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Underlying Rights

Ellen Page Credits Dan Savage with Helping Her Finally Come Out

Only in Hollywood. Before Ellen Page revealed her true self, spectacularly this past Valentine’s Day in Las Vegas, she would have conversations about such a move with her publicist. And each time, per Seth Abramovitch‘s Hollywood Reporter cover story, publicist Kelly Bush, a lesbian mom to two daughters, would argue the time was not yet right.

And if Page hadn’t caught a certain episode of a long-running TV talk show in her native land, she and Bush might still be having that same conversation. From the THR article:

Although no single incident led to her decision, Page does reference a Dan Savage appearance in July 2013 on the Canadian talk show George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight as having had a profound effect on her. Savage, the in-your-face columnist behind the “It Gets Better” campaign, laid out his argument for coming out in very plain terms.

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ESPN Analyst Details How He Was Racially Profiled… in His Own Driveway

DougGlanvillePicPowerful stuff today, via The Atlantic, from former MLB player and current ESPN baseball analyst Doug Glanville. The athlete-turned-author-turned-broadcaster details a very unpleasant recent encounter with a wayward patrol cop, who assumed the black man shoveling snow in front of a certain West Hartford residence must be hustling for bucks.

From Glanville’s piece:

After getting legal advice from my neighbor and my wife, I ruled out any immediate action. In fact, I was hesitant to impulsively share my story with anyone I knew, let alone my media friends at ESPN or the New York Times. I hoped to have a meaningful, productive conversation with West Hartford leaders – something that might be hard to achieve if my story turned into a high-profile controversy. Instead, I asked my neighbor to help me arrange a meeting with the West Hartford officials. I arrived at Town Hall, I was flanked by my neighbor and my wife. They came as supporters, but it helped that they were also attorneys…

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Author Chuck Klosterman Backs Up R-Word Apology with $25,000 Charity Donation

The website disabilityscoop.com was co-founded in 2008 by journalist Michelle Diament and photographer Shaun Heasley. Today, Heasley has a heartwarming item about the recent actions of author and New York Times columnist Chuck Klosterman.

Picking up on some local TV coverage late last week in Portland, Maine by Tim Goff, Heasley recaps what happened when Kari Wagner-Peck – the mother of a seven-year-old with Down syndrome – wrote about the author-journalist’s use in past work like this 2008 New York magazine article of the words “retards,” “retard” and “non-retarded:”

Wagner-Peck told WCSH-TV that days later she was overwhelmed when Klosterman not only replied, but owned up.

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GLAAD Pitches CBS on Transgender Issues

PinkNewsLogoScott Roberts, editor of the LGBT-focused UK website Pink News, was recently in New York. During his visit, he sat down with GLAAD’s head of public communications Rich Ferraro and director of news and faith initiatives Ross Murray for a very enlightening conversation.

Many topics were covered. Including GLAAD’s efforts in Hollywood to make the TV networks and studios more receptive to the inclusion of transgender characters and storylines:

“We recently met with the president of CBS Entertainment to talk about the transgender community, which is nearly invisible on CBS, and on many of the other networks,” said Ferraro. “When trans people are included they often the victims of crimes or the butt of jokes and anti-transgender slurs.”

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San Diego Photojournalist Claims He Was Roughed Up at U.S.-Mexico Border

San Diego Patch regional editor Ken Stone has an alarming update about the fortunes of 49-year-old Ramona freelancer J.C. Playford. After recently reporting about the reinstatement, after three years, of Playford’s San Diego Police press pass, Stone has details of a Tuesday altercation at the U.S.-Mexico border involving the photojournalist, an off-duty SDP officer and Department of Homeland Security official.

From Stone’s report:

Playford says he filed a formal complaint Wednesday against a San Diego police officer over what he calls an “assault and battery” incident on the [San Ysidro] pedestrian bridge.

