10 foot pole

How The Media Excuses Itself for Labeling Adam Lambert Gay

Entertainment Weekly was the most bold of any mainstream entertainment press, putting Adam Lambert’s sexuality right on the cover. But without an official acknowledgment from the Idol runner-up about being a big ‘mo, the media are still adding asterisks and question marks to the discussion on whether Lambert’s gay (he is) and whether his sexuality played a role in his ultimate loss (it did). How fitting, then, that Robin Roberts introduces this Good Morning America segment. From one not-on-the-record gay to another.

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  • Sean

    Inspired by the queerty bloggers, from now on every time I miss a promotion, I’m playing the “it’s because I’m gay” card. Who cares if it’s because I spend more time on the web than doing actual work while at my desk? It’s obviously the vast heterosexual conspiracy’s fault.

    There are so many more valid reasons for him losing simply because he’s gay.

    -He was the favorite, and Americans like underdogs.
    -Danny Gokey’s fans voted for Kris instead.
    -The people of Arkansas rallied around their native son in huge numbers, similar to Arizonans voting in mass for Jordin Sparks or other mid-to-small states rallying around their native sons & daughters on the show.

  • Sean

    gah…”more valid reasons for him losing THAN simply because he’s gay.

  • Steve

    I’m sick of the gay card also. Adam has a future in Broadway but Kris improved every week and was more marketable. Either could have won.

  • Cam

    UGH, I’m totally turned off on Lambert now. I HATE HATE HATE when people play the “Kevin Spacey”, “Sean Hayes” B.S. wink wink car.

    This is from Entertainment Weekly….

    “”I want to just get this question out of the way first, something that’s been dangling a bit over you for the whole season: Would you like to put to rest all the speculation about your sexuality?
    It’s not dangling over my head. [Laughing] It may be dangling over yours, but it’s not over mine. Yeah, I think speculation keeps things really interesting.

    So you don’t want to say anything one way or the other?
    Like I said, I think speculation keeps things very, very interesting. [Laughs]”


    No Adam, the speculation DOESN”T keep things very interesting, it just means that you are the same typical coward that Hayes, Kevin Spacey and all the others are. I was going to make it a point to buy your CD, but if you are going to act like this is 1993, then I hope they buy your CD in Utah, because I’m sure as hell not going to run out and waste money on one more Hollywood Closet Case.

  • Janine

    Don’t get me wrong i love Kris but i think everyone knows that Adam should have won! Theres to many like Kris out there. For a change someone like Adam Lambert comes along an idol that nobody has ever seen before. When He started to sing he blew me away I said that the american idol rite there. He didnt win why because of his questionable sexuality? Thats wrong if its the reason, for Clay Aiken and his sake. Kris is awesome he can play guitar and piano and sing out of this world but theres to many of him out there Adam should have one.

  • Jeff

    Oh Please Haters of the “Gay Card” just face it it was. Evangelical Chrustian sites around the net were telling people to vote for Kris. So it was the GAY Card pure and simple but so what? Just accept it. It’s true but its not a huge deal.

    Lambert probably got the better seal by NOT winning. He will be much bigger than Allen in the long run.

    It was the Gay Card

    Its not a BIG Deal

    And its stupid to continue debating this.

  • Jeff


    Theres probably something in the AI contract about him ansewering questions about it. Just as there is probably something in Allens contract about witnessing and being a big ole blatent Christian.

    Blame AI

    Don’t blame Lambert

  • coolworld

    It’s only a title that Kris has to really live up to now. Adam will have no problem getting deals.

    America picked the safe one, or more like middle america did. They’re the ones that usually have the largest voting bloc but then forget about buying any CDs afterwards to put their money where their mouths are. No AI winner from the south ever made it big and I don’t count Texas and Oklahoma as the deep south.

    CAM, you’re pathetic. Even Adam knows it’s not the ‘gay’ card. He’s never said anything about it being that way.

  • Ian Jehle

    I’ve never watched the show, so I have nothing to say about the singing merits of the two finalists. What made reading about this year’s competition so compelling for me was the idea that a gay man, specifically a man that people identify as gay, could break into a part of American culture that previously had been off-limits to gay people.

