power to make things happen at a time when the Religious Right – from Jerry Falwell to Jesse Helms and William Dannemeyer – were wishing for God’s punishment of death for people with AIDS, and a pox on those who loved and cared for them. So Taylor put a lot on the line – including her Hollywood career, reputation and her brand name associated with products like White Diamonds. Anyone who puts themselves on the line in some way, who chooses to fight in the dirty political trenches alongside gay men and people with HIV/AIDS, is worthy of our attention.”
Just as Hollywood star power gave Frontiers in LA an obvious hometown link, so politics and activism enabled the Washington Blade to cover Elizabeth Taylor’s death with a uniquely local imprint.
“She had several connections to Washington, D.C., so it was a compelling local story for us,” said Kevin Naff, the Blade’s editor.
Taylor testified more than once on Capitol Hill for increased AIDS research funds. On one visit to Washington, she spoke when the AIDS quilt was in town. Taylor was married to a U.S. senator, Virginia Republican John Warner from 1976 to 1982. And she donated $50,000 to the Whitman- Walker Clinic, an HIV/AIDS and LGBT medical care facility, and lent her name to the clinic’s main building for patient services – the Elizabeth Taylor Medical Center.
For Naff, Taylor’s legacy of political activism for AIDS/HIV awareness makes her passing “absolutely” LGBT newsworthy.
“It’s not that we all think she was fabulous,” he said. “It’s not about her being a star; it’s not about idol worship. She made it trendy to wear those red ribbons to show compassion and support for our community and to donate money for gay causes at a time when we were pariahs, when people wanted nothing to do with us gay men who were sick and dying. I don’t think we can overstate her contributions in that regard.”
The Blade ran the story, “Liz Taylor hailed for LGBT and AIDS activism” with a banner headline across the front page of the March 25 issue. Veteran journalist Lou Chibarro wrote it.
Seattle Gay News and Bay Area Reporter also covered Taylor’s death on the front page. South Florida Gay News and Baltimore OUTLoud ran tributes to the Hollywood legend in their nightlife and arts sections, respectively. In New York, Gay City News provided prominent news coverage, as did Washington D.C.-based Metro Weekly.
Inadvertently, Elizabeth Taylor may also have helped to raise the credibility and visibility of gay media.
Veteran journalist Lisa Keen, editor of the Blade during the 1980s, recalls Taylor’s invitation then to be a guest speaker at the National Press Club. Although Keen was a club member, “No one from the Blade had ever been offered the privilege of attending a pre-speech reception for a speaker,” she said.
The Press Club, however, invited Keen as Blade editor not only to attend the reception, but also to sit at the head table during Taylor’s appearance.
“I am sure that she had nothing to do with it,” said Keen, “but it was another example of how her just being there, speaking out on AIDS, prompted the Press Club to take a step forward, toward recognizing the gay press as one of its own.”
Keen recalls meeting Taylor at the reception and thanking the celebrity for her work. “Despite her superstardom,” Keen said, “she really was genuinely warm and engaging.”
Keen News Service, which provides national LGBT legal and political content to gay media outlets, offered a brief news story. And even though Taylor’s death may not fall squarely into one of those subjects, “Her political impact during the early years of the AIDS crisis made her a person of considerable interest and note,” Keen said. “Her loss was a notable one politically.”
For other journalists, the loss was personal. “The most beautiful and glamorous movie star of all time commanded the kind of clout that drew international attention, inspired others to follow suit and revolutionized public opinion. Without her help, I can’t imagine that we would be where we are in terms of education, research, and treatment of HIV infections," wrote David Webb in a tribute published in South Florida Gay News and the Dallas Voice.
Or as Dana Miller, who knew Elizabeth Taylor and her children personally, wrote in a column for Frontiersweb: "There was never a time she wasn't famous. The beauty, the roles and the husbands were legendary. When she floated into a room, she was the only star. It was a small, connected group at AIDS Project Los Angeles led by Bill Misenheimer that got her involved. She had long ago realized the power of her celebrity.”
