PRESS PASS Q
A Newsletter and Trade Publication for the LGBT Media Professional

AUGUST 2011 [Vol. 13, No. 5)
A Publication of Rivendell Media

Celebrating 12 years of serving our community of journalists

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Feature: A New York coverage state of mind: LGBT media outlets across the country had different reasons for covering new marriage law
Sidebar: NY marriage stories needed hard data, and a Larry Kramer correction
In The News: South Florida Gay News launches First Amendment lawsuit; North Carolina’s QNotes celebrates 25th anniversary; Bay Area Reporter banks on its 40th anniversary; Baltimore reaches out to LGBT newspapers with targeted ad campaign
Transitions and Milestones
Bulletin Board
Staff
Contributors to This Issue
Contact Us

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FEATURE: A New York coverage state of mind: LGBT media outlets across the country had different reasons for covering new marriage law
by Chuck Colbert

Wedding bells for same-sex couples chimed across New York on Sunday, July 24, as the state’s Marriage Equality Act took effect at the stroke of midnight. Immediately, from Niagara Falls to New York City, a rush of couples married — under the watchful eye of mainstream and LGBT media outlets.

Indeed, the advent of marriage equality in the Empire State was a media phenomenon, with extensive coverage from Sunday’s New York Times to national TV network broadcasts that evening.

Certainly, achieving same-sex marriage through the legislative process was a big win for the LGBT community, especially after similar attempts earlier this year fizzled in Maryland and Rhode Island.

So how did LGBT outlets cover wedding day in New York?

Among LGBT outlets, New York City-based Gay City News provided the most extensive coverage. “It’s important to understand there was going to be media everywhere,” said associate editor Duncan Osborne. Consequently, “Any news outlet's ability to differentiate its coverage from anybody else’s was going to be close to zero.”

For mainstream media, Osborne added, it was one-day event. “So what you saw over and over were pictures of couples, accompanied by brief descriptions, how long they were together, reasons for getting married, and some mention of the opposition,” he said. “After Monday, the story was over."

But GCN, a biweekly newspaper, enjoyed the benefit of time. Although the publication posted initial coverage on the web, Osborne said with two weeks lead time, “We were able to pull together a far more comprehensive look at marriage, not just what happened that day, but what does it mean for couples, the opposition — what do they do? And what do the advocates say about how they won the vote?”

GCN’s August 3 issue is the result of that labor.

In one piece, Osborne reported on how gay organizations outspent the opposition by more than three to one million dollars. Osborne also profiled a longtime local gay activist, vocally critical of the community’s focus on marriage at the expense of other social justice causes.

Another piece, by Sam Spokony, detailed the new law’s religious exemptions and the coordinated lobbying effort led by the newly formed coalition group, New Yorkers United for Marriage, both of which were key to the marriage win.

Yet another piece, by Andy Humm, recounted a Midtown protest rally of more than 5,000 people, including members of the anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church. Humm also reported on concerns among progressives that behind the scenes, political deals were cut by the Cuomo administration in order to garner Republican votes.

Sure enough, GCN’s crescendo of marriage-equality news boosted ad revenue, enabling the publication’s sales staff to push its wedding issue, which included a “Love & Marriage” special section that ran 60 pages of ads — a doubling of advertising pages.

“That issue [July 20, a few days before enactment] was a revenue record-setter, exceeding more than 70 thousand dollars,” said publisher Troy Masters. Two weeks later, the Aug. 3 issue ran the same size special wedding section; and it was almost as big. “Between the two issues, revenue was extreme for us. It was like we had three pride issues in one single month.” Masters said GCN will continue publishing the wedding special section into early fall.

Todd Evans, chief executive officer of Rivendell Media, a gay media ad placement firm, told Crain’s New York Business that he has seen a 25 percent increase in request for proposals for New York publications since the marriage bill became law. [Evans is also publisher of Press Pass Q.)

Locally, GCN was not alone in reporting the marriage- equality story. EDGE publications, with online portals in New York and Fire Island, also covered the story. Michael K. Lavers, EDGE’s national news editor, said the publication’s approach initially focused on developments in Albany, the state capital, leading up to the legislature’s historic vote on the marriage bill. Then on Sunday, from Fire Island to Manhattan, Lavers said he interviewed town clerks and couples getting married. He also attended a wedding reception for married couples at New York City’s LGBT Community Center. [Lavers is also a Press Pass Q contributor.)

Like GCN, EDGE has seen ad revenues rise nationwide, specifically “increased ads promoting wedding destinations,” said Todd Paschen, vice president of sales for EDGE Media Network.