    I recently heard a story that Nichelle Nichols wanted to leave the original Star Trek series after the first season. She decided to stay after Martin Luther King contacted her and convinced her how important it was that America see a black woman who was not a maid. Not only was Lt. Uhura not a maid – she was the first African American sex symbol that millions of Americans had ever seen.

    For many gay people I think this competition is about more than who is the better singer – it’s about seeing one of our own become something that until now we were never allowed to be – whether that’s a senator, a four star general, a professional quarterback or a pop star.

  • Bitch, please!

    Did he not win because of homophobia or was it because he was too “edgy” for middle America (who are the majority, by the way)? I too was ready with my gay-card and up in arms. But after reading some of the comments here I wondered, could it be they just liked Kris and nothing more? It is plausible, you know.

  • Kait

    I don’t understand… how people like Adam Lambert’s voice? I honestly think my ears start bleeding internally each time I hear him, I HATE his voice, I don’t know why people like him so much. It has NOTHING to do with him allegedly being gay. It’s terrible that just because his voice is so high people I know have classified him as gay. That’s not always the case, but his voice almost seems as if it’s Aretha Franklin’s voice 3 times higher than usual, it’s just not flattering. Also, KISS… NO. He cannot pull that off.

    Adam Lambert fans: What do you like about his voice?

  • AustinAbomination

    The media can excuse itself for calling him gay because he is gay. It has never been a question. What’s wrong with calling a spade a spade?

  • JayCanuck

    I am in love with Adam Lambert’s voice, but he didn’t lose because he was a gay, it was simply because of the votes. After Gokey was gone, most of those votes shifted to Kris and his similar style of singing.

    That being said, I’m glad Adam did win. Idol runner-ups tend to do quite well and in a few cases, better than the winner, in their music career. Plus, now Adam doesn’t have to sing that awful “No Boundaries” song, lol

  • JayCanuck


  • Cam

    @coolworld: Coolworld, You’are an idiot. You said “CAM, you’re pathetic. Even Adam knows it’s not the ‘gay’ card. He’s never said anything about it being that way.”


    I never said anything about it being “The Gay Card” I was referencing an interview Adam just gave where he refused to say whether or not he was gay. I for one am tired of these celeb hypocrites. And before you attack somebody you may want to read their entire post. He is gay, he has a boyfriend, he introduced the guy to the other idols etc… We saw shot after shot of Kris Allens homecoming queen wife, we heard about Danny Gokey’s wife who passed away, yet Adam wants to play coy…yeah, we’ve never had to waste time dealing with THAT before.

    Why doesn’t he just go the full Rosie O’Donnell route and pick a famous female celeb (A female tom Cruise) and pretend to be in love with her?

  • Dick

    Adam is sooooooooooooooo gay!

  • osocubano

    I think the better singer won.

  • wowjustwow

    I really don’t understand this post. Is Queerty pissed because the the media labelled Adam as gay without an acknowledgement from him? Or is Queerty pissed that the media didn’t label him strongly enough?

    Or is Queerty just indiscriminately pissed?

  • GENE


    Many people like his voice that’s why he is number 4 on ITunes with his version of “Mad World” right now, ahead of people like Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, AND Kris Allen. He has 10 songs in the iTunes top 100 downloads, and Kris has 7.

    Kris Allen fans: Can you point out one thing that is a true standout about him. In my eyes, he’s just another dude strumming his guitar with a mediocre voice. Does anyone really think he is a superstar material?

  • Queenie Mae

    Adam is sooooo gay!

  • Derek

    If you’re going to use the gay card as a legitimate excuse (it’s not), you’re still out of luck. Adam invalited his own card by not stepping up and owning and wearing proudly the fact that he’s gay.

    How in the world does it help the gay community when someone in a position like him won’t take on the media, let the world know who he is, and then move on with it rather than letting it stay a big deal?

    If the gay thing was even a factor, can you blame people for voting against him when he himself acts like it’s something to be avoided publicly?

    In the end, I just don’t think as many people were a fan of the gay banshee as was hyped up. It was about the music folks, Adam even said so.

  • Cam

    @Derek: Totally Agree!

