blood money

Advocate + Out Owner Here Media Is Happily Taking Target’s Ad Dollars

Visitors to and are going to find advertisements from gay America’s most-hated retailer of the moment, Target. And who owns those websites? Oh, just Here Media, the stumbling gay media company which professes to support the LGBT community. It does this, apparently, by invoicing the very company that’s been working to strip gays of their rights.

From donating cash to help elect anti-gay candidate Tom Emmer governor of Minnesota (he lost) to selectively targeting pro-gay activist groups because the retailer doesn’t want shoppers thinking the company supports gay marriage, Target has quickly earned a reputation of throwing LGBT Americans under the bus in favor of chasing a dollar. Now we see Here Media, run by Stephen Jarchow and Paul Colichman, is getting in the game. Even Lady Gaga realized she couldn’t reconcile her moral compass by supporting a company that doesn’t support her little monsters, terminating her ill-fated sales agreement.

But the soulless hacks running America’s largest LGBT media company into the ground? No such problem.

In the banner ads you see here (on above, and at right), a small Target “bullseye” is visible in the Converse One-Star ad; clicking on the ad takes you to

Here Media, of course, is the sister company of Regent Entertainment, which along with its dozen of shell companies was sued by Bank of America and Merill Lynch for perpetrating an alleged $90 million fraud. Maybe getting a check from Target is a way to put a down payment on their settlement? Funnily enough The Advocate, which is also owned by Here Media, has even covered the company’s anti-gay political donations. So it’s not like Here Media’s executives don’t know what they’re doing. In fact, it appears they know all too well what we’re doing: We couldn’t find any of these Target ads after clicking around on, perhaps because even Here Media’s group of stupids are smart enough to keep their news-watching readers away from their anti-gay ad campaigns. If you spot ’em, let us know. (Update: Commenter Anthony says he saw the Target ads on

Meanwhile, last month Here Media filed a lawsuit against Queerty claiming unfair competition based on our recent reports (here, here, and here) about the company’s alleged fraud scheme. The company claimed Queerty was only reporting on Here Media (and cousin Regent) to gain an unfair economic advantage in the LGBT media marketplace. Here Media, hilariously, then dismissed its own lawsuit against us, realizing any court would conclude that a company accused of a $90 million fraud (and, now, of taking cash from an anti-gay company) has newsworthy value, and using lawsuits to squash reporting is not only a gross misappropriation of tort law, but also illegal. Funnier still: In its court filing, Here Media made no mention of the whopping $90 million lawsuit that’s been slapped against its sister company, as if the two events are unrelated.

UPDATE: It appears a day after our post, Here Media has pulled this campaign from its websites. Did someone find a conscience?

UPDATE: Or not. Commenter Anthony says the ads are still live.

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  • Jim Hlavac

    On the other hand, why is Target advertising to gays if it doesn’t like us so much? Or don’t they know where their ad dollars go? Something’s weird here. Maybe those gays working in media buying for the retailer are not working from the same play book as the corporate donations office.

  • The sane Francis

    So, Here Media are run by money hungry cash whores. Yup, sounds similar to a great deal of corporate-men and women.

  • [email protected]

    After reading this somewhat over-dramatic pice about accepting banner ads from Target, I figures why not scroll around right here on Queerty and see what their banner ads promote.

    Here’s the 1st one I landed on, top of the page:

    “From: Dr. Ignatius Piazza
    Founder and Director
    Front Sight Resorts

    Dear Subscriber,
    Before I reveal the Biggest Secret in the Firearms Training Industry I want to let you know that at the end of this e-mail I have arranged for several law enforcement officers—who put their lives on the line every day— to tell you straight up, why they train at Front Sight. So now that you know the Cops are Waiting for You at the end of this e-mail… please enjoy The Biggest Secret in the Firearms Training Industry!”

    Stay classy, Queerty.

  • Brent

    So that explains why the Queerty/Regent reporting dropped off. Last you left it, Sean Carnage promised a major expose on Jon Barrett. Then, nothing… Since it’s illegal for Regent to squash your reporting, how about you continue down that path? (And maybe have your editors do the investigations instead of an ex-employee?) Thank you Queerty! You and AfterElton are the only ones bold enough to cover this story. It will pay off.

  • Eminent Victorian

    This! Keep this ind of reporting up, Queerty.

  • Steve

    I’m really getting sick of all of this crap about Target. Honestly, Queerty, you summed up how stupid all of this bitching is in this very article:

    “…gay America’s most-hated retailer of the moment…”

    Yeah, the most hated one of the moment. Target’s a business and they did business with a guy who has some stupid social views. If Target said they supported his anti-gay agenda, I’d be pissed. But they didn’t. They did business because they are a business. Everyone knows that in our society, dollar signs speak volumes. This is really nothing short of sensationalizing the issue, and to be honest, I’m over it. I don’t get beaten with a stick or preached to with a Bible when I go into my local Target – in fact, the employees actually make me feel welcomed there – so I’ll take my chances.