As Taylor said earlier on in the AIDS epidemic, “Celebrity is not something that comes without responsibility. If I can help further a worthwhile cause simply by lending my voice, I feel that it is my place to do so.”
[Editor’s Note: Reporter Chuck Colbert is a correspondent for Keen News Service. Writer David Webb is also a contributor to Press Pass Q.)
IN THE NEWS: Washington Blade revamps a year after rising from Window Media ashes
Fresh is the word this spring at the Washington Blade – new logo, new print and layout design, a media enhanced website and smart phone application, and expanded distribution. The Blade has also hired a new social media director.
The Blade’s comprehensive revamping, which comes a year and a half after the newspaper’s sudden shuttering, is no small entrepreneurial feat. The Wall Street Journal took note in an April 26 story, reporting the price tag for the overhaul of $50,000 was paid for through company earnings.
There’s a back story, too. “We have big plans for our growth,” said editor Kevin Naff during a recent telephone interview. “But we are doing things slowly and methodically and as we can afford them properly. We could have had an app and a fancy new website a year ago. But I’d rather be third in line than rush something out the door that doesn’t quite meet the needs of our readers.”
Indeed the Blade’s resurrection is an inspiring LGBT media success story. To recap, the publication had recently celebrated its 40th anniversary a month earlier. But on the morning of Nov. 16, 2009, staffers found the Blade’s office doors locked and learned, without any warning, that Window Media LLC, the parent company, had filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Immediately, a dozen employees volunteered without pay to continue publishing the paper under the name D.C. Agenda.
As Blade publisher Lynne Brown told the Wall Street Journal, “They threw us out on a Monday and that Friday we printed.”
Like its predecessor, the D.C. Agenda covered local Beltway and national news until April 2010 when the newsweekly resumed using the name Washington Blade.
The change occurred after a new corporate entity, Brown Naff Pitts Omnimedia, acquired from bankruptcy court all Blade assets, including the name, all trademarks and copyrights, and the entire 40-year archive. The purchase price was $15,000.
The paper returned to local ownership.
With its name back, management’s focus was all on print. “When we relaunched the Blade a year ago, all our resources were devoted to the print product and to getting the word out about the brand’s comeback,” Naff explained. “This year, we had a year to build, and it was really time for us to put a focus on social media and mobile data, so that’s what we did."
Consequently, the Blade hired Phil Reese as social media director. Reese, co-host of the popular LGBT political podcast, “Same-Sex Sunday,” had worked previously with and written for the Bilerico Project, Feast of Fun and Out & About Illinois.
Changes in editorial content will come now that Reese is on staff. “But not in the way we think of content,” Naff said. “We’re going to be aggressive in tweeting on the official Washington Blade [Twitter] account, making sure we are engaging with readers.” There will also be more frequent but shorter updates on the website, he said. Altogether, the idea here is that enhanced social media empowers readers to share content through their own network of friends and family across a host of different platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Digg and Buzz. The Blade now has two mobile apps – one for the Android platform, the other for iPhone.
In other recent changes, the Blade’s distribution of its weekly print issue [circulation 15,000) has expanded from beyond metropolitan Washington, D.C., which includes suburban Maryland and Northern Virginia, to Baltimore, Philadelphia and Rehoboth, Del.
In November of 2010, the Blade announced the formation of a nonprofit education and research foundation, partly to explore the role of nonprofit media in the future of journalism for LGBT outlets.
All that is new at the Washington Blade raises a question. Is there a lesson here for the future of gay media?
“I get asked this all the time,” said Naff. “How can you start a newspaper in this economy in an industry so beaten down with layoffs and closings? Those problems are very common among mainstream metropolitan papers because they are saddled with huge debt, pensions to pay for and old buildings that have to be maintained.”
But for LGBT media, “We can be much more nimble,” Naff explained. "Without the overhead, we can respond faster to technological changes and cut our costs much more easily."
Naff also credits the Blade’s success to a “loyal audience that has stayed with us.” At the end of the day, “It’s a marathon, not a sprint,” he said. “The key is being fiscally prudent and putting out a really good product that people want to read.”