  • Windyloo

    I can say that I have downloaded the studio versions of Whole Lotta Love, Mad World, and Change is gonna Come. I have listened to Whole Lotta Love repeatedly in the past week and have it on my playlist alongside White Stripes, Stone Temple Pilots, The Strokes, Janis Joplin, Jimmy Hendrix, and Queen among others- Adams voice is just as sexy, in your face, and powerful as those others. I also love the other two songs and have them mixed in with my eclectic collection of music. The three are very different and equally strong. That is what impresses me about his voice. It is strong, aggressive, and gender bending. I find that incredibly sexy.

    As for his performance? I would pay 100 dollars to see a show he put together. Some people just know how to perform. I saw Rufus Wainwright and it was the same way- you get your money’s worth. He is the package deal and so is Adam. Does that mean i am going to like every song or like them all equally? No. But he is the first Idol contestant I have ever seen that made me think about going to their tour just to watch him live. I think I will wait unitl he has his own show so he can be as out there and over the top as he wants to be. That is what I love.

  • Jayson

    A gay person in the entertainment business! That is very distressing news to me. (wink)

  • Andi

    That’s the thing- these kids are a product of the “overnight celebrity” that comes with American Idol fame. They may be coached a bit over the duration of the show in how to handle interviews and the media, but 15 some odd weeks isn’t all that much time to make oneself a PR expert.

    I also want to know WHY it is so important for Adam to have to come out and say the words “I am gay”. I don’t feel the need to tell people I am bisexual because my sexual preference is not the most interesting thing about me and neither is Adam’s. So there are pictures online of him kissing other men and dressing drag- SO WHAT? He said it best: “I know who I am.”

    By calling him a hypocrite for not outright stating he is gay just further enforces the idea that we should percieve someone in differently depending on whom they love.

  • pz

    My six-year-old daughter and I were practically inconsolable after Adam’s loss last night. My wife wasn’t too happy either.

    I would like to make a couple of quick points. As background, I’m a Libertarian blogger who tends to find himself lumped in with social conservatives, but I fully support the gay rights initiatives that I’m aware of, which mostly deal with gay marriage rights. We have no right to make people second class citizens just because of which “team” they play on. I also happen to be one of those seemingly rare Christians who constantly battles the fundamentalists over their gay bashing.

    Sooooo, anyway, my real point is that I wish that people on both sides of the far reaches of the political spectrum, both donkeys and elephants, would stop politicizing every little thing in our culture, including Adam’s (tears for the loss) gayness.

    I live in a red state, and know several hard-right conservatives who were pulling for Adam last night. Most of these folks are, sadly, against gay marriage, but don’t seem to have any problems with the LBGT community outside of that one (major) issue.

    From my safe perch outside the LBGT community, it appears to me that a lot of the barriers and bigotry are actually falling, slowly, but that the media just won’t let it die and are prolonging the fight for profit. They are positively intent upon painting the entire country either as right-wing radicals or left-wing radicals, as gay or straight, as black or white. They want us to fight, or at least find a presumed fight, because it’s good for business.

    A lot of folks in red states voted for Kris because he has that folk, almost country, music sound to him which is so popular here. Also, American Idol made it a point in the last couple of weeks to highlight Kris’s family, including his tearful father, which a lot of us, no matter what state we live in, find somewhat endearing. And Kris, to be honest, did come on strong the last couple of weeks, though he is clearly vocally inferior to Adam.

    Sorry for writing the comment from hell on your site. I would like to put a link to something I wrote about this media tendency. If that’s against the rules, please just delete it. By the way, I have a lot of gay friends from the local community theater (stereotype, but true), so I tend to use more open language, as opposed to PC language. Hopefully that’s not offensive to anyone.

    Will Adam Lambert be the first gay American Idol?

  • Prof. O. G. Whataschnozell

    So help me I hope this is the last season that an obvious queen makes it to the finals. Good lord children Elvis was not picked. Ok.

    And the sun DID rise this morning too.

  • G

    Seriously, people need to calm down. Kris is a great singer who, judging by his close and affectionate relationship with Adam, is gay-friendly. The Allen family and the Lambert family are both very close as well. He’s not a crazy fundie. He’s been very clear that he didn’t want people to vote for him based on his religion.

    The world isn’t homophobic – just the fact that a Christian missionary from Arkansas and a flamboyant musical theatre kid from LA are close friends is a testament that things HAVE changed.

  • dgz


    and they didn’t vote based on religion. they voted based on regionalism. over 1/3 of the total votes came from arkansas.