  • The sane Francis

    The head honchos of Target are almost across the board anti-gay and have personally donated to anti-gay organizations.

  • Riker

    @The sane Francis: So? When you boycott Target, you’re not hurting the corporate offices one bit. Instead, you’re hurting the rank-and-file employees, the part timers. When their store’s sales go down, corporate cuts the hours they can work.

  • Hank Hill

    Of course Queerty’s editor’s hate any gay publication with more journalistic integrity than them. This place sucks, the comments are the only good thing on here. For news, you should try Towleroad.

  • Jeffree

    In order to make decisions on where to shop, we need to compare stores in similar categories. Target’s political contributions are easy to track due to MN law. What about other states?

    In addition to contribs to PACS, how do stores compare in terms of contrib.s to the LGB communities, and how do their policies/ benefits for LGB employees stack up?

    GLAAD’s benchmarks are helpful, but incomplete.

    I wish we’d see some reporting on how alternatives to Target compare.

  • justiceontherocks

    @Jeffree: I am curious why no one seems to want to set fire to Best Buy, which gave MN Forward the same cash contribution as Target, $100,000.

    Much contribution information is publicly available. Go to, click on “Money Search” and have fun. Most of the contributions listed are to individual candidates, not other PACs.

  • SteveC

    Well done Queerty.

    Target is run by homophobic scum. This needs to be reported on in ALL gay media.

    While Target CONTINUES to fund the removal of LGBT people’s human and civil rights, no LGBT person should support them.

  • SteveC

    As for that vile uncle-tom Ricky Martin. Well the less said about that opportunistic whore’s efforts, the better.

  • SteveC

    Oh and in case anyone tries to pull the ‘Oh leave Target alone, they’re just running a business’ line, let me remind you.

    Target is a multi-billion dollar corporation, which is actively funding the removal of our civil rights.

  • Shannon1981

    Thanks for continuing to pick these stories up Queerty. Keep being provocative.

  • SteveC

    Message to Target:

    Along with a commitment to cease and desist from funding the removal of LGBT people’s civil rights; you also need to fire your bigot-in-chief Greg Steinhafel. The man is a toxic homophobe.

  • Tony

    While would Regent take money from Target? They have to get money from someone, anyone. Because, unlike their employees, their lawyers won’t do any work without being paid.

  • Anthony

    Advocate carries the same ad, ironically on the MARRIAGE page. So sad as I remember years and years ago it was an upstanding news source: – look on the right side.

    So, who can we go to now because this website is sooo poorly written (sorry).

    I’m just confused. Instead of trickle down economics we have trickle down biggotry that goes right through gay news sources. Can’t we get our act together? This, in part, is why it seems like it is two steps forward and one step back for our causes.

  • rf

    Last year, Queerty was running annoying pop up ads for months for St. Lucia, well known as a very unfriendly destination for gay travelers. I remember people complaining every day in the comments, so even if the ads were automatic based on an advertising buy, Queerty knew their readers were upset. it was about the same time as the prop 8 trial, I think. Doesn’t that make Queerty as guilty as

  • Anthony

    Yep. It falls under the same tired old category as how we have been spouting for years how we ‘need to be accepted’ and yet we all tear each other to shreds behind our backs. Look at the ads even? Washboard abs or you are worthless.

    Our 10-15% can’t get it’s act together and support itself. This is why everything is a long, long road. It is everyone for themselves apparently. It all boils down to two things – ego and money in gay society.

  • Anthony

    @Anthony: I guess the ads switch but that is where I saw it on the Advocate website. Point being, yes even the almighty Advocate supports Target.

  • Cam

    @Jim Hlavac: said…

    On the other hand, why is Target advertising to gays if it doesn’t like us so much? Or don’t they know where their ad dollars go?”

    probably the same reason the Morman chuch tried to buy ad space on Queerty and other gay blogs. They figure if they put some ad dollars out there the blogs or magazines won’t say anything about them.

  • Jeffree

    @SteveC: So, where do you suggest we shop?

  • The sane Francis

    There is a boycott of Best Buy as well. And Salvation Army, Coors, McDonald’s. We need to set the tone and send a message that no, we aren’t pushovers, and we aren’t going to get fucked with behind our backs but think saying sorry will make amends. It doesn’t. It’s 2011, time for games has long ended.

  • Jamie

    I wonder how Target execs feel about supporting a publication that espouses pedophilia? I won’t link directly to Advocate for the article, but this piece points to it:, in which the daddy’s boy attempts to say that pedophilia is an orientation and compares it with homo- and bisexuality. Please.