EDGE posted its coverage on a network of nearly two-dozen portals in cities across the country because gay marriage in New York is “a game changer, said Lavers. “It proved that ‘yes, we can get this done'” despite “all the differences in the movement. That alone is significant.”

Washington Blade editor Kevin Naff agreed. The marriage win in New York is “hugely significant,” he said. “It’s not just that Gov. Cuomo took such a visible and leading role, even flipping Republican votes. We are already seeing the impact on other Democratic governors who were fence sitters on this issue of marriage,” referring to Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley’s recent announcement that he would introduce the marriage bill in the 2012 session. “Clearly, he has taken a page out of Cuomo’s playbook.”

The Blade covered New York marriage equality through a local-angle lens. The publication featured a story on D.C. couples planning to marry there.

The Blade was well positioned to provide coverage. “We were prescient,” said Naff. "We were a media sponsor for New York City Pride, something we had not done before.”

A few days before the Pride parade trekked down Fifth Avenue, Gov. Cuomo signed the marriage bill into law but with a 30-day waiting period before it took effect. The timing enabled the Blade to run a single-image cover and story devoted to a lesbian couple planning to marry. “We don’t often do that,” said Naff.

To be sure, New York’s same-sex marriage yarn resonated well beyond the Northeast. Dana Rudolph, a correspondent for Keen News Service, wrote about the effect New York’s new law might have in other states.

In the Midwest, New York’s wedding day was the top story for Windy City Times, including a front-page picture of New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg officiating at the wedding of one of his aides. “It was the biggest story of the week impacting our Chicago LGBT community,” said Tracy Baim, publisher and executive editor. “The story gives a context for what Illinois still needs to achieve.” Baim was referring to the state’s recently enacted civil union law.

On the West Coast, Cynthia Laird, editor of San Francisco’s Bay Area Reporter, said, “When New York passed its marriage equality bill, people in the Bay Area were ecstatic. I saw the issue as one that many of our readers would be interested in. Many are from New York, or have connections to the state, especially New York City. We did a story in early July about San Francisco couples who planned to go to New York to get married, and I had always known that I wanted a story in the paper the week marriages started.”

Frontiers in LA also closely followed the New York story. Features editor Aaron Drake did a cover story interview with actor Cheyenne Jackson before Outfest and asked him about getting married.

News editor Karen Ocamb, who also blogs at LGBT POV, said Frontiers covered progress of the marriage equality bill, its ups and downs as it moved through the state legislature. “It was kind of déjà vu for our readers since the California legislature passed two marriage bills that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed,” she said. “So the big exciting twist was to see how involved Gov. Cuomo became. On that day we were all New Yorkers.”

[Editor’s note: Press Pass Q contributor Chuck Colbert reported on New York’s same-sex marriage law for Bay Area Reporter, Rainbow Times and Windy City Times.)



SIDEBAR: NY marriage stories needed hard data, and a Larry Kramer correction

The New York same-sex marriage story was a big deal. Not only is New York City “the nation’s media capital,” but also “journalists and New Yorkers are both very self-important people,” said Gay City News editor Paul Schindler.

The mindset goes something like this: If it happens in New York, then it really is significant.

Empire State marriage equality resonated in gay media in several distinctive ways. The state, the nation's third only to California and Texas in population, joins five other states – Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont – and the District of Columbia in allowing same- sex couples to wed.

New York's population of 19 million is greater than the combined total of those five states plus the nation's capital. Accordingly, the number of Americans living in states where same-sex marriage is legal more than doubled – from 16 million to 35 million people.

“That was a compelling data point,” said Cathy Renna, managing partner of Renna Communications, a media relations firm. “Increasingly gay and mainstream media need — want — data,” or hard numbers, she explained. “We are way beyond the time when just personal anecdotes are going to make the case in the media.”

Of course, the hundreds of couples who married put a human face on the story, including the wedding of the mayor of New York’s chief policy advisor to his husband, the city’s commissioner of consumer affairs.

And the sheer numbers of same-sex couples living in the state — 65,303, according to recently released 2010 Census data compiled by the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law — added gravity to the storyline.

Economics was also a piece of the narrative. For example, the Williams Institute estimated that the first year of gay marriage would generate $155 million in wedding-related spending for New York statewide.

“The economic impact was an integral part of the arguments made by advocates and politicians,” said Renna. “That helped to shape and frame coverage in a more sophisticated and nuanced way for more people and reached them in a different way.”