  • George

    Isn’t it obvious what he’s doing? Why should he answer that question on EW online or during a backstage press conference? If he’s smart, he’ll come out in style – with a big People or US Weekly cover spread, where he can stand to make some money off of the “EXCLUSIVE!” admission.

  • Cam

    @Andi: You said “By calling him a hypocrite for not outright stating he is gay just further enforces the idea that we should percieve someone in differently depending on whom they love.”


    No, by them not coming out THEY are stating that they should be percieved differently. Kris talked about his wife, Danny talked about his wife, Lil Rounds talked about her Husband. Everybody else talks about their social life. Yet These closet cases won’t. They are the ones acting as if it is shameful. And as for it not making a difference, trust me, to the gay little kid tormenting themself trying to deal with the fact that he or she is different, finding out that somebody else out there is like them IS a major deal.

  • Cam

    @George: you said “Isn’t it obvious what he’s doing? Why should he answer that question on EW online or during a backstage press conference? If he’s smart, he’ll come out in style – with a big People or US Weekly cover spread, where he can stand to make some money off of the “EXCLUSIVE!” admission.”


    Very sharp point. I hope you are right, but I doubt it.

  • Tweek

    The “it’s because he’s a big gay drag queen card” is overplayed here. It’s because he just wasn’t as cute as Kris, and he was a little scary/intimidating. Like when he was singing with Kiss, he looked like he totally fit in. I see him in a band like Panic At The Disco. Although teen girls and emo guys like that, more people like cute boy-next-door better.

    And why should someone’s sexuality matter when the point of the tv program is to be the best singer with the best stage presence/showmanship? They’re not porn stars, which is the only case in which someones sexuality might validly be called into question.

  • Leslie

    Ok so he IS Gay! BFD!
    I had a suspicion Kris (isn’t w/ a K the feminine spelling? btw)
    Anyway, Adam was a shoo-in we thought, but when you really think about an American IDOL I don’t see Adam as the one at all. Too edgy. Not that I care, I would by his music if I liked it. More looking forward to seeing how Allison Iraheta & Megan Joy end up in a year or two. Face it Idol is about singing and chances and popularity. Look at past seasons- look at Jennifer Hudson! I wish them all luck. Adam is Hot! Even from this 51 year old straight white lady’s perspective!

  • Prof. O. G. Whataschnozell

    @G: “Seriously, people need to calm down. Kris is a great singer who, judging by his close and affectionate relationship with Adam, is gay-friendly”.

    I don’t find it hard to believe this guys handlers told him to be friendly to Adam because it was best to have the public question his sexuality and since Adam was clearly “out there” more conservative but gay friendly young people who watch this trash would vote for him, which is what they obviously did.

    Sometimes wearing a neon sign everywhere you go is not always the best thing to do for your long term career goals.

  • The_FNG

    @Cam: Well, for the record, I despise Perez Hilton, and his efforts to “out” people who don’t necessarily WANT to “come out”. I will go as far as to wish “ill will” on him for doing what he does.

    I still firmly believe it’s Adam’s personal RIGHT to handle invasive personal questions any way he desires.

    I will buy both Kris’ and Adam’s CD’s when they come out.

  • andwele

    A guy who appears on AI has pictures of him in drag and kissing a guy on the internet. When confronted about it he doesn’t deny anything but some people are upset because he doesn’t actually say “I AM GAY?” A picture says more then a thousand words.

    Adam has a great voice, big range, an over the top stage presence and a humlbe off stage personality.

    If AI can be seen as the biggest singing audition in the USA Adam has played the game very smart. If he had come out during the show he might not have reached the finals and if one thing is apparent to me it is the fact that with every round he advanced he showed to industry that he is versatile both with the use of his voice (toning it down or “screeching” on key)and music style. When it comes down to judging people on talent personal issues are only important if they are a liability to an artists performing skills. Adams sexuality is not a liability when it comes to his talent as an artist and while the other contestant may have banked on personal stories to appeal to the general audience it adds absolutely nothing to their talent. It only serves as a way for instant gratification, in this instance the chance to win a million dollar recording contract.

    You can only use the personal story card this many times until people get desensitized and people will start judging artist on musicality and performance. I think Adam has the edge on the other contestants when it comes down to these qualities. He may have alienated middle america with all the hyped up media attention regarding his stage presence and sexuality but there is a whole world outside the USA that isn’t as polarized about artist rising above mediocricy, averageness and being different.