    Does Target sell the Advocate in their stores?

  • B

    No. 25 · Jamie wrote, “I wonder how Target execs feel about supporting a publication that espouses pedophilia? I won’t link directly to Advocate for the article,”

    Why not? I’m more likely to believe what you claim if you go directly to the original source. Giving the link does not mean you believe what the author is saying. And why would the article you did link to be in the .gl domain (Greenland, which has a tiny population and a lot of mountains and glaciers)?

    I’d suspect some sort of malware site without knowing more: a domain name like “” just sounds weird – it isn’t something an Inuit would use in his/her native language: Greenland’s population is 89% Inuit and 11% Danish/other. The main religion is Evangelical Lutheran, and its total population is estimated at 57,670.

  • Mike

    Jamie, no one sells The Advocate in their stores. It’s not available on newsstands any more, only as a “supplement” to subscription issues of Out magazine.

    Maybe the expose on Jon Barrett will be shelved now that he’s announced he’s leaving the company to head the West Coast bureau of Entertainment Weekly. I guess his association with some of the scummiest media folks on earth didn’t hurt his career any.

  • Bortnik

    ^ sounds like technology left grandpa in the dust

  • justiceontherocks

    @Jamie: That link has virus written all over it.

    Let’s assume the Advocate ran an article about a pedophile. What does that prove? Last night NBC ran a story on radiation in the water in Japan. Do you think they support nuclear meltdowns?

  • SteveC

    Jeffree – where do you live?

    There is nothing on sale in Target that cannot be sourced from a supplier who is not actively campaigning to remove your rights.

    Tske some responsibility. Do some research into your own neighbourhoold and choose only to shop at stores which are not trying to deny you, your rights.

    Target is a homophobic organisation, run by homophobic bigots.

    LGBT people should NOT be shopping there. And we should be encouraging our straight friends and family to join the boycott.

  • Jeffree

    @SteveC: So, you’re saying you haven’t found any better alternative?

    Not too convincing, Steve.

  • Eric

    Because they’re smarter and less petty than you, Queerty?

  • Jeff

    This is just ONE of the reasons I’m embarrassed to tell people my partner and I founded… It’s all so “unseemly” compared to the innocence of 1994.

  • JAW

    @The sane Francis:

    are we boycotting Coors again??? Damn… why was I not informed… that means, that since coors, Miller, Molson, and Blue Moon are all the same company now I have to boycott them also…

    When and why are we boycotting Mickey D’s???? I missed that one also… guess I should eat at Chick-fil-a… or perhaps Domino’s pizza??

  • JAW

    The boycott aganist Target is a huge flop. The fact that Queerty still tries to promote it is embarassing to the entire LGBT community.

    Ask your friends if they know about it, or why we are to boycott. I bet you will be surprised as to how many do not know, or do not give a shit.

    As an FYI… Target reported record sales and earnings for it’s last fiscal quarter Nov, Dec, & Jan. so if the Boycott were working Targer should be thanking us for not shopping.

    The only thing this so called boycott has done is to cost LGBT groups, esp in Minn, cash donations to help the LGBT community.

    Is that what the goal was???

  • Anthony

    Queerty: Your ‘Update’ is a fail. As of 6:30 CST on 6/28/11, I easily saw the Converse ad on the Advocate website. You just have to dig a little or rather do what is called fact checking. Might want to try it sometime.

  • Anthony

    So, basically, Queerty is as reliable as a source for gay news as Here Media. And both are as reliable for gay news as Fox News. Idiots. I’ll just watch Jon Stewart.

  • Ricky

    Why is the boycott against Target a huge flop – haven’t their earnings for every single month since July been at the very low end or below expectations – and here in LA – when Target wanted to open a second store in Hollywood – enjoying a gay-friendly reputation when they built the first store – their politics were revealed and an environmental impact statement was demanded delaying any opening by a year?

    While I am sure Target can live without the $200 a month I use to spend there – I am also sure I can live without any of the cheap crap I purchased there.

    Target – we are done – and BTW – on my last visit – really loved the Jesus wall plaque you were selling for $12.99 – Jesus in Target – your CEO must be so happy.


    Because I am kinda sorta of lazy tonite I am gonna repost a comment I made on the previous Target thread:

    Boys and Girls: News Flash!

    Every large company donates coin to both pro and anti Gay politicians……..they do a ton of research on who is going to enact more legislation which will benefit their business model. And that candidate gets the lions share of the coin………Thats the way business works in this country and it ain’t never gonna change……….