The 1996 Defense of Marriage Act [DOMA) provided another lens for LGBT media's coverage. Outlets were quick to point out that for now those couples who do wed – in any of the states or in D.C. – still do not have federal benefits of marriage because DOMA prohibits federal recognition of same- sex marriage.

Gay media outlets have been vigilant about setbacks to equal rights. And yet marriage equality seems secure in New York. Unlike California and other states with referendum and initiative provisions, New York law does not permit voters to repeal at the ballot box statutes approved by the legislature. Amending the state constitution is a cumbersome process requiring approval twice in two legislative sessions, one before and one after a biennial election of the Assembly. Only then would a proposed amendment banning same-sex marriage go before voters.

Finally, LGBT media played a corrective role to mainstream coverage. When Larry Kramer took issue with a New York Times quotation — and its misuse — of him saying same-sex marriages are “an embarrassment” and "feel-good marriages” without federal government recognition, the playwright and activist responded in a statement distributed via veteran gay journalist Rex Wockner, which many LGBT bloggers and media outlets carried.

As Kramer explained, “Believe me when I say that I very much want to get married to my partner, but only when that marriage is equal to what heterosexual marriages convey by law, the law of the United States, and not just New York State. I did not say, 'Larry Kramer Hates Gay Marriage,' as the Times quote has now allowed many bloggers around the world to revise, rewrite and circulate like mad bulls seeing red.”

— Chuck Colbert



IN THE NEWS: South Florida Gay News launches First Amendment lawsuit

A South Florida gay newspaper has filed a lawsuit against the city of Fort Lauderdale over its ban on photography within proximity of a movie shoot.

Attorneys Norm Kent – who also publishes South Florida Gay News – and Russell Cormican filed the lawsuit against the city and Fort Lauderdale Police Chief Frank Adderley on June 15.

The lawyers, along with the South Florida chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, allege that the ban on photography within several hundred yards of the “Rock of Ages” set in downtown Fort Lauderdale violates the First Amendment.

In their press release that announces the lawsuit, Kent and Cormican claim that Fort Lauderdale police officers had advised “at least two professional photographers” that they “cannot shoot from a public area.”

The lawyers further claim that the policy “precludes anyone from taking pictures, even as they dine at restaurants that are within a city block of [nightclub] Revolution.” “Rock of Ages” producers had rented the nightclub for the shoot. They also hired security guards and off-duty Fort Lauderdale police officers to enforce the ban within the pre-determined radius.

"The police have become unwitting agents of unconstitutionality," said Kent. “Freedom of expression, which includes photography, cannot be controlled by movie studios from Hollywood, even if Tom Cruise is in the film.”

The Fort Lauderdale suit is not the first time that journalists and photographers have crossed paths of law enforcement while covering a story.

Suffolk County, N.Y., police arrested freelance cameraman Phil Datz on July 30 while he tried to film the end of a high-speed chase. Local authorities initially charged Datz with misdemeanor obstruction of governmental administration, but Suffolk County Police Commissioner Richard Dormer announced three days later that the charge had been dropped.

The Poynter Institute lists other examples of media professionals who have been arrested while trying to cover a story — these include photojournalists Jonathan Malat and Tom Aviles, who were taken into custody while covering protests outside the 2008 Republican National Convention in Minneapolis. The think tank also offers advice to media professionals who may face a similar situation.

Back in Fort Lauderdale, city lawyers filed a motion to dismiss the suit. A hearing will take place in late September.

“The fundamental issue is that the City of Fort Lauderdale unlawfully and illegally restricted the rights of photojournalists,” said Kent. “We are seeking a declaratory judgment from the court that the city and its agents acted unconstitutionally, and asking for compensatory damages due to their negligence in threatening the false arrest of citizens who were engaged in lawful conduct.”

— Michael K. Lavers

North Carolina’s QNotes celebrates 25th anniversary

Yet another LGBT publication has reached a significant milestone. Charlotte, N.C.-based QNotes celebrated its silver anniversary this spring.

“We’re 25 years old and that in and of itself is a success story, given an industry where too many people have seen their publications fold and if not fold, face challenges and obstacles,” said editor Matt Comer. “We’re now the oldest continuously published newspaper in North Carolina.”

To celebrate its birthday, QNotes published a 28-page anniversary issue [dated May 14-27). Page one highlighted a spread of 25 front-page covers, with Comer’s feature story chronicling the publication’s two-and-a-half decades long coverage of local LGBT history as “community service.”