    Wether he chooses to come out or not is a big non issue to me. He has allready shown kids in the USA that being different (gay, bisexual, emo, goth, you name it) it okay as long as you are confident in whatever talent it is you have. To me the message that different in all its aspects is okay is way more powerfull then making it a gay message alone.

  • jason

    Does anyone know of one openly gay or bisexual American male who has had a top ten hit in 40 years of music while being out? I can’t even think of one! There’s no doubt music is one of the most homophobic industries in America.

    It’s absolutely amazing when you consider how much gay men like music. We love to dance, sing etc. Yet when we’re dancing, we’re usually dancing to songs sung by women who claim to bisexual!! LOL. We’ve become dysfunctional.

  • jason

    Does anyone know of one openly gay or bisexual American male who has had a top ten hit in 40 years of music while being out? I can’t even think of one! There’s no doubt music is one of the most homophobic industries in America.

    It’s absolutely amazing when you consider how much gay men like music. We love to dance, sing etc. Yet when we’re dancing, we’re usually dancing to songs sung by women who claim to be bisexual for reasons of propping up straight male fantasy!! LOL. We’ve become dysfunctional.

    Why on earth are we dancing to songs sung by half-naked, “bisexual” women?

  • mikeandrewsdantescove

    I was so disappointed in this decision. Adam Lambert had the better vocal range.

    Dante’s Cove Over The Lair (Here TV)

  • dgz


    and vibrato. and he sang out of the front of his face.

  • Prof. O. G. Whataschnozell

    @jason: Didn’t Elton John do it? “I’m still standing” was a hit and so was Don’t go breaking my heart”.

    Both came out after he did.

  • Chris_Yes that one

    Girls, Ms Adam will be fine. At least at this point. He doesn’t have to have the world breathing down his back.

    Just the queens!

  • alan brickman

    Adam`s denials are shameful and delusional….no wonder Kris won….I wonder what gay teen who is about to kill himself is doing so because of adam`s harmful statements….

  • The_FNG

    @alan brickman: Jeez Alan, that’s a cheap shot.

    Nowhere in the entire interview did Adam say anything that could in the slightest way be deemed “harmful”.

    They were harmless non-denials.

  • hephaestion

    The media know that when a person evades answering the “Are you gay?” question, that person is gay. Period.

    No straight boy ever evaded answering that question, not even the emo-type heteros.

  • hephaestion

    @pz: No offense taken! I love what you said! God bless you!

  • pz

    @hephaestion: That’s really unfair. Despite it being noble and helpful for public figures to come out, they are still, underneath, just people, public or not. I have several friends who aren’t particularly excited about the “folks back home” finding out–some or all of their families, some people they went through school with, etc.

    Despite the slowly growing acceptance of the LBGT culture, no one should be forced to “admit” to anything. It’s no one’s business.

    And if we’re being honest, whether we are LBGT or heterosexual, homophobes or not, our view of someone changes when we learn the details of their sex lives, their likes and dislikes, etc. The “Oh, you’re gay!” or the “Oh, you’re straight!” discoveries aren’t excluded from this. And just because we still love the person, it doesn’t mean we haven’t gone through a sort of mental recategorization process and in some small way changed our views of that person, even if the changes were neutral.

    From my experience, most people just want to leave their relationships with family and old friends as uncomplicated and unchanged as possible.

  • pz

    @hephaestion: Oh, and thanks for the kind words.

  • jason

    I said AMERICAN pop music male, not BRITISH. Where’s the American one?

  • dgz

    @jason: there aren’t any. americans only like lesbians.

  • BradSA


    There could have been some but we’re too busy bashing them and buying Madonna and Cher instead.

  • AlwaysGay

    As of May 21, 2009 Adam has 10 songs, 16 albums and 10 music videos on iTunes respective charts. Adam has more albums on the iTunes chart than any other person in history.

