Just when you thought it was safe to read online again. WWD and GAVoice are currently reporting that the new owners of some of your favorite online LGBTQ entertainment sites aren't as gay friendly as they seem.
Via Ga Voice
New owners of Out magazine and the Advocate found to have donated to anti-LGBTQ politicians, reported WWD.
Founders and operators of Oreva Capital, stepbrothers Adam Levin and Maxx Abramowitz, acquired the two LGBTQ publications under the umbrella of PRIDE media last September.
WWD found that Levin has donated to a numerous Republicans who have taken anti-LGBTQ stances, like supporting religious-based discrimination. These Republicans include Devin Nunes, Dean Heller, and Josh Mandel.
The two owners are also the chief executive officer and lead investor, respectively, of High Times magazine parent High Times Holdings.
High Times praised Dana Rohrabacher on its yearly list of cannabis supporters.
Rohrabacher has recently said gay people can be denied the right to home-ownership and has consistently opposed legal advancements for the LGBTQ community.
Last year, HTH posted a $13.6 million loss. So far this year, it’s lost $12.3 million and is sitting on about $68 million in debt. Moreover, its public filing, which is set to close at the end of this month, had only resulted in around $5 million in investments as of three weeks ago, far short of its $50 million goal.
A source familiar with the company told WWD that the public filing of High Times was supposed to be a model for Pride Media, which Levin is said to have acquired opportunistically, seeing a largely untapped market in LGTBQ media. However, a new owner that not only is perceived as relatively disinterested in the community it serves, but has given money to politicians who worked against that community, didn’t sit well with a lot of now former staffers, who had a sense of mission in their work, sources said.
Levin has donated to a number of Republicans including Devin Nunes, Dean Heller and Josh Mandel (all of whom have publicly taken anti-LGTBQ stances, like supporting religion-based discrimination), and Dana Rohrabacher (who recently said gay people can be denied the right to buy a home and has consistently opposed legal advancements for the LGTBQ community) was praised on this year’s High Times’ list of cannabis supporters.
Of Levin’s political donations, a Pride spokesman said, “Adam is a staunch supporter of pro-Israel, pro-cannabis and LGBT issues and consistently works across the political spectrum to ensure he’s advocating effectively on behalf of each of these communities.”
But a tipping point for a lot of Out staff came once being regularly paid for their work was no longer a certainty.
A number of sources told WWD that issues with being paid are something of an editorial legacy at Out, but it started to really affect the staff earlier this year after Oreva came in and put in place new ceo Nathan Coyle. One of his first moves was to end a system at Out that had been in place since at least 2012, wherein editorial employees were paid not by then-parent company Here Publishing, like noneditorial staff, but through a separate company, Grand Editorial, owned and operated by former editor in chief Aaron Hicklin (he left over the summer, too).