Sports Media LGBT+ in 2020

Whether you’re a first-time visitor to our website, or just checking back in – thanks for stopping by. Read on to learn about what we can offer you, our achievements to date, and more…

Click here to go directly to our Calendar!

Who we are…

  • A network group for LGBT+ people and allies across sport, with a focus on sharing empowering stories through the power of journalism and media
  • An advocacy group that fights for LGBT+ inclusion in sport, the sports media industry and other relevant sectors
  • A consultancy consisting of experienced sports media professionals who advise on communications and media strategy, and who can help achieve fair and accurate coverage for LGBT+ people in sport
The ‘Out, And The Olympics’ panel session at our #AuthenticMe event in October 2019

What we do…

  • Assist in providing platforms for LGBT+ people and allies in both sport and sports media to reach new audiences and connect with the wider community, through media coverage, events, chat groups and social media: Follow on Twitter | Like on Facebook | Follow on Instagram
  • Encourage discussion around LGBT+ visibility and representation in sport through our #AuthenticMe initiative, which invites athletes, coaches, administrators, and others to share their experiences of being truly authentic and how this affects their performance
  • Deliver tailored resources and workshops on communicating LGBT+ inclusion in sport, to assist fellow professionals, students, and those in other media, comms and PR roles in navigating language, tone, presentation etc

What we’ve achieved…

  • Built a network – a social media audience of 5000+; a mailing list of 500+; a core group of 40+ working in sports media, comms, PR, LGBT+ inclusion and associated roles; partnered with a wide range of industry bodies, groups and organisations who share our values

New visitor? Connect with us here, or email info@sportsmedialgbt.com

  • Generated positive media coverage for individuals and organisations on major platforms such as Sky Sports and BBC Sport, and on publications at a national and regional level
  • Hosted #Authentic Me events at Twitter UK in London (2019) and BBC Sport in Manchester (2018), supported by major industry bodies, featuring panels of speakers including Olympic athletes, broadcasters, grassroots heroes and other personalities – all LGBT+ people and allies in sport – discussing their experiences to help empower others
Sports Media LGBT+ was founded in November 2017

Recent examples of our work…

Support for activities to mark Justin Fashanu’s induction into the National Football Museum’s Hall of Fame, and the 40th anniversary of his Goal of the Season for Norwich against Liverpool…

Read: ‘Norwich fans mark Fashanu wondergoal anniversary’ (Sky Sports, 15 February 2020)

Media coverage for the first Pride Game in professional rugby union, at Harlequins in the Gallagher Premiership…

Read: ‘Harlequins make history with Pride Game’ (Sky Sports, 16 February 2020)

Promoting the Elite League’s Pride Weekend in ice hockey, by sharing the story of Jay Forster, a goaltender who’s trans…

Read: Elite League’s Pride Weekend means so much to me’ (Sky Sports, 22 January 2020)

Helping Living Sport, the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough charity for sport and physical activity, access regional media coverage for their ‘Play With Pride’ initiative

Read: ‘The inspiring Cambs group tackling LGBTQ+ exclusion from sport’ (Debbie Luxon for Cambridge News, 7 January 2020)

Connecting Let’s Get Racing – an inclusion-focused horse racing syndicate – with network member Zoe Vicarage, the head of digital at Owner Breeder who produced a feature article on the project…

Read: ‘Broadening racing’s appeal’ (Zoe Vicarage for Owner Breeder, 19 December 2019)

Sky Sports and Rainbow Laces

Sports Media LGBT+’s founder and network lead, Jon Holmes, is the Senior Home Page Editor at Sky Sports, where he helps to co-ordinate the media company’s support for Stonewall’s award-winning Rainbow Laces campaign which seeks to make sport more LGBT+-inclusive and welcoming for all. See Sky Sports’ Rainbow Laces content here.

Through his journalism, Jon provides opportunities for LGBT+ people and allies in sport to collaborate with him on content creation and in many instances, to inspire and empower others by sharing their stories with a large audience. Recent examples include:

‘So many Asian kids don’t see themselves in sport’ – interview with Stonewall Sport Champion Amazin LeThi and grassroots athletes from the Out For Sport family of clubs to mark LGBT History Month (February 2020)

Acceptance and abuse: Maxine Blythin’s story’ – the Kent Women cricketer’s first in-depth interview, which accompanied a TV interview with Sportswomen on Sky Sports News (November 2019)

‘Why Ogogo’s calling out homophobia’ – Olympic boxer Anthony Ogogo on officiating at his sister’s wedding, calling out negativity on social media, and speaking publicly as an LGBT+ ally (September 2019)

‘Gay in the NFL: ‘Football was my cover” – Ryan O’Callaghan, the former New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs lineman, discusses his powerful memoir ‘My Life On The Line’ and his Foundation plans (September 2019)

Jon worked exclusively with the football referee Ryan Atkin on his ‘coming out’ story in August 2017, and has interviewed many other LGBT+ people in sport including Olympic gold medalists Kate and Helen Richardson-Walsh, international swimmer Michael Gunning, darts referee Huw Ware, and many amateur athletes. See his full portfolio here – you can contact Jon directly, and in confidence, at jon@sportsmedialgbt.com.