    Top 100 Songs: #4 Mad World, #16 A Change Is Gonna Come, #36 One, #40 Cryin’, #45 Slow Ride, #64 The Tracks of My Tears, #68 Ring of Fire, #77 Whole Lotta Love, #89 Black or White, #98 Born to Be Wild

    Top 100 Albums: #1 Mad World, #2 No Boundaries, #3 A Change Is Gonna Come, #15 Cryin’, #16 One, #19 Mad World, #23 Slow Ride, #26 Favorite Performance, #30 The Tracks of My Tears, #33 Ring of Fire, #41 Whole Lotta Love, #45 If I Can’t Have You, #50 Born to Be Wild, #54 Play That Funk Music, #56 Black or White, #58 Feeling Good

    Top 100 Music Videos: #6 Mad World, #8 A Change Is Gonna Come, #9 Mad World, #11 No Boundaries, #12 The Tracks of My Tears, #25 One, #30 Cryin’, #44 Play That Funk Music, #45 If I Can’t Have You, #51 Born to Be Wild


  • Prof. O. G. Whataschnozell

    @Jayson: Damn. I was going to say Boy George but he is British too. Ok.

    Rupaul? No, Supermodel did not make it that high.

    Hall and Oates? Didn’t one of them come out a few years back?

    Now I have it. Naw, not them either. The Village People were a group. Oh well. Maybe I’ll be back. I doubt it.

    Now I know. Milli……nope. They lip-sinced. That’s it. I give up. There were/are none.

  • Stamp

    This may be an odd thing to suggest, but increasingly I get the feeling that Adam ISN’T gay—not that it matters. He reminds me of a young David Bowie who played the “gay/bisexual” card in the 70s for effect only. Maybe my gaydar is broken.

  • pz

    @Stamp: Maybe he didn’t want to upset his boyfriend by coming out as straight.

  • pz


    Adam was actually even better on those rankings some time back, but as of this moment in time, Adam has the top 3 songs in the “pop” category, along with songs 7 through 10.

    4 through 6 are held by some Kris Allen guy I never heard of.

    But I’d say that 7 out of 10 ain’t bad.

  • Jessica

    @AustinAbomination: Nothing is wrong with calling a spade a spade after the spade has called himself a spade if you get what I’m saying, If Adam is gay he’s sexy as hell and I love him but I won’t call him gay or try and push him to admit he’s gay untill he’s ready, And why does Gay automatically come to mind with people we have Bi-Sexual,Trasvesaties Transgender, MetroSexual all these other types of sexuality that are out there but everyone jumps to gay You have got to be fucking kidding me.

    Idol fans learned nothing with Clay Aiken and all his fans that keep defending him are going to ruin his career just like they did Clays with the HE”S NOT GAY STOP SAYING THAT> If you love you love Adam Great if you don’t that’s your choice just shut the hell up about his sexuality and talk about something else for a change

    Love Adam for who he is not who he fucks

  • Suraia

    I really hate the fact that everyone keeps saying adam is gay because he’s not. The pictures don’t even look like him. Plus he has never come out and said it. I think that this whole thing is stupid. It’s no one’s buisness anyway. How would you like it if people were all over the internet bl;oging about you and telling people that you’re gay when you’re not. Or posting pictures that aren’t you or pictures that are photoshoped. it’s no that hard to chang a picture of him kissing a girl and put a boy instead. You can learn how to do that in high school in Newspaper or yearbook class. I just think that everyone needs to back off and mind their own buisness. think what you want, but don’t put false accusations on someone you don’t even know based on what you think or something you read on the internet or even in a tabloid. It’s not right. And he did deserve to win. I think he got the better deal though beacause now he’s not stuck doing what american idol wants him to do.

  • Suraia

    i’d also like to poin out that kris grew up in the south and goes to a church in the south where everyone says it’s bad to be gay and he had no problem being adam’s room mate. plus they were great friends. i think danny acted more gay than adam anyway. he kept wearing bright girly colors and the idols said that he was the bathroom hog. no that being the bathroom hog helped him cuz he’s still ugly but seriously. adam didn’t wear pink or purple like danny did.

  • Alexa

    @Suraia: You can’t be for real, surely? You have got to be a troll, or maybe twelve years old. Good lord, child, get a grip, the man is gay. The photos originally came from his own website, they are not photoshopped or of someone else. And Kris appears to be a great example of non-judgmental and open minded Christians. Many gay people ARE Christian (hello, Clay Aiken). Oh, and saying someone is gay is not accusing them of anything. You have a lot of growing up to do.

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