— Chuck Colbert
San Fran paper raises the BAR, celebrates 40th birthday
The Bay Area Reporter reached a significant milestone last month, celebrating its 40th anniversary. The San Francisco– based newspaper – popularly known as BAR – also holds claim as the oldest, continuously published LGBT press outlet in the country.
To mark the occasion, the newsweekly did a number of things, including the unveiling of its first ever Best of the Gays Readers Choice Awards, with winners announced in a variety of categories: food, arts and nightlife, outdoor and sporting, city living, and sex and romance.
The 80-page, 40th anniversary issue [dated April 7) introduced some changes – a slight redesign with new fonts in two sections and in one case, a new name, Arts and Culture.
Earlier this year, BAR updated its website, allowing readers to post and comment immediately on stories via online social media.
A year ago, the publication launched a monthly, glossy nightlife guide, BARtab, edited by assistant editor Jim Provenzano.
In celebration, the newly opened LGBT History Museum in the Castro neighborhood hosted a small weeklong special exhibit and slideshow of BAR historic front pages.
Local political leaders paid tribute to the paper at the museum on April 7, with other well wishers toasting BAR at Toad Hall Bar two days later.
Cynthia Laird is news editor, with Roberto Friedman serving as arts editor. Thomas E. Horn has been publisher since the death of founder Bob Ross in 2003. Laird and Horn offered observations on the role of the paper in the community and media industry.
“I see BAR holding a pivotal place in the national LGBT media landscape,” said Laird. “We consistently deliver original content to our readers, and cover one of the gayest cities and areas in the country. Since I started at the paper 15 years ago, I have noticed that mainstream media have covered LGBT issues with more regularity than they used to. But I firmly believe that there is a critical need for the LGBT press, as we are often able to add a layer of context that is often missing from mainstream coverage.”
For his part, publisher Horn stated, “BAR has never rested on the laurels of being an award-winning publication, but has continuously tried to be on the cutting edge of the industry. We pledge to you, our readers, and to our loyal advertisers, to maintain the depth and quality of our reporting on issues that you care about. We will not let you down.”
The first issue of the Bay Area Reporter hit the streets of San Francisco on April 2, 1971. Founder Ross hand-pasted the pages, copied them and delivered the publication from his 1969 Ford Mustang to local bars, located primarily in the gay enclaves of the Castro, Polk Gulch, and South of Market districts.
With a print run today of 29,000, the publication is distributed throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. The paper launched its website www.ebar.com in the fall of 2005.
But early on, BAR was not taken seriously. And yet over time the paper became known as the insider gay news source around town, if not as a San Francisco institution. Throughout four decades, the paper’s mix of humor, analysis, letters to the editor, arts and sports coverage, political advocacy and reporting tapped into local sentiment and helped to set the tone for the LGBT civil rights and liberation movement worldwide.
To be sure, journalists from the newspaper have reported from the frontlines of gay history, covering everything from the 1978 assassination of city supervisor Harvey Milk to the AIDS epidemic and controversial gay bathhouse closures of the 1980s to same-sex marriage in California, with the passage of Proposition 8 and the Perry v. Schwarzenegger lawsuit and trial in US district court.
As publisher Horn noted in an anniversary editorial, “It is said that newspapers are the first draft of history. The BAR has played a seminal role in writing that draft. It remains our mission.”
BAR is also known for its columnists, including its most famous political one, Harvey Milk, before his election to public office, and Wayne Friday, whose “Politics and Poker” was a must-read for anyone following LGBT-related developments in city hall and in Sacramento, the state capital. Friday retired in 2005.
Assistant editor Matthew S. Bajko is the current political columnist. Assistant editor Seth Hemmelgarn writes a column about issues related to marriage equality in California and elsewhere.
In congratulating the iconic paper on its 40th anniversary, state Sen. Mark Leno, a San Francisco Democrat, voiced praise: “The BAR has literally captured some of the most momentous and fascinating events in our continuing struggle to secure justice and equality for LGBT Californians.”
