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Manhunt Chairman Jonathan Crutchley Steps Down from Board


As a response earlier this week to revelations that Manhunt Chairman and founder Jonathan Crutchley (above, right) had maxed out his individual personal contributions to vocal gay rights opponent Senator John McCain ($2300) which we reported on Wednesday, Crutchley has apparently been pressured by the board of the company to step down as Chairman.

I received this statement made by founder Larry Basile (above, left) in my inbox late yesterday from an anonymous source at Manhunt and called Manhunt which confirmed its legitimacy. Please read the statement below:


"There has been a depiction this week of MANHUNT being Republican. All my life, I have never voted to the right, and have always been generous to 20th Century Democrats, Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders, HRC, and the NGLTF.

"I was arrested at the Supreme Court and FDA in Act-Up actions, and was the founder of the Grass Roots Gay Rights Fund, which over the years has raised more than $800K. I was the Treasurer of Out Week magazine, which was a powerful force in its time. I began giving Obama donations in March 2007, and I have sent several checks that have yet to be reported. The hat and t-shirt I wear say 'Obama for President', as does the sign in front of my house. I refuse to live in a country that is so marred by war and hate. To me, Barak (sic) is by far the best candidate, probably better than we deserve.

"It should be known that Jonathan Crutchley's donation to McCain left the entire Board in disbelief. I am disappointed that we have lost some customers, and I understand the anger. It is too bad for the web site if we lose customers, but PLEASE never refer to me as a Republican. I consider it an offense.

"Earlier today, at the request of the Board, Jonathan has stepped down as Chairman. Sincerely, Larry Basile."


One last note: We never referred to Basile as a Republican. Also, though Crutchley has stepped down from the board, as far as we know he's still collecting money from thousands of gays and donating it to a presidential candidate who would deny them status as equal citizens.

Manhunt Responds to Account Cancelation Over McCain Donation [tr]
McCain Takes $2300 Contribution from Owner of Gay Sex Site Manhunt [tr]
(top photo: OUT - "Has Manhunt Destroyed Culture?")

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  1. :-\ Disappointing. Anyone care to address the point? Advocating for the devil isn't as easy as it looks!

    Posted by: Grey | Aug 15, 2008 2:22:27 PM

  2. He is the majority owner - he must still be on the board - even if he gets kicked off the board do you think someone as vocal as him would ever be ignored by the staff or the board when he owns most of the company? Change in titles....just a show to appease the liberals and keep members from leaving....

    Adam4Adam made a $2300 contribution to Obama in response and posted an ad backing him.

    The ad leads to

    Posted by: zipper | Aug 15, 2008 2:26:08 PM

  3. I am scared by the lack of numbers who are outraged by Manhunt's exploitation of us, as a community. Stopping putting photos on manhunt, altering profiles, stopping being a paying member, all won't have enough impact. People need to remove profiles completely. If as a community we can't put a company like Manhunt out of business, what hope is there for us? The next time a company wants to put out a homophobic ad, will they fear us stopping buying their products because of that? Why would they, they will still have straights support them. What voice do we have, if we can't take serious action against a site created just for us. If we let a gay owned, gay run company exploit us in this way, I fear what we will lose as a result.

    Posted by: Shaun | Aug 15, 2008 3:08:08 PM

  4. Mr. Crutchley apparently enjoys second class citizenship. Continuing your membership with Manhunt does not stop the cash flow to him whether he is chairman or not. For those who have argued it is only a $2300 donation let me remind you, Mr. Crutchley may be donating an unlimited amount of “gay” dollars to 527 organizations that have one purpose to discredit Obama. He can do this without any legal obligation of disclosure and without limit to what he can spend. To those who say what difference does it make Democrat or Republican? Mr. McCain has said Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas would be a key advisory in helping decide who he should nominate for the Supreme Court. Sam Brownback is one of the most homophobic Senators in the U.S. Senate and has lead the charge to stop “activist” judges from granting gay people any type of minority protection. I wonder how Sam’s court would rule on standards of decency on a gay hook up site. Migrate elsewhere there are plenty of other gay hook up sites.

    Posted by: rm | Aug 15, 2008 3:18:03 PM

  5. You people are f###ing ridiculous. NO ONE joins Manhunt in the hopes that their membership fees will be directed towards the Obama or any other campaign. They are thinking of cock, not politics.

    If you really think that it's possible to get EVERYONE to cancel their Manhunt accounts due to this major blunder, good luck because you're living in a dream world.

