ABC Tops Networks in New GLAAD LGBT ‘Responsibility Index’

Today, GLAAD released a first-ever “Network Responsibility Index” which grades the major TV networks on “the quantity, quality and diversity of images of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people” in their programming, says the media watchdog. GLAAD examined 4,693 hours of prime time programming from June 1, 2006 to May 31, 2007.

BsAccording to GLAAD, “Each hour was reviewed for any on-screen major or minor LGBT representations. Based on the overall quantity, quality and diversity of these representations, a grade was assigned to each network: Excellent, Good, Fair, or Failing.”

Said Media Director Damon Romine, who edited the report: “We know that seeing multi-dimensional, diverse people represented on television changes public perception. Millions of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans fight every day for equality and for the right to live their lives without fear of discrimination and violence. True equality will be in our grasp when network television presents our stories in a fair, accurate and inclusive way.”

No network received an “excellent” rating. Here’s how they stacked up:

ABC – 171 LGBT inclusive hours out of 1,147 total hours (15% of programming). RANK = Good

The CW – 56 LGBT inclusive hours out of 472 total hours (12% of programming). RANK = Fair
CBS – 100.5 LGBT inclusive hours out of 1,147 total hours (9% of programming). RANK = Fair
NBC – 83 LGBT inclusive hours out of 1,147 total hours (7% of programming). RANK = Fair

FOX – 50 LGBT inclusive hours out of 780 total hours (6% of programming). RANK = Poor

A copy of the report, which has been sent to programming executives at each of the networks, is available here.


  1. C.Williams says

    This would be an issue if we only watched TV for only our specific
    sexuality. Since we do not this is completely absurd.

    I do love how a 1% difference allows them to rate FOX as the
    only “Poor” network. 6% is probably a lot closer to what our
    percentage of the population, and still not a number that would
    allow any TV show to remain on the air if that was its only viewership

  2. Leland says

    Unable to open the “report,” but given that GLAAD’s idea of Must Watch TV is Ross the Intern and pronounced the loathsome “Chuck & Larry” a revolutionary advance for gay equality, it’s not surprising that they only see the basically positive gay characters on ABC’s “Brothers & Sisters” while having their heads up their Coors-fucked asses about the anti-pride parade of negative gay characters created by fag Repug Marc Cherry in the previous hour on “Desperate Housewives.” From a sociopathic teenage killer to a mincing meat puppet beauty pageant coach to a prodigious child molester. “Quality, quantity, diversity”? No, Damon and Neil, partners in slime, one gay lawyer and a couple of boyfriends do NOT trump the smirking predatory pedophile next door who thanked Lynette for enabling him to have more time to pull little boys’ pants down and photograph them, not to mention its other Dissolute Homos.

    As for the solipsists who mistakenly think their opinions about DH overall or TV generally are relevant, the last time I looked DH was still in the top ten, so millions of Americans are still being spoon fed Cherry’s Jubilee of homos to hate or laugh at. Instead of praising ABC for keeping him on the menu, GLAAD should be calling for a boycott. But since they lost their teeth and balls long ago, they throw violets instead.

    Dump GLAAD!

  3. Gitai says

    I think they rated ABC too low. The absolutely normal portrayal of the gay characters on Brothers and Sisters is revolutionary in itself, since the gay characters act like people I know. I really liked the Scotty character too, since he was flamey without being a caricature.

    I also like that the gay characters on ABC actually have sex with other men. I hate how on so many other networks, the gays are effeminate and asexual. Andrew may be a little fucker, but he gets laid. It’s a world of difference between Thirtysomething and the response they received when they showed two men in bed together.

    The only beef I have might be with Mark on Ugly Betty, since he is a caricature. It fits with the overall aesthetic of the show, which is high camp, but I’d like it if he got a boyfriend. Justin more than makes up for it.

  4. anon ( says

    Do they also track cable and premium channels? I would think Bravo or Showtime would have a higher rating than ABC. Are they including soaps?

    A dark satire like DH is full of psychos. Is anyone portrayed in a good light?

