Images via Gay Star News Ltd. and Wes Hicks on Unsplash
A popular and celebrated LGBTQ new site is sadly going away.
The BBC’s LGBTQ correspondent Ben Hunte broke the news that Gay Star News will cease trading tomorrow due to entering insolvency. Ceasing trading and being insolvent means the company cannot meet its debts as they fall due; or the value of the company’s assets is less than the total debt that it owes; or a merging of the prior two.
Ultimately, this means that Gay Star News is closing. Hunte also announced that approximately 20 people are now without a job, and staff were only given 48-hour notice.
Many responded to Hunte’s news with grief and sorrow.
Darren Styles, the owner of Attitude magazine, tweeted, “That is a great shame, LGBTQ media is a small enough place as it is. Attitude has a couple of digital vacancies coming if anyone wants to reach out to me. Can save some jobs at least.”
PinkNews’ CEO Benjamin Cohen tweeted, “Sorry to read this – good luck to staff for the future.”
This is truly a sad day for LGBTQ people. The LGBTQ news circuit is a small one and losing a prominent site like Gay Star News will a heavy burden on the community. Just as we are losing gay spaces in the physical world, we too are becoming limited in the digital one.
Gay Star News launched in January of 2012. At the time, directors Tris Reid-Smith and Scott Nunn projected that GSN was the first global LGBTQ news source. As they wrote in a 2012 article, “The gap in the market was most glaring with global reporting, particularly online. Gay, bi and trans people worldwide are connecting more than ever, but there was no shared place they could go for quality news, information and entertainment.”
And truly, that site lived up to that initiative. The site was especially focused on covering news from Asia, Africa, and Latin America to a degree that many other LGBTQ websites did not. In addition, the site was focused on creating first source coverage that was original and exclusive news.
Oddly enough though, Gay Star News has not commented or confirmed this news of closure. In addition, Companies House states that the Gay Star News Ltd. is still an active company with the next accounts due to be filled at the end of September 2019. Though, the company surely would have corrected Hunte by now if his tweet was incorrect. Plus, many of GSN’s writers are asking for work on Twitter at the moment, which unofficially confirms the news.
As such, it looks like we have lost a reliable ally in sharing and spreading LGBTQ news and content. And for that, this is news that we are all saddened to hear.