    That's ignoring the question of whether it is morally right to try and dismantle an entire company and un-employ many many workers (many if not most of whom are likely liberal politically) because you want to hurt one guy at the top. And from some of the comments here, I wonder if a lot of this "boycott" crap is coming from folks who work at websites that compete with Manhunt.

    I'm as liberal as they come, but this "stop Manhunt" crap is completely misdirected and childish.

    Posted by: gay as life | Aug 15, 2008 3:38:48 PM

  6. As a shameless slut who uses various sites to connect, I get to chime in.

    I don't use Manhunt because I find it so obvious, un-sexy, and commercial. I'd rather troll craigslist honestly; the posts are far more poetic and comical, and it's hotter to up be in the whole mix of sexual desire- gay, straight, bi, trans, multiples, &c...

    This political controversy may well reduce membership numbers- great. But I think it's more important for us to abandon manhunt on the grounds of taste and esthetics. It brings an overproduced and highly commercial gloss to what is ultimately a social networking site. Other sites like myspace (yea, I know Murdoch-owned, bad, bad) embrace individual expression instead of porn standards.

    Posted by: dc10001 | Aug 15, 2008 3:59:02 PM

  7. BLUNDER? What blunder? The man has spoken his mind -

    Unless you have not noticed money is power in this country - he is taking OUR money and using it to power HIS agenda - if that is not worthy of action I do not know what is.

    Posted by: Zipper | Aug 15, 2008 3:59:58 PM

  8. First, let me say that I think Mr. Crutchley's self-hate is entirely warranted. He should hate himself; not because he's a homosexual, but because he's a vile little worm...

    Yes, he can certainly do whatever he likes with his money and so can I... And I don't like handing over my money to some dipshit who despises "liberal values" yet makes a killing off an enterprise that wouldn't exist if a bunch of "liberals" hadn't sacrificed their own time, energy, careers and sometimes lives, in an effort to ensure that Freedom of Sexual Expression and Action is protected with the same rigor as our cherished American Freedoms to Shop, Kill, and Invade Other Countries That Have Something We Want.

    I've changed my Manhunt Profile into a demand that Crutchley be forced to divest of any and all holdings in the Manhunt immediately and have included the reason I'm demanding that. I'll see if the changes go through. Should be interesting.

    All you guys out there who think Wetbrain McCain is nifty can continue to exercise your freedom of choice and support Manhunt, but I've worked too damn hard for my dough to see it go into the pocket of an opportunistic, ethics-challenged 'phobe who sees me as less than human and will continue to run this country into the goddam ditch.

    Posted by: mcQ | Aug 15, 2008 4:10:18 PM

  9. I used to criticize Larry Kramer and his sometimes shrill shrieking. I thought to myself, "No one is ever going to listen to you. You're being overloud and overreactionary."

    Now I understand why Mr. Kramer adopted the voice of the most piercing harpie. He knew that the challenge wasn't to get his community to listen. His challenge was to get them to wake up in the first place.

    The recent revelations concerning Jonathan Crutchley were something that I thought would be igniting the gay media to the explosion point. Surely, my line of reasoning went, treason (and yes, I will call it treason) such as this will be the match that finally gets this fuse burning. Sadly, this news doesn't even rise to the heat of an Easy-Bake oven these days. On the whole, however, I guess I should put my shock in check. It took thousands and then millions globally to die before anyone decided to get off of their ass and start screaming bloodly murder (and that is what is was, ladies and gentlemen) before any change occured.

    Back to that label of treason for a moment. What else could I possibly call it? Unless a gay or lesbian couple in ANY of the US states is lucky enough to work for an organization or company that is "benevolent" enough to offer same-sex partner health benefits, I'm going to take a wild guess here and say that most couples have one member that is underinsured, if they're insured at all. Mr. Crutchley is giving money to a man that wants to see that trend continue, if not worsen. Mr. Crutchley is a member of a community that is desperate for the same rights in medical benefits that any federally united heterosexual couple just assumes will be offered. Mr. Crutchley has the money to make a good challenging run at this issue. He made it off of YOUR PAID PROFILE on his website. What did he do with the money instead? He gave it as a promotional gift to the one man in the running for role of leader of the free world to make sure that it'll never happen. As the ultimate irony, he will get a federal tax break for that donation.

    Are you getting this yet? Is it making you mad?