  5. Leland says

    Gabriel: the character never identified himself as gay, but the way his exposure was dramatized—Lynette discovering dozens of pictures of shirtless teen and pre-teen boys in his house what do you think DH’s roughly 18 million US viewers a week [not counting the tens of millions more around the world] deduced? What did/would you deduce? Further illustrating Cherry’s venality is that the episode in which Lynette first suspected her neighbor Art was called “Children and Art.” In a later episode, he shows up at a Wisteria Lane block party dressed as Santa Claus. I’m surprised that episode wasn’t called, “Candy cane, Little Boy?” And, if anyone missed his penultimate episode, which alone justifies Cherry, not receiving GLAAD awards, but being condemned by the entire gay community, here’s a link to a clip of Art’s final scene in which he tells DH Lynette what’s going to happen after her accusations led his invalid sister to die of a heart attack:

    Scanning the third-rate GLAAD document only reinforced my expectations. They don’t mention the pedophile at all, nor the gay/bi teen recurring character’s mamacita-slaughter, seduction of his mother’s bi boyfriend just to hurt her, etc. Just as, in their overview of ABC’s history, they don’t mention the near decade of “Dynasty” in which ABC repeatedly reinforced the myth that being gay is a choice. Of course, they are thrilled that Mario Cantone will be back next season, BIG surprise, as the hairdresser on ABC’s Fags in Curlers, er Men in Trees.

    They also praise CBS for the “60 Minutes” episode about possible etiologies of being gay—the same episode that was lacerated by NGLTF for featuring a right wing scientist whose research has been debunked.

    As for Anon’s childish analysis, yes, DH is full of wackos, some of them violent, homocidal. But none of them demonize an entire class of people by reinforcing the ultimate evil stereotype, and parents’ greatest fear—the child molester.

  6. gabriel says

    I’m not defending the show or GLAAD (I typically agree with everything you have written about GLAAD)… just curious about your connection between calling him a gay character.

    I deduced that he was a child molester, not that he was gay or straight. And I did so since it has been the case that pedophiles/child molesters don’t choose a boy/girl to act on due to sexual orientation. Meaning.. if he molests boys, doesn’t mean he is gay.

    If we can’t distinguish between the two, I imagine the rest of America is far behind. But I also understand there are many, many people out there who would assume he was gay based on him having those pictures.. and for that I understand where you are coming from.

    I just hate to see him called a gay character, since he isn’t.

  7. Leland says

    I’m aware of the school of thought that says pedophiles are more driven by the child’s age than gender, but that distinction IS lost on probably 99.999999% of people.

    Given carte blanche on the hit show he created, Cherry COULD have chosen to weave such a distinction into the script. He did not. He COULD have shown the character displaying pictures of half-naked young boys AND girls or, better still, just young girls. He did not. For reasons which even his shrink might not understand, Cherry has chosen to use his unique power in Follywood to fill the vacuum of television with more gay stereotypes. I have been EXTREMELY critical of “Grey’s Anatomy” creator Shondra Rhimes re the Isaiah debacle, but applaud the fact that, as a person of color, she is using HER power to present still racist America with multiple positive Black characters including the hospital director, the chief of residents, and [until the actor cooked his own goose, as it were] a brilliant surgeon. Cherry’s primarily gives us slices of stereotypes and, in his own term re Andrew, evil; the whole pie poisoned by a man who, label him whatever you want, molests little boys. Call him what you want.

  8. Bill says

    My ex boyfriend was into “Desperate Housewives,” and I watched it a few times. I found it rather frequently offensive, like I halfway wanted to puke after it was over. I don’t find murder or child abuse “campy”….ugh….

  9. anon ( says

    I’ve never actually watched the show but having seen the clip mentioned I say you’d have to be a total moron to take DH seriously–the guy should have been wearing a cape and twirling his mustache. If Kevin on Brothers and Sisters were a child molester then that would be bad news, as that show has the pretense of reality. I would not be surprised though if most of the fans of DH were morons, who probably have more problems than can be solved in a day anyway.

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