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PlanetOut In Financial Remission And Buying An Island

Updated on July 10, 2007

PlanetOut Is In Financial Remission And Buying Everything In Sight Including A, At Least An Island! - Don't Get Me Started!

Gay Monopoly giant PlanetOut (that owns everything from The Advocate magazine to websites such as was in financial trouble. In a previous blog I theorized it was because having bought up every fag rag imaginable they managed to be the major publisher player of gay periodicals but then promptly made them all the same magazine except for the cover. (Read that blog here...PlanetOut Really Down And Out? ) What was that word we used to fling about so often when discussing the gay community...oh right, diversity, that's it, remember? I almost forgot. Well I'm happy to say that no one is going to lose their jobs because PlanetOut managed to pull out (like a straight boy on prom night) and not only have they supposedly overcome their financial hardships but they've bought a gay travel agency, gay cruise line and in the works is a gay island too. PlanetOut is in financial remission and buying everything in sight including a, at least an island! - Don't Get Me Started!

First let me reiterate that I'm happy that a huge gay conglomerate exists and that they are getting themselves back up on their well manicured feet again. It's rumored that one of the organizations that helped them out of their financial hard times was a Bill Gates organization. (Oh Bill, I'm gay too, can I have some money too before those checks come into my account at the end of the week and bounce?) So make no mistake about it, I think that a company like PlanetOut is a good thing and I'm glad that they are getting fiscally sound again.

However, one would have to be blind not to see that they brought this upon themselves. Truly, all of their publications look exactly alike at this point. While some would disagree as their masturbation magazines run the gamut from hairless to hairy, it does get me when the other magazines like The Advocate, a long time beacon of justice and social relevance for the gay community has become nothing more than a bunch of glossy pages with articles featuring straight celebrities where the interviewer droolingly asks such probing questions as, "If you had a boy crush on someone, who would it be?" One of the latest developments is that the editor of The Advocate has decided to stop shipping it in its white plastic condom sleeve and allow the magazine to ship sans wrapping. This is really fine considering the covers aren't the least bit controversial anymore and while they say they're doing it to "take a stand" and "be more green" we all know that someone figured out how much money they could save by shipping it without the modern day plain brown wrapper. Frankly I'm more embarrassed that my mailperson is going to see that I subscribe to a magazine with so little substance and not the fact that it features gay articles. The odd thing about The Advocate is that on one of the very last pages of each issue they show an old cover from years gone by. How they can not themselves be looking at these old issues and using it as a barometer for themselves is beyond me. I say, "Advocate start becoming an advocate for our community again, please." While I hope that the financial rebirth will have them doing some self-examination, I doubt that the glossy trend will change for The Advocate and so my subscription has not been renewed.

Meanwhile, PlanetOut also bought a gay cruise line and travel agency. I'm all good with that too and hope that it is enormously successful. Where I was taken aback was the news that they want to also buy an island and turn it gay (or as we would say, redecorate it with gays). This sounds like a not so great idea to me. First of all, dare I say it? <whisper> I see and like straight people! I know, I know, I'm just talking crazy now but my parents are straight and so are many of my friends and relatives and even if it's self imposed isolation, putting all gays on an island just makes me feel like we're back in World War II at the camps or creating a modern day leper colony. Maybe it's due to all the stereotypical media images I see representing us but I can't help but think that an entire island that is run by, for and inhabited by the gays would be more than a little overwhelming to me. I see older men in their linen Capri pants, loose fitting gauze tops and espadrilles walking the beach looking at the hairless young boys in their Speedos. One of the older men waves at the passing boys, "Say boys, don't forget there's a Bette Midler movie fesssstival tonight at The Gaiety on Main Street. Bring the hankies cause they're showing Beaches and Jinxed! Ta!" While this may seem like paradise to some, it just sort of creeps me out, you know, too "Night of the Living Gays" or something. While I understand the need for a sense of community, for me personally, I've never had the need to move to a "gay ghetto" or restrict myself to only having friends of the gay persuasion.

You see, I've never been a man that recoiled and made the fake throwing up gesture when someone talks about a vagina or cringes at the thought of women in general (unless you're telling them how to do their hair or dress). I may be stereotypical in a lot of ways but this is not one of them. I can't imagine what I would do without my straight friends (both male and female) and so I don't think I'd even want to visit The Island of Misfit Gays. So you'll all have to sail away to that mythical land of great arms, abs and asses without me. Have a drink with an umbrella in it for me and toast to my good health living among the mere mortals.

Yeah, I'm glad that PlanetOut is making some changes and getting themselves together but like a friend that gets off the booze, I do hope somewhere along the line they go into therapy and discover why they only represent one type of gay when there are so many different varieties of us out here, there and everywhere. Because you see, though some don't believe it, the one thing I do have is hope. PlanetOut is in financial remission and buying everything in sight including a, at least an island! - Don't Get Me Started!

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