As he wrote, “The story of QNotes’ history is about more than its own achievements; its about the community — the people, places and pride.”

For example, Comer continued, “People, like community leader and QNotes’ editor Don King, whose Closet Buster Productions helped to herald new eras of LGBT awareness and public engagement in Charlotte. Places, like Charlotte’s Lesbian & Gay Community Center or Raleigh’s LGBT Center and the decades long push for community organizing for spaces to call our own. Pride, like the series of statewide and local Pride festivals and parades that have grown and spread like wild kudzu across the state.”

The 25-year-old Comer has served as editor for nearly four years.

The anniversary issue also included a piece by Bishop Tonyia M. Rawls, founding pastor of Charlotte’s Unity Fellowship Church, who credited QNotes for its role in building a ministry and community.

“Through advertisements and write-ups on the spiritual, as well as social justice issues,” she wrote, “QNotes played a key role in our introduction [in 2001] to a community that at the time had very few affirming houses of worship and even fewer places for LGBT people of color to gather.”

QNotes’ origins date back to a small and now-defunct newsletter begun in 1983 called “Queen City Notes.” The newsletter ended its run in 1984, with the closing of the non-profit that published it. Two years later, the newsletter was resurrected and began publication as a monthly print newspaper.

In 1989, publisher Jim Yarbrough, the owner of Pride Publishing and Typesetting, Inc., bought the publication. And in 1996, it began distributing every other week.

In May 2006, QNotes merged with Raleigh-based The Front Page, another LGBT publication. The Front Page began publishing in 1979 under longtime publisher and editor Jim Baxter.

And yet the first gay newspaper published in North Carolina was the Free Press [which published from 1975 to 1979). Therefore, even before QNotes' resurrection in 1986, North Carolina enjoyed a decade-long tradition of having a gay publication.

The hard copy of QNotes still comes out twice a month. It has a distribution run of a 20-page print edition – circulation anywhere between 8,000 and 12,000 copies – to North Carolina cities, mainly Charlotte, Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill and Greensboro/Winston-Salem.

A revamped website, at www.goQNotes.com, emphasizes recent headlines and stories, online reporting of the Carolinas, national, and international events and news.

“We update the website almost every day and can keep up-to- date, whereas before, we had to wait for two weeks," said editor Comer.

Readers can also download the current print edition, which has more of a focus on arts and entertainment.

Its origins in the mid-1980s at the height of the AIDS/HIV crisis, QNotes’ most lasting legacy may well be its chronicling of the epidemic.

In reading through QNotes early issues, Comer said, he was struck most by how dramatically the numbers of HIV-infected people rose, jumping from a couple hundred to several thousands.

“At a time that was and largely still is the rural south, with then no Internet even into the early 1990s, community newspapers were for many LGBT people their lifeline to the community,” he said. “Having history [of the AIDS epidemic] documented is important for the local North Carolina community and for our young people in particular. There is a whole group of people whom they will never know and probably never meet who came before them. In very dark times, they were able to trudge along and fight for equality even if they were going to hospital rooms to visit sick and dying friends.”

The future, however, holds a different challenge. North Carolina is now the 10th most populous state, its economic, demographic, and political strength growing. As one measure of the state’s clout, Charlotte will host the 2012 Democratic National Convention — the same year North Carolina voters may well decide a ballot measure that would ban same-sex marriage by amending the state’s constitution.

The LGBT community is growing, too, keeping pace with Charlotte and the state’s expansion, Comer said. “We are becoming a more progressive place.”

All the more reason to have a newspaper with an online presence for the gay community going forward, according to Comer. “We need a way to keep elected officials and other civic, social and media leaders accountable to this growing community of people who have legitimate needs and who support the LGBT community.”

— Chuck Colbert

Bay Area Reporter banks on its 40th anniversary

San Francisco's Bay Area Reporter [BAR) commemorated its 40th Anniversary in June with a special retrospective at the main branch of Union Bank on California Street.

The retrospective exhibit featured memorable covers of the paper, vintage photographs, video footage and critically acclaimed articles from the paper's archives showcased through a historical timeline of LGBT milestones and events over the last four decades. A condensed version of the BAR retrospective video was shown in Bay Area branches to promote the exhibit.

The paper's advertising manager Scott Wazlowski met with the marketing team from the bank and discussed advertising opportunities linked to the 40th anniversary in April and Gay Pride in June, according to General Manager Michael Yamashita.

“Union Bank was interested in being an event sponsor and wanted to include us in their diversity campaign for June, which focused on the LGBT community,” Yamashita said, noting Union Bank partnered with a local PBS affiliate to “recognize local LGBT leaders for their outstanding work.”