— Chuck Colbert
California’s last LGBT bookstore shuts its doors
Have gay bookstores in California really gone the way of the dodo bird?
A Different Light closed its store in San Francisco’s Castro in late April. And while some lamented the apparent demise of the last LGBT bookstore in the Golden State that was selling new books, others questioned the accuracy of media accounts that perpetuated this conclusion.
“None of the stories I have seen have pointed out that there is another bookstore in the Castro – Books Inc. on Market Street – which remains popular with locals, probably had just as many LGBT titles as Different Light did on its shelves, and actually prompted itself and its monthly lineup of guest authors, both queer and straight,” noted Matthew Bajko, assistant editor of the Bay Area Reporter. “It offers a book buyers’ club and is where I shop.”
A Different Light [ADL) Bookstore closed its West Hollywood store in 2009; while Lambda Rising, a chain of gay bookstores that had locations in Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Virginia and Rehoboth Beach, Del., shut down early last year. The Oscar Wilde Bookshop in New York City’s Greenwich Village closed in 2009.
While online sales have certainly placed traditional bookstores at a distinct disadvantage over the last decade, former ADL employee Tommi Avicolli Mecca said mismanagement caused the Castro store’s ultimate demise.
“I and other staff members quit in 2000 when the new owners took over,” he wrote on his Facebook page and in a comment he posted to the San Francisco Chronicle’s website after the newspaper reported on the store’s closing. “They destroyed what Richard Labonté and all of us created. They cut out most of the literature by people of color, gutted the amazing collection of zines and publications from all over the world, reduced lesbian literature to near-nothing and cut the hours of an employee with AIDS so that he wouldn't be eligible for benefits anymore. After we all left, the store ceased to be a place for the community. As far as I am concerned, ADL died in 2000. I mourned it then. I cannot mourn what it became.”
Stampp Corbin, publisher of San Diego LGBT Weekly, said the closing of these bookstores is not a reflection on LGBT consumers. This trend is simply about dollars and cents.
“I just think it’s business,” he said. “The business model was no longer valid so people stopped coming.”
Corbin acknowledged LGBT bookstores were crucially important in their heyday. They often doubled as de facto community centers where people could gather, organize and socialize. “They were the first LGBT centers before there were gay and lesbian centers,” he said. “These bookstores existed and people knew you could get information about events.”
Mecca pointed out he and his ADL colleagues allowed activists to meet in the store’s backyard or in their upstairs office, hosted numerous LGBT writers, held conferences, worked with local charities and did “so many other wonderful things” to “foster community and create and nurture queer culture.”
“We knew that we were more than a bookstore, more than a money-making operation,” he said. “I am proud of the legacy I left behind when I quit in 2000. I just hope that it's never forgotten.”
— Michael K. Lavers
Creators of XY magazine and A and F Quarterly now bring you B
B magazine, the creation of former XY magazine editor Peter Ian Cummings and Savas Abadsidis, editor of Abercrombie and Fitch's A and F Quarterly, will publish its inaugural issue in June.
The magazine, which is aimed at gay men ages 18-35, promises to feature articles about politics, art, music and fashion.
The tagline for B is, “A magazine for the future.” Visitors to the magazine's web site – www.bmag.us – which features an astral background and funky graphics, will see a different approach to gay media.
Cummings and Abadsidis are also launching All American Guys, a magazine featuring erotic but G-rated photos of hunky male models.
Cummings says he is hoping for a diverse readership for B. “It's more about a way of thinking than a certain demographic,” Cummings said. “We're trying to represent a wide section of America.”
Cummings laments what he refers to as the “self- congratulatory nature in gay life now. There's not enough thinking going on. We want to stand up for the right to express yourself sexually.”
Cummings believes the gay movement emphasizes sexual repression instead of the freedom to be who you are, without apologies. A lot of people don't want gay marriage, he notes.
“We reject that as a compromise,” Cummings said, explaining he does not fear criticism from members of the LGBT community. “If they want to call us porny or slutty, let them.”
B magazine will give a voice to ordinary folks, in the same way XY provided a forum for gay teens to express themselves in print, he said.
