GLAAD to start rating movie studios on political donations

GLAAD adds another metric by which they measure media companies.

In a new announcement, GLAAD unveiled a plan to get started rank film studios based on annual political donations, public advocacy, and global LGBTQ+ content. The new rating system comes in response to Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill and the controversy surrounding Disney giving money to many politicians who support it.

The new ratings will feed into GLAAD’s annual Studio Accountability Index, a study that examines LGBTQ+ representation in films released by the eight major motion picture studios (Lionsgate, Paramount, Sony, STX, United Artists, Universal, Warner Bros and Disney).

The Studio Responsibility Index previously assigned ratings based on the quantity, quality, and diversity of representation. New scoring rubrics include:

-Donations to elected officials, political action committees and anti-LGBTQ+ candidates.

– Public advocacy efforts around pro-LGBTQ+ and anti-LGBTQ+ legislation.

-LGBTQ+ inclusive advertisements or public communications, particularly outside of Pride month.

-Actions taken to support LGBTQ+ titles from an international studio.

“No company that chooses silence over alliance should receive high scores from LGBTQ+ organizations as nearly 200 anti-LGBTQ+ bills advance in states across the country, often targeting transgender youth” , GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said in a statement. “Companies must be held accountable for funding politicians who harm LGBTQ+ people, including their own employees, and for inaction on legislation they can help defeat.”

Ellis specifically cited Disney as an example.

“LGBTQ+ inclusion isn’t just what happens on screen,” she said. “The Walt Disney Company and other media companies must take immediate action in Florida and other states. Entertainment and media companies cannot profit from our stories and remain silent about laws that discriminate against us.

Disney scrambled to find ways to save face after first drawing criticism for donating to lawmakers supporting the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, and drawing even more criticism after the CEO of the company sent a note saying that the best way the company could fight bills like this was not through money or direct action, but through the production of “inspiring content “.

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