Union Bank provided a grant for the exhibit as well as an advertising budget.

The exhibit attracted visitors to the bank and received a warm reception from clients, staff and visitors, Yamashita said.

Union Bank also became one of BAR's advertisers soon after.

“Due to the milestone of 40 years and the timing just before Gay Pride Month, we enjoyed a lot of coverage from print, radio, television, and online outlets,” Yamashita said. “[Publisher) Tom Horn gave many interviews. It was a real boost to our profile and brand, especially since it gave us an opportunity to promote our websites and new nightlife magazine.”

Yamashita feels that over the years the paper's “professionalism” increased in tandem with LGBT political power. BAR has expanded to publish BarTab, a monthly nightlife magazine, and two web sites – ebar.com and bartabsf.com.

Yamashita believes the paper has managed to stay relevant in a changing media landscape. “We confront the issues as they are and do not shy away from challenging individuals and institutions in our community,” Yamashita said. “By focusing on the local community and offering original content not found elsewhere, we've managed to keep readers loyal and engaged. BarTab is geared to a younger demographic and is helping to introduce young readers to the paper. We've increased our distribution points to more neighborhoods as LGBT readers have dispersed into more areas.”

— Joe Siegel

Baltimore reaches out to LGBT newspapers with targeted ad campaign

Memo to Philadelphia: Make room for Baltimore in the LGBT travel market.

Just as the “City of Brotherly [and Sisterly) Love” has reached out to gay travelers, so the “Charm City” has created an advertising campaign designed to highlight Baltimore as an attractive travel destination for gay men and lesbians — and their families.

Visit Baltimore, the official sales and marketing organization for the city, has developed print ads that have run in about half a dozen publications, including Philadelphia Gay News; MetroWeekly and Washington Blade, both located in the nation’s capital; Out in New Jersey; Gay Life Baltimore; Gay City News and Metro Source, both based in New York City; Pittsburgh’s Out newspaper; and the LGBT travel oriented Passport magazine.

Tony Molnar-Strejcek, publisher of Pittsburgh’s Out, said Visit Baltimore has been running ads in his newspaper “for the past three years to great success,” adding, “At first, some of our readers were surprised to see cities like Philadelphia and Baltimore going after their LGBT dollar. We have grown accustomed to seeing cities like Cleveland, Rehoboth Beach and recently the state of Florida directly advertise in Pittsburgh’s Out. Baltimore and Philadelphia reaching out to Pittsburgh’s LGBT community in an aggressive way has been a welcomed and appreciated gesture."

The copy used in the two LGBT specific ads is:

• “There is no city more Divine than Baltimore.”

“Kinda kitschy. Kinda funky. Definitely quirky. And always ready to welcome you with open arms. That’s Baltimore, the town that inspires John Waters – and will absolutely captivate you. Start with the American Visionary Art Museum, where you can gaze upon a larger-than-life statue of Divine, starlet of Hairspray, Polyester and other memorable films. Then explore eclectic neighborhoods like Hampden, Fell’s Point and Federal Hill. Take in a Broadway show, then hit the town for an evening of dinner and drinks in the chic Mount Vernon District, the heart of Baltimore’s thriving gay community.”

• “Baltimore welcomes your family with pride.”

“There are so many surprises for families in Baltimore, even the most energetic kids have a hard time keeping up. You can take them to the dolphin show and the new jellyfish exhibit at the National Aquarium. Then explore dinosaurs at the Maryland Science Center. If they’re not too tuckered out, they can meet the polar bears at the Maryland Zoo, climb a three-story tree house at Port Discovery Children’s Museum, get up close and personal with pop culture icons at Geppi’s Entertainment Museum or ride the rails at the B&O Railroad Museum.”

During a recent telephone interview, Visit Baltimore’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer Sam Rogers said that beyond the city’s traditional markets of Washington, Philadelphia and Central Pennsylvania, “There were other markets that held potential for visitors,” including gay men and lesbians.

Visit Baltimore found, from market research, that while “people knew about the Inner Harbor, crab cakes, Camden Yards, and the Ravens football team, they didn’t know an awful lot about the city and what it had to offer,” he explained.

As a result, Visit Baltimore created a campaign with the theme “Expect the Unexpected.” In exploring possibilities with gay and lesbian travelers, “We saw that a lot of visitors were coming to visit friends and families, but were not necessarily coming because they were inspired to have a leisure visit,” Rogers said. And yet, “We wanted to develop the leisure market.”

