Since You Asked

All Your Queerty Questions Answered

tom-fordEarlier this week, we opened the lines and asked you, our loyal readers, what your most burning questions for the Queerty team were. You came up with 42 (which is an answer in itself, as Douglas Adams fans know), but we’re just going to answer the most asked/ interesting ones.

Ready for some navel-gazing self-absorbed fun? Here we go!

How many people are actually employed with Queerty?

Take a look at the masthead and you’ll have the answer. For the lazy, on the editorial side, we have three people. Our site founder and Jossip-guru David Hauslaib is our fearless leader, Cord Jefferson is our Managing Editor and then there’s yours truly, your editor, Japhy Grant.

How many do actual reporting?

For 99.9% of the site, the answer is one, which would be me. For long-time Queerty readers, you’ll notice that while the site has continued to do its daily digest of the latest gay news you need to know, we have also introduced our own original reporting. I generate about four original stories a day. Up until a month ago, I was also doing all the blogging as well, but the reality is, doing 20 blog posts, plus four 700-1200 word features a day was a quick route to the funny farm, so now I focus on original content.

How much original reporting goes into articles beyond a quick surf of the intertubes?

That’s really a case by case question. Some of our stories require a lot of reporting– be it going to events, conducting interviews or plain old research. A lot of the Prop. 8 stories we did earlier this year required intensive reporting.

There’s no such thing as a “definitive story” here. News constantly evolves and changes and many times we’ll start off with a smaller item and then will develop it as I learn more about it from sources, which is not unlike any other regular news agency, except that it’s a one-man show. If it seems like we’re blurring the lines between blogging and more traditional news, you’re right– and it’s absolutely intentional. For the most part, I try to walk a fine line between writing a ‘just the facts story’, ‘analysis story’ and opinion piece. It’s still the Wild West out there for online media and that’s part of the fun.

Does anyone there use a phone for interviews, or is it all e-mail?

I think I’ve done two interviews by email the entire time I’ve been here and they were both within the first two weeks. The problem with email interviews is that they are boring as hell. There’s no chance for follow-up, you miss out on random thoughts and asides that could lead to interesting places and while it would be time-saving to just copy and paste stories, the result is dull, dull, dull.

When and why did this beef with Michael Lucas start?

lucas500 What beef with Michael Lucas? We interviewed him when he got married in California earlier this year and we chat back and forth now and then. Also, come on– it’s Michael Lucas! The guy could give Madonna a run for stirring up controversy.

Just because someone is newsworthy or says something inopportune doesn’t mean we hate them. That goes for our ‘beef’ with Regent Media as well. They’re the Comcast of the gay world and scrutinizing what they do is healthy for everyone.

The only person I’d say we have a beef with is L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center CEO Lori Jean, whose refused to be interviewed by us via her press rep several times, because she doesn’t think she’d get a “fair shake” since we’ve been critical of her in the past. It’s pretty weak sauce, if you ask us. We’ve interviewed plenty of Prop. 8 leaders– and in the end, what we try to do is facilitate conversations between gay community leaders and well, the gay community.

What’s with this new lame ass format? Why are their no thumbnails? Are you planning to take reader’s complaints about the redesign into account rather than just arrogantly discounting them and sending them to the “classic” site? God, I hate the new format, it sucks, etc…

For starters, I have nothing to do with the site’s format. My purview is purely content. That said, as anyone who’s been here knows, the format continues to evolve over time and we do read what you guys say about the site and I know for a fact that we’ve implemented many of your suggestions.

Remember, the number of people who comment on the site vs. the number who actually visit is a huge difference and we have to look out for the folks who don’t comment as well. Our redesigns have increased unique visitor traffic quite a bit, which is the best indication we have that we’re doing something right.

Where’s the music and art?!?!!?

Well, for a while now, Thursdays have been our unofficial arts day here (which we just made official this week), but if you want more arts coverage, I’m more than happy to give it to you. It’s been a very news dominated few months here, which is part of the reason why you haven’t seen as much coverage, but we have stuff planned down the line that you should enjoy. I love story tips, too.

Where is all the international news? You know, the stuff that makes you guys sound like well-rounded (and aware) people rather than self-absorbed assholes?

I think we do pretty good coverage of international issues (our story on LGBT Iraqi’s this week for example, was picked up two days later by The New York Times), but this site definitely has a U.S. viewpoint. That said, we picked up on the Sengalese gay men being jailed story about a week before anyone else in the U.S.

Would it be impossible to have some female Morning Goods once in a while?

sexy_cowgirls_jpgWe can give it a try. Our sense is that it’s pretty easy to find hot ladies on the Internet, less so for the guys. If you have a suggestion, send it to us. Until then, here are some sexy cowgirls to tide you over.

Who picks the Morning Goods? And if it’s solely Japhy then what’s his favorite body type?

Yup, Morning Goods is my responsibility. My favorite body type is pretty varied. If anything, I have a thing for short guys. I was pretty glued to all the men’s gymnastics events during the Olympics. I suppose the thing most MG Monkeys would find surprising is that I’m not very into twinks. My ideal guy would probably be a short lumberjack with a five o’clock shadow and a devil grin. Spread the word around.

Why is it so hard for Queerty to feature more than a handful of black men in a years worth of morning goods?? The same question goes for asians, and “non white” latinos as well. Btw, despite the fantasy, Brazil is not a suburb of Germany.

I think I’ve explained this before. We don’t have our own art department here, so we have to choose from what’s out there– and when it comes to the world of male models, there’s a certain type that seems to dominate. It’s certainly not out of personal preference– my goal with Morning Goods is to pick as many different varieties of guys as possible. Here’s where you can help. See a guy that’s smoking hot and great MG material? Let me know.

Why does Queerty stoke the flames of gay racism, by constantly scapegoating black people (all over the world) as the cause of all gay oppression? Despite the rhetoric on site, homophobia is not particular to any ethnic group more than others.

Well, I disagree with the premise of your question. We were one of the first sites to debunk the ‘Blacks were the reason Prop. 8 passed” myth with our interview with Nate Silver, we wrote about how Coretta Scott King was a gay civil rights supporter, we’ve reached out to African-American bloggers, we’ve asked outright if the gay community is racist. I think it would be far worse for us to simply ignore the issues that people are talking about.

Why is Japhy so full-of-himself? Especially after the bad redesign?

picture-21Ouch. Again, the redesign is not a Japhy Grant joint– and for good reason, if you look at my own website, you’ll see I have no business designing websites– but I hate to think I come off as ‘full of myself’. Most writers are starved for feedback, but one of the great things about Queerty is that I get tons of it. Collectively, you folks are smarter than I ever will be and I make no pretense in thinking otherwise.

Still, you have to develop a little bit of a shell if you’re going to get called names by anonymous people now and then. When I first started, it really bothered me. I was convinced everyone hated me, but my attitude is that if we keep producing great content, folks will come around. Some of you have and I really appreciate the kind words. For the haters, I’m always open to suggestions on how we can do a better job.

How much does Queerty love Sufjan Stevens? Is he considered a gay idol, or just another ambiguous, ambivalent, heartthrob?

Queerty loves Sufjan Steven a lot (going back to my preferred type– Sufjan Stevens is it). We would love him a lot more if he stopped dicking around and released more albums, but overall, he’s pretty awesome.

What can I say? We have a thing for guys who pen songs with ridiculously long titles that are played on the banjo. It’s a legitimate fetish! I’ve noticed in the comments that some people think he’s closeted because he’s religious, but he’s Episcopalian guys, a faith that’s pretty welcoming to the gays. We don’t know which team he pitches for, but yeah, pretty dreamy.