    With the specific label of treason comes the umbrella of hyprocrisy in general, and for me it is worth mentioning here the double-agents. And oh my, in the last few years has this list grown long. It started with Mary Cheney, and it has spread like wildfire from there. The list of names became less of a roll call and more of a shame parade. Just to name a few: Ed Schrock, David Drier, James McCrery, Mark Foley, Larry Craig. They fought to make sure that you would end up in a jail cell for who you loved while sucking dick in their bedroom closets when the wife was out of town. And Mr. Jonothan Crutchley is giving money to the party of these individuals, so that those remaining can do it to you some more.

    Are you getting this yet? Is it making you mad?

    Today, when I was making sure that all of the gay press outlets in this town were apprised of this development, I had someone point out to me that one of those outlets, the Chicago Free Press, is published by a man that has contributed to George W. Bush not once but twice. This man, who publishes a paper whose mission statement claims that it's goal is to be "a common voice for a diverse community. CFP exists to serve the city´s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community; to fight for its social and political progress; and to challenge prejudice and injustice against the community. CFP is committed to the cardinal principles of American journalism-objectivity, fairness, accuracy and independence."


    Is it fair that the head of this publication is giving away the advertising dollars earned from its publication to the very people that are creating and perpetuating the "prejudices and injustices against the community"? Is it even morally right?

    And yet, those of you in this city will continue to spend your money at the businesses that advertise in this paper. You will continue to frequent the bars that allow this paper's photographers to come in and take snaps in the hope that the publication of said pictures will garner a few more dollars for their enterprise. The paper's writers will continue to clack away at their keyboards and help keep this man at a financial level to help them maybe put food on thier table in the short run, but ultimately is investing in a long-term future for them that brings nothing but more of the second-rate status that they apparently seem to enjoy.


    To my community as a whole: PLEASE WAKE UP. You're at a place of having not only your voice stifled, but losing anywhere to turn when almosty no one else will listen to you. STOP LETTING YOUR OWN CONTINUE TO KEEP YOU IN THE DEFECTIVE, NOT-WORTHY STATE.



    Posted by: Chester Munro | Aug 15, 2008 4:23:12 PM

  10. Chester Munro wrote: "What did he do with the money instead? He gave it as a promotional gift to the one man in the running for role of leader of the free world to make sure that it'll never happen. As the ultimate irony, he will get a federal tax break for that donation."

    "Leader of the Free World"...? Who the hell are YOU trying to kid, with your constitution shot fulla holes, your phones being wiretapped, your writ of habeus corpus a joke, your armed forces blithely ignoring the Geneva Conventions and involved in unprovoked invasions of sovereign foreign nations? Leader of the Free World? It is to laugh! I have for some time now been referring to your appointed (p)resident as "Little Boots", because it seems quite appropriate to me -- y'know what "Little Boots" is in Latin? Caligula.

    Leader of the Free World my ass -- your "leader" and your nation are a disgrace to the Free World.

    "No man can hold an entire nation hostage unless we all all his accomplices." -- Edward R. Murrow

    Posted by: Nathanial | Aug 15, 2008 4:48:26 PM

  11. The issue is much greater than just the donation - his arrogance and hypocrisy is beyond bounds. Crutchley not only deserved to lose his job, but remember he is also one of the primary shareholders of the company. Please remember the Coors Boycott of the 80's. The Community stood up to the far-right owners of the company by boycotting their products.

    Posted by: BostonCyberGuy | Aug 15, 2008 5:13:08 PM

  12. People who fall for this PR stunt are idiots. Crutchley has simply changed his nominal corporate designation from 'CEO' to 'Chief Corporate Administrator'. Give me a break. He is raking in the exact amount of gay dollars as he made before. Nothing has been done but a cynical shell game.

    Posted by: Ray | Aug 15, 2008 5:21:19 PM

  13. Um...

    Wow. First of all, I didn't vote for the current president, do not like the current president or anything he has done.

    And while I have much respect for Edward R. Murrow, I'm a bit foggy as to what you'd like me as an individual to do about my disgraceful leader. I cannot as just a private citizen start impeachment hearings, and we do not have a no confidence vote provision. I refuse to go to prison in any attempt to eliminate the man, so any suggestion would be welcome.


    Nothing like pulling out one phrase and missing the point entirely.

    Posted by: Chester | Aug 15, 2008 5:25:31 PM

  14. The real way to deal with this is to let the whole world know where John McCain is getting some of his money from. Surely there has to be a media outlet that will carry this story nationally.

