California | Gay Marriage | News

Thinking Different: Gay Hollywood Professionals Launch Grassroots Viral Campaign to Fight Prop. 8


As you hopefully know, anti-gay marriage foes are pumping millions of dollars into the ballot measure (Prop. 8) that would define marriage as between a man and a woman and take rights away from millions of people.

Take a look at this viral spot for "No on Proposition 8" produced by HOMOtracker, a small group of gay and lesbian Hollywood industry professionals, in an effort to mobilize and defeat Proposition 8 on November 4th. It's one of a series of message ads that are based on the well-known, successful, and oft-imitated "Mac vs. PC" script. In this case, the script works wonderfully. I'm happy to debut one of the spots here on Towleroad.

We've put this in a player which also allows you to donate and post the video on Facebook and a number of other social networking services in hopes to get the message out and raise money to fight Proposition 8. I cannot stress enough the implications this ballot measure will have on the nation and our rights.

There's another version on Pink is the New Blog. I've heard a few others will be popping up on Defamer and Huffington Post. Two of the other spots also feature Margaret Cho and Mollly Ringwald.

Said Andrew Oldershaw, a producer who is part of HOMOtracker, and helped initiate the project:

"A few short months ago I was at a table with my friends Dayna Frank, Angel Lopez, Courtney Sexton & Todd Shortz talking about the November ballot initiative. At that time, the opposition had recently succeeded in getting the measure on the ballot. We just felt like we needed to contribute somehow, to bring a megaphone to the voices of LGBT young people in Los Angeles. We felt that if we addressed the issue with the right combination of levity, respect and impact, we’d be able to accomplish two things: galvanize the community of LGBT and LGBT-allied voters and change a few minds of those currently undecided. The result of that little powwow are four PSA’s parodying the MAC vs PC commercials, thanks to the collaborative talents of writers Ray Lancon, Grant Sloss, producer Chris Pannizon and directors Dan Kay & Jonah Markowitz, actors Chris Bruss, Margaret Cho, Mathilda Gianopoulos, Panio Gianopoulos, Selene Luna, Molly Ringwald, Bob Stephenson, Katie Walder and the entire crew."

Added Oldershaw: "Our goal in creating these shorts was to shine a fresh light on this issue, as a call-to-arms for our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters and to hopefully change a few minds on the other side of the battlefield and those caught in the middle."

Please share the above video liberally, and donate to "No on Prop 8".

One more version, AFTER THE JUMP...

HOMOtracker [official site]

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  1.'s great that they are doing something, but do we need cutesy PSAs? There are several Mac v PC parody commercials out there right now. This will not stand out. We need Chris Rock and other straight, ethnic minorities to appeal to their communities to not vote for hate. Bring this to their would they feel if their civil rights were taken away?

    We need to appeal to people's hearts.

    Posted by: Mike | Oct 14, 2008 8:17:27 AM

  2. GREAT commercial! I hope it grabs positive attention! Now--to any celebs who have deep pockets, get your faces on TV and donate $.

    Posted by: troschne | Oct 14, 2008 8:32:58 AM

  3. Thanks, Andy, for giving "No on 8" so much attention. This is really important to our community.

    I agree with Mike than none of these "No on 8" ads is particularly effective. They do need to appeal to emotion. Show real gay people -- that we are your friends, relatives, neighbors, doctors, lawyers, teachers, professors, bus drivers, etc.. -- and how important marriage is to us -- that without it, we cannot provide basic protections to the one we love -- that it is an issue of fairness and we are just regular people that want to live our lives. "Equality California" and "Love Makes a Family" had some good ads in the past like this -- but I think the recent ones specifically on Prop 8 have not been effective.

    Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 14, 2008 8:35:58 AM

  4. This is an excellent ad in the way it conveys the basic situation.

    I wish there was a similar nation-wide commercial aired on network television that would convey the basic "you have no right to oppress others with your chosen religion".

    Posted by: Pbar | Oct 14, 2008 9:45:02 AM

  5. This is totally spot on. No we don’t need to show gay people getting married. “Gay marriage” still polls negatively in California (thanks to the Un-Christians/Mormons) however “marriage equity” polls very well. “Gay marriage” is seen as some kind of special right to most of the uneducated electorate.

    Posted by: ggreen | Oct 14, 2008 9:54:04 AM

  6. Very cute, but Blue Jersey "ripped off" the Mac/PC ads over a year ago.

    Not surprising though, since a good chunk of CA has roots in jersey, LOL.

    Posted by: Qjersey | Oct 14, 2008 10:09:30 AM

  7. Great ad!

    Posted by: John | Oct 14, 2008 10:48:34 AM

  8. That was brilliant!

    Posted by: ugotmeinsd_619 | Oct 14, 2008 11:10:38 AM

  9. I'm tired of seeing ads that look like they are film school projects. Like it or not, this is politics folks. We need to see hard hitting ads that target the Yes on 8 campaign. The Mormon church is financing the Yes on 8 campaign with millions and millions of dollars. BYU students are manning phone banks. We need to see some ads targeting the Mormon church and the other religious groups (including Focus on the Family) that are trying to rewrite our Constitution. I'd love to see an ad that features the zombie polygamist wives and asks why the mormons are trying to define what marriage is in California.

    Posted by: Anonymous | Oct 14, 2008 11:19:16 AM

  10. When humans are born into a given situation, no matter how vile or degrading, we often accept things as they are.

    We don't know any better.

    Even when we are aware of a more FAIR and JUST situation, we stay with what we know.
    It's comfortable. It's familiar. It is what is. (abused men, women, and children know this feeling all too well)

    Children born into slavery did not know any better; it was what was. Before the right to vote in 1920 and the social changes in the 1960-70's, women didn't know any better; it was what was.

    But in the 21st Century, we can no longer pretend that we don't know any better when it comes to the abhorrent injustice of denying Civil Marriage Rights to
    Tax-Paying Families and their Children.

    We can't. We know better.

    So why are we PAYING and BEGGING for the possibility of equality? Don't we realize we already DESERVE it?

    Posted by: John Bisceglia | Oct 14, 2008 11:55:36 AM

  11. This video will never go as viral as it should with such horrible sharing tools. At the very least give people the option to get the direct url for the video to post to their social sites or what have you. The Facebook one posts it in some stupid "MY STUFF" box. Facebook has perfectly good posting tools that don't require so much work for the user.

    Posted by: Madam Bomb | Oct 14, 2008 12:31:48 PM

  12. Naturally, the bad guy has a weight problem. Subtle.

    Posted by: Alex | Oct 14, 2008 1:50:22 PM

  13. This is such an important ballot measure that must be defeated! I live in South Orange County and the Yes on Prop 8 signs are cropping up all over the place. I can't wait to get my No signs so I can put those up as well.

    This would just be such a huge blow for civil rights and would resonate throughout the Country. Thanks for empahsizing how important it is to defeat this bill. And I'm straight, but I know many friends who want to marry and I want to be there at their weddings, legal and equal.

    My husband is running for State Senate as a Democrat in Orange County and we oppose this bill!

    Posted by: Heather Pritchard | Oct 14, 2008 2:36:25 PM

  14. Where are all the big name gay/lesbian celebrities?

    Why are they NOT in these ads?

    Why haven't they given money?

    someone. Hello (crickets)

    Posted by: FunMe | Oct 14, 2008 5:31:24 PM

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