    Despite the above we should support companies that at least reach out to the Gays and make statements in support of us. There are companies like chik-a-fella that give free meals to Maggot Gallagher (god knows the last thing that cow needs is a free meal)……..Those are the ones who deserve to be targeted (hey, I made somewhat of a funny :p) for deliberate actions which have negative effect on our community…………

    As to Gay media taking coin from Target, guess what??? They need advertisers to exist. The Advocate has been around like forever, instead of simply folding the mag like dozens of others have the publishers at least gave it a reprive by making it an insert with Out. While it contains less than half of the pages in its previous inceptions at least it is still around and the media companies need major retailers to support it by spending advertising dollars. Cause in case you don’t know most magazines exist only because of advertising dollars.

    As stated above there is a delicate balance for coprorate America to follow. Appealing to differnet groups in this age of the internets means every decision is publicized in a nano second now. At least Target attempts to encourage tolerance of the Gays within its walls and does not directley pander to extreme anti-Gay groups. There are hundreds of other companies who do so and those are the ones who deserve to be targeted and not see a single rainbow hued dollar spent there……..

  • JAW

    @Ricky: … SHAME on u…
    get your facts correct… do not make statements like you work for FOX news.

    On feb 24 Target reported RECORD earnings for the 4th quarter of their fiscal year. The 4th Quarter includes Nov, Dec and Jan. That period of time covered most of the Boycott…. so is the Boycott working>>>>???? Because of the strong 4th quarter results, Target also reported RECORD earnings for the entire year.

    There are 26 wall street analysts that follow and report on Target… 7 of them say that if you own Target stock… keep it That it is a good investment. 9 of the 26 say if you don’t own the stock, buy it… 10 of the analysts say that we should by it NOW… none of them say to sell, or even think about selling it.
    So is the Boycott working???

    I see that you have stopped shopping there… I have a question for You… What company have you found to give your $2400 to that has given 100% of their political action committee money to candidates that are 100% GLBT Friendly.

    Target is not perfect… but I have yet to see ANYONE that has found a company that comes closer to perfect then Target… Have you found that Company? If you have… please tell us.

    as an FYI… I do not work for target, I don not own Target stock… and hell I very seldomly shop there…. I just hate it when we whine and do not check facts.

  • Jeffree

    @PlaysWellWithOthers: Welcome back! is that really you? lol, prove it !

    @JAW: thanks for the information on Target’s earnings. Ricky seems to be living in a bubble, where facts and comparisons aren’t required to advocate specific actions…. I don’t shop there, but because it’s inconvenient. I don’t shop at Walmart or KMart for other reasons…


    @Jeffree: Hey J, Its me (say hello to the swiss mister for me :p)

  • clark lane

    What’s the big deal – it’s capitalism! Target has great stuff at great prices. Shop where you want and stop trying to tell me where I have to spend my dollars. No wonder gays get such a bad rap all the time…always screaming about something.

  • frozen north

    Wow, this is just getting more and more ridiculous.

    The irony is that the more outraged, Fox-like articles that get posted here. The more comments that get generated and the more mouse-clicks Queerty earns, more advertising..more money..yadda yadda yadda.

    Or maybe I’m being too cynical?

  • Greg from Denver

    The Target ads were still up last night and are probably still there. The Advocate has been running stories about the Target Boycott for as long as it has been going on. The Advocate has been running stories about different Celebrities and groups who have chosen to support or ignore the boycott. They covered Lady Gaga’s on again off again relationship with Target. They had an article about Ricky Martin and Jennifer Hudson performing for the Target Board and their business dealings with the company. Shouldn’t they run a story about the advocates involvement with Target. Did they think it had consequences one way or another? Was it a pure “business” deal with out further ramifications? Did they choose to be part of Target’s healing process with the GLBT community? If the Advocate wants to keep its loyal readers, doesn’t it have an obligation to tell this story, too?

  • Ealan74

    I have not been taking part in this boycott. I think much has been made over a non-intended slight. Yes, Target should be do a bit more research before they make donations (which I’m sure they will after this fiasco), but the larger question is- what exactly does Target have to do to end this boycott? Everyone seems so obsessed with making Target feel the wrath of the LGBT community, but that’s not a solution.

    At the end of the day, what is it that we really want?

  • personanongrata

    Joy of joys, actually, that the broadest level of hypocrisy is finally being exposed at this former gatekeeper of opinion for LGBT readers. Um…Target plays both sides of the fence, in terms of political contributions. Okay, can’t really expect anything better of the global corporate world. But, naive of me to hope, shouldn’t we expect just a little bit better of Here!? Here! — more like, Nowhere!

    Ah, well… it’s all in the cards. People used to lambast Judy Wieder mercilessly when she was editorial director at the old LPI Media. But literally she was the only good thing about upper management at the chronically dysfuncational old LPI (years before the PlanetOut and Here Media debacles).

  • kevin





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