Because “Baltimore was recognized as a family destination for the general consumer travel market,” Rogers said, “we decided to take a look at LGBT families.”

For two years now, Visit Baltimore’s two ads specifically targeting LGBT travelers have run as stand-alone one-page advertising in gay publications. There is also an online ad component [http://baltimore.org/lgbt-baltimore).

Better yet, Visit Baltimore developed a family cooperative ad campaign with other travel-related business such as hotels, bed and breakfasts and restaurants, along with local attractions — the Maryland Zoo, National Aquarium and Port Discovery Children’s Museum.

Initially, Rogers said, Visit Baltimore had hoped to work with four to six business. But the response has been “overwhelming,” he said. “We ended up with 18, enabling “us to run four pages of advertising with additional copy, along with the other advertisers representing gay-friendly businesses.”

Back in 2003, the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation [GPTMC) was clearly onto something with its million-dollars-plus campaign, “Philadelphia. Get Your History Straight and Your Nightlife Gay.”

All in all, the ad campaign was groundbreaking in its promotion of the city as a gay-friendly destination.

In coming out as gay friendly, GPTMC wanted to tap into a lucrative market, now estimated at $64.5 billion, the amount gay and lesbian travelers spend in a year.

Currently, Visit Baltimore has an LGBT budget of $100,000.

— Chuck Colbert



PRESSING QUESTIONS: will return next month



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.)



TRANSITIONS AND MILESTONES

[Editor’s note: Are there important changes going on at your publication? E-mail the information to editor@PressPassQ.com.)

A COUPLE OF GUYS, the nationally syndicated comic strip by DAVE BROUSSEAU, will celebrate 15 years of publication in September. The strip takes place in New York City, and to mark the event, the title characters will renew their wedding vows at the Central Park Boathouse, in three strips dated the weeks of September 12, 19 and 26. The characters were previously married in Massachusetts in 2004.

THE ADVOCATE launched a mobile news app, called MOZINE, for Android devices. Powered by ADVOCATE.COM, the app was developed in conjunction with THUMB MEDIA GROUP.

TRACY BAIM, publisher and executive editor of Chicago-based Windy City Media Group, is co-author of the newly published book, “Leatherman: The Legend of Chuck Renslow,” about the prominent Chicago gay activist and entrepreneur.

GEORGIA VOICE, based in Atlanta, won two second-place awards in this year’s Better Newspaper Contest, sponsored by the National Newspaper Association. Deputy editor DYANA BAGBY won second place in the category Best Investigative or In- Depth Story or Series [non-daily circulation 6,000-9,999). Web site THEGAVOICE.COM, spearheaded by web manager RYAN WATKINS, won second place for Best Newspaper Web Site, Non- Daily Division.

ION ARIZONA, based in Phoenix, celebrated its 10th anniversary with its July issue.

ANDREW MERSMANN stepped down as editor in chief of travel- oriented PASSPORT MAGAZINE. He retains the title editor at large.

JASON PARSLEY is the new editor in chief of Wilton Manors, Fla.-based SOUTH FLORIDA GAY NEWS. Previously, he was the newspaper’s managing editor.

JERRY PORTWOOD joins OUT MAGAZINE as managing editor. Previously, he was editor in chief of NEW YORK PRESS, an alternative weekly.

MICHELANGELO SIGNORILE, host of his eponymous radio show on Sirius XM’s OUTQ channel, was one of the NATIONAL LESBIAN AND GAY JOURNALISTS ASSOCIATION’s inductees into its LGBT Journalism Hall of Fame. Also inducted were DON MICHAELS, who was the very first paid employee of THE BLADE, the precursor of THE WASHINGTON BLADE. He eventually became publisher.

ZEUS: THE GAY MAN’S HANDBOOK, based in Chicago, has added three new writers. They include international wine expert KRUNCH KRETSCHMAR, sex coach ROCKY LABARRE and adult- entertainment blogger DIESEL WASHINGTON.



THE BULLETIN BOARD

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THE STAFF

Publisher: Todd Evans, todd@PressPassQ.com
Editor: Fred Kuhr, editor@PressPassQ.com
Associate Editor: Dave Brousseau, dave@QSyndicate.com
Contributing Writers: Duane Booth, Derrik Chinn, Chuck Colbert, Tanya Gulliver, Liz Highleyman, Michael K. Lavers, Matthew Pilecki, Joe Siegel, David Webb



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 crciiiund@aol.com.

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 joesiegel@cox.net.



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