XY was founded by Cummings in 1996 and stopped publication in 2007. The magazine contained political and cultural articles, pictures and submissions by readers.
B promises to be similar in tone and style, yet will feature celebrity interviews. However, Cummings notes that the magazine will not be dominated by them.
The staff for B includes editor at large Nathan Smorynski; Brandon Alexander, a former XY editor; Keith Carr, who serves as associate publisher; Eriq Chang, who served as the original fashion and photo editor at XY; Kenshi Westover, an artist, stylist, and correspondent; photographer Steven Underhill, who shot several XY covers; and James Patrick Dawson, who also photographed for XY.
Cummings believes the death of gay media has been exaggerated. He is confident B can succeed, pointing to the fact that the magazine has 3,000 fans on Facebook.
“There is a tremendous market for the ideas involved,” Cummings said, adding his staff of writers and editors are a draw for readers. “We're all pretty well known and we all have our own followers.”
Cummings hopes to use different types of paper in the production of B. It's this unique aesthetic that will distinguish B from competitors, he said.
“We're going to make the magazine a beautiful item that people want to own,” Cummings noted.
Cummings doesn't want to put out B on a more frequent basis, due to the intense pressures of publishing monthly. B will distribute 20,000 copies quarterly. Numbers may expand, depending on the reader reception.
— Joe Siegel
will return next month.
GUEST COMMENTARY: Local LGBT publications are king, not blogs or websites
[Mark Segal, publisher of the Philadelphia Gay News, is the nation’s most-award-winning commentator in LGBT media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. This commentary originally appeared in the April 29, 2011, issue of PGN.)
The king of LGBT media is your local LGBT publication. Just like the one you’re reading right now. That might come as a surprise to those who think that websites are where all the traffic is. This is not, by any means, a negative statement on LGBT blogs. They are fun, informative and some provide a good service.
But here are the facts and this is where reality hits the road. Most of the blogs, like local LGBT newspapers, were started with a purpose – some political, some fun and some to further a viewpoint. But few were started with actual journalists or writing professionals, and fewer with media business savvy.
They operate with very little expenses and very few employees. You would think that with low overhead and few salaries to pay, they’d make enough money to survive and thrive. But many of them keep their material fresh with volunteers or by pumping the comments section.
The real problem is that, with little staff and volunteers, what they generated for the most part were the same stories being run by most other websites. They might have a different angle on the story, but it still was the same. The other problem was lack of sales to allow them the time to develop to sustain themselves in a changing business environment. It’s not easy to have a business plan when your platform is constantly changing.
But you cannot underestimate the impact of a lack of professional standards, which can lead to legal problems. This was not only a problem for websites: It was also a contributing factor in the demise of Window Media, the former parent company of Washington Blade and HX magazine.
The publication you are reading now, along with Bay Area Reporter in San Francisco, OutFront Colorado, Dallas Voice, GA Voice, Frontiers in LA and a few others, all have something in common. We’ve been around long enough that our communities know and trust us and know what to expect from a professional publication. We are also a vibrant part of the community, something hard to do in a virtual world. All those publications mentioned have more than 10 full-time employees apiece, which adds to the local economy. Some of us have more full-time employees than the national blogs combined. Many of them are seasoned veterans. Additionally, local publications not only have a dedicated readership of print, they also have those materials on the web. Therefore, savvy advertisers know they could get the best of both worlds by advertising with their local publications. And that is what they continue to do. And national advertisers are learning that local gay publications and their respective websites bring buyers to their doors.
This column comes as news of the demise of Queerty, one of my favorite sites, breaks, and talk that two others of national renown are considering closing their portals. That continued evolution also has print attempting to find its niche on the web. The New York Times is trying one way while The Wall Street Journal tries another. Web media, LGBT or mainstream, is now the most competitive media there is since literally thousands are created each day. Here’s a detail that few seem to realize: It’s a competitive world out there and the most competitive business environment is not print but the web. There is no competition for LGBT local print media from the web. The web competes with itself.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR:
[What’s your opinion? We’d like to know. Send your letters to editor@PressPassQ.com. Letters should be kept to a maximum of 250 words and may be edited for length and clarity.)