Playford posted three YouTube videos depicting his exchanges with authorities on and near the bridge, where he says he had stopped to film a K-9 drug search of a car passing into the United States. “This is what a dictatorship looks like,” Playford says in one video during his time talking to police.

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Howard Bragman Chats with Magic Johnson’s Outed Son

On the latest edition of the YouTube interview show GWISSUES, Earvin Johnson III (a.k.a. EJ) says that the person shown on TMZ TV walking with him hand-in-hand on the Sunset Strip was not actually a boyfriend but rather his best friend. Nevertheless, the April 2 report led to Magic’s son being outed in the media and EJ’s dad doing a subsequent interview with Harvey Levin.

Johnson tells host Howard Bragman that in addition to his current focus on an event planning and hospitality degree at NYU, he has a personal passion for media and journalism. One day, he tells the former uber-publicist, he hopes to host his own TV talk show.

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Associated Press Removes the Term ‘Illegal Immigrants’ from its Lexicon–Draws Inevitable Conservative Blowback

The term “illegal immigrant” will no longer be used in Associated Press stories–nor will it appear in its much-copied style book. In a blog post yesterday, AP Executive Editor Kathleen Carroll wrote that “‘illegal’ should describe only an action, such as living in or immigrating to a country illegally.”

The decision, of course, has drawn conservative outrage.

Do we even have to mention what network has been up in arms all day today?

#NewAPStyle is also now a thing on Twitter.

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Angered by Proposed Health Plan, San Francisco Chronicle Staffers Staging Social Media Protest

It’s been a herky-jerky month for Hearst Corporation. It began with the theatrical roll out of a very good 125th anniversary documentary; continued with a salacious sex scandal involving Scott Sassa; and is now ending with an angry Twitter and Facebook protest by employees at a flagship publication.

Reporters, editors and other workers at the San Francisco Chronicle are using the twin social media powerhouses to register their displeasure at Hearst’s desire to shift to a new health insurance plan that they say will dramatically increase costs. For some, this means changing their Twitter avatar to a red box; for others, it’s a matter of re-tweeting. And here’s how the open letter on Facebook begins:

We, the employees of the San Francisco Chronicle, have had enough.

We love this newspaper, and we’ve worked hard since the layoffs of 2009 to help keep it afloat. We’ve done everything Hearst demanded: sacrificing pay raises, giving up seniority, losing vacation time and holidays, even working through what used to be our paid lunch hour.

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How Occupy LA Set Paulina González on the Path to ‘Authentic Journalism’

There’s a fantastic essay today on narconews.com by Paulina González, a Southeast Los Angeles native who by means of a very unusual trajectory, now finds herself teaching at the Authentic School of Journalism. The non-profit organization is based out of Easthampton, MA, but Gonzalez is set for a second professorial stint next month in Mexico City.

After dropping out of a hoity-toity Liberal Arts college, González wound up getting involved in union organizing. Then, last year, a three-day Authentic School workshop in New York City rekindled her interest in writing and sparked a visit to Occupy LA. She writes:

I felt the familiar anger boiling up in me after one night of the General Assembly. Yes, I had and have anger at the “Wall Street” that had fired my father many years before, but now there was also anger at a movement that threatened to exclude people like my father. I put pen to paper, and wrote. My anger, frustration, hope and 17 years of organizing training spilled onto the page. It felt good.

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It’s Now KPCC-SAG-AFTRA

In this afternoon’s KPCC item about some very exciting in-house business, reporter and union organizing committee member Adolfo Guzman-Lopez was quoted as follows:

“The vote count is clear. We look forward to sitting down with management to collectively bargain for the content employees at KPCC.”

He’s referring to a January 11 supervised tally of KPCC employees in favor of SAG-AFTRA unionization. But is a 35-to-26 vote count really that “clear?” FishbowlLA is somewhat surprised that nearly 40% of the 69 employees who will be covered by the new contract voted against it. (A union rep tells us that 69 ballots were cast, but eight challenged, hence the final vote total of 61.)

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