    Posted by: anon | Aug 15, 2008 5:33:01 PM

  15. Chester -- Oh, I read and understood the rest of your post. I just get fed up with the arrogance -- especially over the last eight years -- when I hear Americans using the phrase "leader of the free world". What hubris! If there ever WAS any truth to the claim to that position, it has been abdicated.

    As to what you can do? How about supporting Independent candidate Ms. Sheehan in her efforts to knock off that piece of useless deadwood, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who famously announced that "impeachment is off the table". Maybe if Pelosi was knocked onto her big fat ass, the rest of those useless friggin' Democrats might actually wake up and DO something.

    Posted by: Nathanial | Aug 15, 2008 5:41:39 PM

  16. Everyone has the right to vote with their poket books.

    This includes all the people who have cancelled their accounts with Manhunt.

    The gay $ cuts both ways.

    Posted by: Ivan | Aug 15, 2008 6:12:52 PM

  17. I remember when we used to call the conservatives reactionary! Honestly I can't recall that last time I heard so many well-meaning people using such intelligent language to say such stupid things.

    Sure, sink the ship to kill the (co-) captain! I'm sure the gay world will be much better off without all the contributions Mr. Basile and the rest of the Manhunt staff have made on our behalf. Certainly one a-hole is worth bringing down the entire enterprise. Sounds like the people who say down-with-Amercia because we've got a nimrod running things!

    Posted by: Seriously | Aug 15, 2008 9:01:13 PM

  18. This is just for cosmetic purposes so that Manhunt doesn't fail as a company. It means absolutely nothing that he has stepped down.

    Crutchley still OWNS 50% of the company!

    Manyhunt is a site for gay men to meet and is owned and run by people who are openly support a political system that spreads hatred, vilification and are totally against the interests of gays.

    This is our chance to stand together as one and tell a gay business that makes money solely because of gay men that we wont tolerate this.

    We must keep boycotting them. I have let everyone I know about this whether they have mannunt account or not. Everyone is equally shocked and revolted.

    Posted by: Joel | Aug 15, 2008 9:29:07 PM

  19. Really, Joel? It means absolutely nothing that this conservative [fill in the blank] was forced to step down as chairman of the company he founded by the liberals who run it now? You know, there's a lot of real estate between "meaning nothing" and "meaning everything" that a lot of people are ignoring. Why is it we focus so heavily on Crutchley's actions and categorically dismiss Basile's? OK, I get why. Like you and "everyone you know" I was shocked and revolted as well. Which is why I made it a point to keep a clear head and not get carried away.

    Manhunt is "owned and run by people who openly support a political system that spreads hatred, vilification and are totally against the interests of gays." For real? Seems to me that Crutchley is the exception that we've called the rule.

    The man made his contribution on his own behalf, NOT as the co-owner of Manhunt. The company itself is anything but Republican. I even remember getting emails from them in opposition to Republican initiatives.

    When I contacted Manhunt Support about this issue, I got the statement from Basile that was posted here on this forum. I wonder what response gay Republicans get when they contact support and bitch about Larry's anti-Republican rant. Do you think they send a prepared statement from Crutchley to appease them? My guess is no. Which means that, if anything, the company has taken a decidedly Democrat position. Someone may want to try this and see what happens...

    Posted by: ADC | Aug 15, 2008 10:05:45 PM

  20. I can't stand McCain and don't understand why a self-respecting gay man would support him. BUT - Should we honestly judge a man entirely based on one action?

    No one has made any mention of the hundreds of thousands of dollars Manhunt donates to AIDS charities, gay domestic violence organizations, and health outreach. (Full disclosure: I work in the field and my organization benefits from their largess).

    No one has mentioned the studies they fund and participate in or the millions of dollars in ad inventory that they donate to drug and disease prevention non-profits. I've tried to get the same commitment - or even any commitment - from other supposed gay community organizations, such as and Adam4Adam, and can't even get a call back.

    So before we're so quick to cut them off at their knees, we should think about all the good they do and balance that against this one wrong; no matter how egregious.

    Lastly, Manhunt is made up of at least two partners. Only one has made his support of McCain known. And even though he probably still owns his shares, having to publicly give up his title definitely means something. I don't know about you, but I wouldn't so readily step down from a position of prominence, whether I owned part of the company or not.

    Posted by: Garrett | Aug 15, 2008 10:34:10 PM

  21. So he gets a little vacation for awhile not having to serve on the board but still getting his salary and all that that entails.

    Then he'll get bored and go out and consult for a couple of companies to pull in even more cash. And then he'll go on to work for a Carly Fiorna or a Meg Whitman.