EDITOR’S NOTE: Press Pass Q is now on Facebook and Twitter. You can “Like” Press Pass Q at http://www.facebook.com/PressPassQ and follow us @presspassq. Join our online community and feel free to give us your feedback and make your comments online.
TRANSITIONS AND MILESTONES
[Editor’s note: Are there important changes going on at your publication? E-mail the information to editor@PressPassQ.com.)
ROBERT AMES, formerly of Hachette Filipacchi Media, has been named chief performance officer at HERE MEDIA INC. Additionally, JOSH ROSENZWEIG, formerly the company’s senior vice president of integrated marketing, was appointed senior vice president of original programming and development.
BALTIMORE OUTLOUD was voted the Best of LGBT Maryland 2011 in the Newspaper/Publication category, beating out four other publications nominated, and came in second in the LGBT/Friendly Business category. In addition, managing editor STEVE CHARING was chosen as LGBT Person of the Year. The survey is conducted by RGroup, Maryland’s largest LGBT social group.
BLADE CALIFORNIA, based in Long Beach, Calif., entered its 20th year of publication in April.
LEAH CAGLE has been named associate editor of arts and entertainment at Charlotte, N.C.-based Q NOTES.
DAVID MAGAZINE, based in Atlanta, will be expanding into South Florida. That was announced by publisher MATT NEUMANN, who also publishes Atlanta-based SOUTHERN VOICE.
THE EMPTY CLOSET, based in Rochester, N.Y., celebrated its 40th anniversary on Feb. 27.
FENUXE MAGAZINE, based in Atlanta, celebrated its 1-year anniversary on April 21.
GAY CHICAGO entered into its 35th year with its April 6 issue.
GAY CITY NEWS, based in New York City, won numerous awards from the New York Press Association’s 2010 Better Newspaper Contest. The newspaper took first place in advertising excellence; second place for best news or feature stories, editorials and best use of color; and third place in crime, police and courts coverage.
GA VOICE, based in Atlanta, and the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau have formed a strategic partnership to create DESTINATION: GAY ATLANTA, a travel guide for LGBT visitors. The newspaper also celebrated its first anniversary with its March 18 issue.
HERNDON GRADDICK has been named senior director of media programs for the GAY & LESBIAN ALLIANCE AGAINST DEFAMATION. Additionally, ROSS MURRAY was named GLAAD’s director of religion, faith and values.
KEVIN HOPPER has resigned as publisher of MARK MAGAZINE and FLORIDA AGENDA in order to focus on the expansion of MARK’S LIST across the country. BOBBY BLAIR assumes the role of publisher. Hopper will remain executive editor while assuming the role of national sales director.
IN TORONTO MAGAZINE celebrated its first anniversary with a party on May 5.
PAUL MCMAHON, a former writer for Boston-based BAY WINDOWS and now-defunct GAY COMMUNITY NEWS, died of leukemia on March 31. He was 78.
OUT ON THE COAST magazine, based in Roseland, Fla., has shut its doors after 8 years. Publisher LEE A. NEWELL II cited a lack of advertisers as the reason for the publication’s demise.
OUTFRONT COLORADO, based in Denver, celebrated its 35th anniversary with its April 6 issue. The publication also welcomed a new editorial team. HOLLY HATCH is managing editor of the print edition and NIC GARCIA is senior managing editor and web editor.
TRIS REID-SMITH stepped down as editor of London-based PINK PAPER.COM. He has also been editor of GT magazine, owned by MILLIVRES PROWLER GROUP, which also owns Pink Paper.
DON RUSSELL, graphic designer with New Orleans-based AMBUSH MAGAZINE, died March 10 from a massive heart attack. He was 64.
JOSUE SANTIAGO stepped down as editor of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based GENRE LATINO magazine. He will continue as a contributing writer. BOB GRAMATGES is the new editor. Also, writer VIXEN ARAUJO is leaving the publication to focus on his career in the health industry. The magazine also celebrated its fifth anniversary with its April issue.
