LGBTI global news 24-7

Content about GSN

September 15, 2014

Drag queens are demanding Facebook drops its policy of making them use their ‘legal names’ for their profiles – now the social network has responded

Facebook has responded to angry drag queens after insisting they use their ‘real’ or ‘legal’ names for their profiles.

The firm’s response, sent to Gay Star News, comes as the performers threaten to picket Facebook’s Seattle offices over the issue.

September 9, 2014

Author Rupert Smith talks about the joy of becoming a dad later in life, and why he has no time for gay people who think he and his partner have been assimilated by mainstream society

British author Rupert Smith, 54, and his partner, Marcus Soanes, 49, live in London.

They’ve been together since 1992 and in a civil partnership since 2009 (‘we didn’t want to rush into anything!’). They adopted their son, a three-year-old boy, in the spring of 2013.

Smith talked to GSN about the process of becoming a dad, and why he thinks LGBTI people who bad-mouth other gay people for choosing parenthood need to ‘grow up’.

September 9, 2014

When gays, lesbians and coal miners united 30 years ago, they changed Britain forever: GSN spoke with two of the ringleaders

The UK in 1984 was a divided country. But two very different groups of people were about to come together in one of the most unlikely alliances in political history. And in doing so, they would change hearts and minds around the nation and show the global LGBTI movement anything is possible.

This is the true story of Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners – a story which has just been turned into the critically acclaimed film, Pride, out in theaters in Britain on 12 September.

September 8, 2014

Authorities in homophobic countries have been using the app to hunt gay men

Grindr has disabled its show distance setting in countries that have a history of anti-gay violence, after reports that authorities were using the app to hunt gay men.

The setting no longer works in Russia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Liberia, Sudan and Zimbabwe among others, and more will be added to the list.

Grindr told GSN, ‘In light of recent security allegations surrounding a user’s specific location, Grindr is taking measures and will be releasing updates to keep users secure in territories with anti-gay legislation.'

September 6, 2014

'But we’re just like any couple, really'

American football season has officially started and DirecTV is doing its part to make sure (LGBTI) fans watch every game.

In a new commercial hawking the NFL Sunday Ticket (a program that allows a viewer to see all National Football League games), a male couple explains why they need the package.

'Chris and I have a friendly rivalry: Giants-Cowboys. You know the deal,' a voiceover calmly explains.

September 4, 2014

It’s not uncommon for gay men and straight female friends to discuss the idea of having children together: it’s more unusual when those friends live an ocean apart

When New Yorker Ellen Capon decided that time was running out on her dreams of becoming a birth mother, it was to her gay friend, London-based PR consultant Stephen Ward, that she turned for assistance.

September 3, 2014

LGBTIs are planning to flee the country if Islamic State fighters get in. Those who can’t get out will be targeted for execution, they warn

LGBTI people in Lebanon fear they will be massacred if ISIS troops penetrate the country.

While the Islamic State fighters (also called ISIS) are currently focused on Syria and Iraq, they have already had skirmishes with Lebanese troops on the border.

And LGBTI people in Beirut, the Lebanese capital, are living in fear they will be targeted if ISIS does make a concerted attack on Lebanon.

Their eyes are now on the Bekaa Valley, a Christian-dominated area in the east of Lebanon where ISIS could break through.

August 21, 2014

A same-sex family in Massachusetts are in the running for a $50,000 scholarship prize and dream vacation

Here at GSN, we love to hear stories about happy same-sex families.

International dating site match.com is currently running a scholarship competition, with a $50,000 scholarship prize on offer to any kid who has a parent that either met or remarried through the site.

Students aged between 13-20 were invited to submit a 1-2 minute video that captured their parents’ love story in a creative way. From the many entries submitted, Match.com selected five finalists – and one is from the daughter of a same-sex couple.

August 15, 2014

Every man of a certain age can understand the struggles of hair loss. When one guy started losing it in his 20s, he embarked on a treatment that changed his life

A young guy who bought 150 hats, and even wore one while having sex, is speaking out about a treatment that changed his life.

Marcin Dobiasz, 35, originally from Poland, began losing his hair eight years ago.

An actor and DJ, he lost all of his confidence when he went from a sexual lothario to being compared to Patrick Stewart.

‘About two years ago, before the treatment, I stopped dating completely and I wouldn’t take a cap off my head,’ he told GSN.

August 15, 2014

Gay Star News readers get into the groove and have voted for the number one Queen of Pop track

It's Madonna's 56th birthday on Saturday (16 August), and what better time to rank 55 of her best songs?

From Madonna to MDNA, the Queen of Pop has given us some of the best music moments in the world.

GSN readers were also asked to vote for their favorite track.

See what song won your hearts below:

55. Give Me All Your Luvin'

August 12, 2014

For a same-sex couple in Merseyside, adoption provided the answer to their dreams of motherhood

When gay male couples think about starting a family, the options most usually explored are adoption, surrogacy or an arrangement with a willing female friend. When a female couple or single woman wants to have children, then sperm donation or IVF treatment are the methods often utilised. However, not all women want – or are able – to give birth to their own kids, and for them, fostering and adoption are a more likely route to family life.

August 6, 2014

San Francisco’s Tom Ammiano explains why he has drafted his ‘Modern Family Act’, and how it might benefit those – LGBT or heterosexual – who are already parents or planning for children in the future

Later this month, lawmakers in California are expected to vote on updating family laws in order to reflect the evolving nature and diversity of modern families.

Following the legalisation of gay marriage in California last year, and following some high-profile legal disputes involving parental rights, State Assembly member Tom Ammiano – a Democrat for the 17th District, San Francisco – has drafted what has been dubbed the ‘Modern Family Act’.