    Or maybe he'll wake the fuck up and get a conscience.

    Posted by: Rey | Aug 16, 2008 12:05:55 AM

  22. When did gay guys become such asshole republicanesque jerks? I dont give a fuck who this guy donates to but I say he should give his money to whoever he fucking wants to.

    You bitches sound like those idiots who said if you were against the war you didnt support the troops. Oh poor me somebody doesnt think like me! Its Obama 2.o around here for the last few months.

    So, after all the years of different groups fighting for our American freedoms we homos are deciding no one gets to have a different opinion? Fuck you! I hate the klan but they have the right to say and think what they want. As do liberals and everyone else in this country.

    Do you realize that the justice dept has been looking at employment candidates extra curricular activities to weed out liberal organizations like HRC or AFAN which indicates "bad thought"? You are doing the same thing. I referred to Obama because if you say anything against him you're a racist (what do you mean you dont support the troops you commie!).

    To deny anyone the right to donate THEIR money (which YOU gave him) to anything they want to is UN-AMERICAN! You who would want this man to hold his head down in shame are no better than limbaughs ditto heads. Actually, you're worse because you should know better. You're oh so educated and cultured yet ,somehow, you dont grasp the fundamentals of being an American.

    I am sickened by the Fascist crap I've read here on this subject. Why don't we get Lance Bass and his band of guys no one knew were gay and burn something. Anything. I know, lets burn a pentecostal church or a Carls jr! They dont like us! They dont think like us!Theyre Jews! Theyre Gypsys! Theyre Gay, oh uh wait uh........

    Posted by: thevegasstyleguy | Aug 16, 2008 12:33:38 AM

  23. Chester --

    Further to my comment above: "As to what you can do? How about supporting Independent candidate Ms. Sheehan in her efforts to knock off that piece of useless deadwood, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who famously announced that "impeachment is off the table". Maybe if Pelosi was knocked onto her big fat ass, the rest of those useless friggin' Democrats might actually wake up and DO something."

    Read this from "Crooks & Liars": Nancy Pelosi is quickly learning that being a reliable and powerful liberal voice in the House of Representatives doesn’t necessarily translate into blind support. During an event in Los Angeles to promote her new book, Know Your Power: A Message to America’s Daughters, a group of protesters started screaming in anger over her unwillingness to open impeachment inquiries against Bush.

    The Public Record broke the story:

    * * *

    So, what can YOU do, Chester? Well, even if you can't go physically to SF to lend a hand, you can contribute:

    And THAT would be a good counterpoint to just pulling your membership to Manhunt -- send all the money you would have spent there to Cindy Sheehan, instead. How's THAT for a suggestion?

    Posted by: Nathanial | Aug 16, 2008 3:38:44 AM

  24. But he didn't get fired - he OWNS the company.

    He has taken himself off the Board of Directors (of which there are apparently three, Crutchley, Basile and some other guy who is soooo happy no one knows his name in Provincetown this week).

    He will continue to reap his OWNERS portion of the $2.4 million dollars a MONTH that MH brings in. And then he can donate it to a 527 campaign that doesn't have to report his self loathing politics to the Federal Election Commission.

    This is a PR stunt and nothing more.

    We must suggest that Manhunt put your money where you mouth is (except on McCain's cock).

    Manhunt, make a committment to donating just 2% of your annual $30 MILLION to your own foundation, then spread the wealth. $600,000 a year buys a whole lotta good you know.

    You're gonna have to spend it to make it Manhunt, you have damaged your name, you've made us question our trust that gay business will support gay causes and you look like a bunch of amateurs (I won't even mention the positive "shill" comments above, so obviously planted).

    It's time to make a REAL effort to negate the bad press, bad feelings and icky factor that you're nothing but a bunch of pornographers taking advantage of your own community while you sit back and laugh at us and endorse checks all day.

    Posted by: new york style | Aug 16, 2008 8:55:55 AM

  25. Oh dear.

    I don't think anyone is saying Crutchley CAN'T donate to whoever he wants but I believe people are saying, "if you take my gay $ and give it to an anti-gay candidate I will no longer be giving your sad ass my gay $ - got it?!"

    Now I hear McCain gave the money back. I guess Crutchley now knows what it feels like to be betrayed.

    Oh, and all those complaining about sex in gay culture. Take a look at 'straight culture' believe it or not they are sex obsessed too! SHOCK! I hear sex sells! ;)

    Posted by: Timothy | Aug 16, 2008 9:13:15 AM

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