RICHARD SCHNEIDER, editor and publisher of the Boston-based GAY & LESBIAN REVIEW, received the Triangle Publisher Leadership Award at a reception in April in New York City.
SOUTH FLORIDA GAY NEWS, based in Wilton Manors, Fla., entered into an advertising agreement with the Florida Marlins baseball team.
UNICORN BOOTY, an LGBT social media community, reached over 50,000 users as it celebrated its first anniversary in April.
THE BULLETIN BOARD
ON THE WEB At the Press Pass Q website - www.PressPassQ.com - you'll find back issues and subscription information. Also, at the Q Syndicate website - www.qsyndicate.com - you'll find up-to-date information on the 12 columns and features we distribute to gay and lesbian media: A Couple of Guys, Bitter Girl, Book Marks, Deep Inside Hollywood, Editorial Cartoons, Now Playing, Out of Town, The OutField, Political IQ, Q Puzzle, Q Scopes and Sex Talk. For information about subscribing to Q Syndicate content, write to email@example.com or call toll-free 888-615- 7003.
DO YOU HAVE AN ANNOUNCEMENT for the Bulletin Board? Are you trying to get your work published? Looking for job applicants? Promoting a special project? Press Pass Q is now distributed to almost 2,000 working professionals in the gay and lesbian press. Bulletin Board announcements are just a dollar [U.S.) per word per insertion, paid up front. Send a check payable to Rivendell Media, 1248 Route 22 West, Mountainside, NJ 07092.
Publisher: Todd Evans, todd@PressPassQ.com
CONTRIBUTORS TO THIS ISSUE
CHUCK COLBERT is a freelance journalist based in Cambridge, Mass. He is a longtime contributor to the National Catholic Reporter and covered the crisis of clerical sex-abuse in the Boston archdiocese. Previously a senior reporter and columnist for the former In Newsweekly, he is a contributor to Keen News Service, Boston Spirit Magazine and Northampton, Mass.-based The Rainbow Times. Also, he has written for major mainstream daily newspapers and magazines, including the Boston Globe, Boston Herald, Dallas Morning News, Philadelphia Inquirer, San Francisco Chronicle, and the Washington Post. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FRED KUHR is an editor, reporter, performer and personal trainer based in Toronto. He has written for the Advocate, AdWeek, Toronto-based Xtra, and Boston Spirit Magazine. He has also served as editor of now-defunct publications In Newsweekly [based in Boston) and Out in the Mountains [based in Vermont). He has served as a news analyst on the Fox News Channel and CBC Radio, as well as other media outlets. Fred, a self-described social media whore, has been rated one of the top Twitterers of "American Idol" and "So You Think You Can Dance."
MICHAEL K. LAVERS is the National News Editor for EDGE Publications. His work has appeared in the Fire Island News, the Guide, the Village Voice and other LGBT and mainstream publications around the world. He has also provided commentaries on LGBT issues to the BBC, “The Brian Lehrer Show” on WNYC in New York, “La Razón” in Spain and other media outlets. He also blogs at Boy in Bushwick, which can be found at www.bushwickboy.blogspot.com.
JOE SIEGEL is a freelance journalist based in Rhode Island. He has written for several New England-based LGBT publications, including In Newsweekly, EDGE Providence, Options and The Rainbow Times. In addition, he has been a reporter for the Attleboro, Mass.-based Sun Chronicle newspaper for the past 8 years. He can he reached at email@example.com.
PRESS PASS Q is an e-mail newsletter published by Rivendell Media and distributed free each month to anyone involved with or interested in the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender press. If you are not currently receiving this newsletter via e-mail, you can add your name to our mailing list at www.PressPassQ.com.
To ensure receipt of the newsletter, all subscribers should add editor@PressPassQ.com to their address books in light of more aggressive spam filters that might screen out Press Pass Q.
All materials published in Press Pass Q are [c)2011 Rivendell Media and are not intended for publication elsewhere. Feel free, however, to forward this newsletter to any individuals or lists who you think should see it.