August 5, 2014

Gay film director Chris Mason Johnson talks to GSN about why a film about AIDS which isn’t depressing was difficult to market

There are many films documenting the effect of the AIDS crisis in the 80s, but almost none of them have done so like new film Test.

A group of young dancers deal with the competitive, erotic world of dance and the then unknown dangers of AIDS simultaneously.

Director Chris Mason Johnson sat down with Gay Star News to discuss his dance background which inspired the film, and why it was so hard to make.

Johnson revealed to GSN his film about AIDS is actually a very uplifting one, something audiences have learned not to expect.

August 4, 2014

'It was a joy working with that cast'

We at GSN know a few things. 

August 3, 2014

The UNDP, which is known to be a supporter of LGBT rights worldwide, had provided funding for the original two committees that drafted the codes but did not monitor their outcome, Sunil Pant, Nepal's first openly gay politician, tells Gay Star News

It’s a dramatic reversal for a country whose Supreme Court ruled in 2007 to ensure broad protections for LGBTI people and whose government was looking into legalizing same-sex marriage after a Supreme Court decision in 2008.

Today, the LGBTI community faces fresh opposition as the law ministry under law and justice minister Narahari Acharya of the ruling Nepali Congress is seeking to enact punitive laws to recriminalize gay sex, Sunil Pant, the country's first openly gay politician and former member of parliament, told Gay Star News in an email.

August 2, 2014

The English seaside city will spend the weekend dancing, with a park festival and street party

A group of LGBTI Ugandans were the happiest people dancing in the Brighton Pride parade on the south coast of England today (2 August).

They were celebrating the Ugandan Constitutional Court’s decision to strike down the Anti-Homosexuality Act yesterday.

While homosexuality remains illegal in Uganda, the court’s decision removes one of the world’s most draconian pieces of anti-gay legislation.

August 1, 2014

Baby sunglasses, swimming poncho towels, picnic playmats and ride-on luggage – Wauwaa has you and your tot covered this summer

Looking for the best essentials for your baby or toddler? Or maybe want an amazing gift? You need to discover Wauwaa.

They’ve scoured the world for outstanding products – many of them not available in the shops.

Here are the highlights of their awesome summer range (and you can get 30% off by entering ‘GSN’ at checkout):

1 Splash About Swim Nappy (£9.99)

August 1, 2014

Free gay social networking app GiFi has launched new features and is using Brighton Pride in the UK this weekend to share them with you

GiFi, the free, inclusive app on iPhone and Android has launched a range of new functions.

And the guys are going to be strutting their stuff at Brighton Pride on Saturday so you can find out what GiFi is all about.

GiFi is a next-generation free gay social networking app changing the way gay men chat, network and meet-up.

July 31, 2014

Victory: Harriet Nakigudde has a new life ahead of her, thanks Gay Star News readers for helping to save her

A Uganda woman who was raped by her uncle to ‘cure’ her sexuality has won the right to asylum in the UK.

Harriet Nakigudde, 30, is now a free woman after a traumatic two months at the mercy of the Home Office.

They refused to believe she was a lesbian despite the evidence and were going to send her back – possibly to her death.

That’s when campaigners rallied to rescue her and Gay Star News shared the truth about her story.

And a little less than an hour ago (31 July), her solicitor rang her to tell her she had won her appeal.

July 30, 2014

UK charity Ditch the Label is turning Brighton tropical to fight bullying at its first fundraising party

A party to beat anti-gay and other types of bullying is the newest addition to the summer line-up and GSN is delighted to be getting behind it.

Ditch the Label tells young people its ok to be different and works with schools, colleges and online to offer support and create engaging ways to stop kids from being bullies.

Now the UK charity is hosting its first fundraising party on 15 August.

The team will be transforming a popular venue in the seaside town of Brighton into a beach paradise, complete with palm trees and leis.

July 29, 2014

'None of you "knew." Nobody can know until the person says so themselves'

Olympic Gold Medalist Matthew Mitcham's comment that he was 'as surprised as anyone else' when fellow diver Tom Daley came out has been met with skepticism by some Gay Star News readers.

Among the comments posted on the GSN Facebook page today:

July 28, 2014

After threats of forced evacuation and complaints of ‘bad behavior’ for living in a sewer, a group of homeless LGBT Jamaicans could get a shelter for ‘skills training’ but not ‘to carry on homosexual activities’

Police and government authorities in Kingston, Jamaica are reportedly debating opening a new homeless shelter specifically for LGBT individuals.

July 25, 2014

A suicidal Orashia Edwards was suddenly detained earlier today, with no warning given to him or his family

A mother says the UK government is giving her bisexual son a ‘death sentence just for being who he is’.

Vienna Brown, mom to 32-year-old Orashia Edwards, spoke to GSN in tears about her son’s fate now he has been refused asylum in Britain.

He is to be sent back to Jamaica – where he has been vilified in the national press making him a target for anti-gay thugs.

Earlier today (25 July), Edwards was detained after a routine sign-in at Water Side Court in Leeds, north-east England.

July 19, 2014

'He asked for the biggest, baddest adventure and it was an honor to oblige'

It seems Zac Efron likes to be shirtless. Not that anyone here plans on protesting that.

The actor's most recent no shirt required stint is a clip from the upcoming show Running Wild With Bear Grylls.

In the reality show, the adventurer and host takes the famous through some difficult outdoor adventures. Efron, who will appear on the program's 28 July premiere, went rappelling in the Catskill Mountains.