The list of credentialed blogs to cover the Democratic National Convention was released this evening and Bilerico Project was denied credentials. Contributor Pam Spaulding's home blog, Pam's House Blend, was one of two gay blogs issued credentials. The other blog? Towleroad.
Towleroad is not known for racial diversity, trans inclusion, or its lesbian audience. It is a site for wealthy gay white men -- the HRC demographic. Their advertising info reads "News. Entertainment. Gossip. Media. Art. Life. Most Unique Users: 500,000; 95% male; 85% US; 52% earn $75,000+; 40% earn $100,000+" Where was "politics" in that description? Did they pick up on the lack of women? What about the lack of average American salaries? Towleroad's readers' average salary is almost double the median annual household income. Household. Not one person.
It's not that I have anything against Andy Towle and the product he's built. It's damn good and he definitely has an audience; hell, I'm a regular reader. I am, after all, his target audience. But when was the last time you saw serious in-depth political coverage on Towleroad or committed coverage of an issue from multiple angles or guest posts from members of Congress and Presidential candidates? Bilerico has brought our readers all of that and more.
At Bilerico Project we're committed to the diversity others give lip service. We asked for credentials for myself, Jerame Davis, Serena Freewomyn, Marti Abernathey, Monica Roberts and Eric Marcus. Two trans women from middle America (one African-American), two gay activists from Indiana, a lesbian feminist from Arizona, and a New York Times bestselling author and former television news producer from New York.
Pam's House Blend also promoted diversity in their application by getting credentials for all of her regulars. Towleroad has a niche - upperclass white gay men; it's not that diverse. Maybe there are too many letters for the DNC to spell LGBT. When TBP first launched, Managing Editor Alex Blaze would often use the line, "Not everything queer is marriage, martinis and Madonna." Maybe we should have stuck with the big 3 Ms after all.
I'm wondering what the selection process was for DNC credentials though. To start with there are only two gay blogs who got credentialed (unless you count Americablog and he's more politics; gay is a sidenote). I realize that Towleroad is a quality site with tons of regular readers - their traffic kicks our ass completely.
However, Towleroad represents a certain segment of our community only - but it's the segment that's more likely to donate to the Democratic party. Is that what this is about? I thought the idea was to get some diversity. Plenty of LGBT blogs applied other than us. We got tossed two bones - and one is only for some of us.
What was the selection criteria other than traffic?
If you'd like to help us attempt to get the DNC to change their mind, check out the original post about our rejection at The Bilerico Project and join the conversation and plotting.