More 2019 highlights…

A few extra ‘best bits’ from the last 12 months or so…

We helped launch and establish LGBT+ motorsport news Racing Pride UK; promoted Goaldiggers FC’s ‘The Festival of Football’; delivered a workshop on ‘Communicating LGBT+ Inclusion’ at the Pride Sports Summit in Manchester, and helped out at the Pride Youth Games; discussed ‘The Gay Footballer’ and how the media needs to be more responsible in its reporting; contributed to new academic text ‘Sports Journalism: The State of Play’; hosted panel discussions and conversations at Football v Homophobia’s 20th anniversary event, Outsports Pride in Los Angeles, and the annual Hill & Knowlton creativity symposium at the British Library. And that’s not all we did…

Reach out and talk to us about your plans and projects for 2020!

Sports Media LGBT+’s objectives for 2020

  • February: Release ‘Rainbow Ready’ – our first published resources, backed by leading sports inclusion organisations. A media strategy and guidelines document on communicating LGBT+ inclusion in sport, designed to help anyone working in a media, comms or PR capacity – we did it! Check out the resources here!
  • February: Host a quiz night in central London on a midweek evening to mark LGBT History Month in the UK, raising money for one or more LGBT+ specific charities – we did it! Over £500 raised for Diversity Role Models
  • June: Attend and contribute to the Outsports Pride summit, being held in Philadelphia (11-14 June)
  • October: Host our third #AuthenticMe event, in the week beginning Mon 5
  • Continue to support inclusion initiatives and campaigns such as Football v Homophobia and Rainbow Laces, and related events, and build upon our partnerships with organisations such as the Sports Journalists’ Association, Women In Football, Pride In Football, Racing Pride UK etc
  • Grow our connections across the sports, media and LGBT+ spaces
  • More regular meet-ups and get-togethers
  • Increased website content – you’re welcome to contribute! Your blog, article, video content etc could be published on our Google News featured site and reach a wider audience. Start a conversation…
  • More frequent mailing list updates – keeping our network informed about events and activities

Dates for the diary in 2020

Want to see your event listed here? Interested in attending an event and keen to make a connection? Whatever your query, give us a shout!

FebruaryLGBT History Month (UK) – Theme ‘Poetry, Prose and Plays’

FebFootball v Homophobia Month of Action

Fri 21 to Sun 23 FebNational Student Pride (University of Westminster)

Fri 21 Feb to Sun 8 March – Women’s T20 World Cup (Australia)

Sat 22 Feb (3pm ) – Charlton vs Luton – Addicks’ annual Football v Homophobia awareness match (The Valley)

Sat 22 Feb (7pm) – Stonewall FC’s Football v Homophobia fundraiser (The Curtain, Shoreditch, London)

Mon 24 FebBritish Sports Journalism Awards (Park Plaza Westminster, London)

Thu 27 Feb (6.30pm) – ‘Football for All: Conversations around LGBTQ+ inclusion & women’s football’ – Festival of Football event (Shoreditch)

Thu 27 Feb (6pm) – Empower Your PRIDE – Villa & Proud panel discussion and networking evening (Snowhill, Birmingham)

Fri 6 March (1pm) – Media Raise Your Game event (Sky Sports, Osterley, west London)

Thu 19 Mar (6pm) – Pride Boxing – Courage (Clapham Grand, London)

Thu 26 Mar (7pm) – Big Fat Quiz of The Queer – Pride of Irons quiz night (London)

Tue 31 Mar – International Transgender Day of Visibility

Mon 20 to Sun 26 AprilLesbian Visibility Week

Sun 26 Apr – Lesbian Visibility Day

Sun 17 May – International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia

Sun 24 May – Pan Visibility Day

Fri 29 Mayevent in London (save the date!)

June – Pride Month

Thu 11 to Sun 14 JuneOutsports Pride (Philadelphia)

Fri 12 June to Sun 12 July – Euro 2020

Sat 27 JunePride in London

Sun 28 JuneUK Black Pride

Fri 3 to Sun 5 JulyGFSN Summer Tournament (Glasgow)

Tue 14 July – International Non-Binary People’s Day

Fri 24 July to Sun 9 August – Olympic Games (Tokyo)

Wed 5 to Sun 9 AugEuroGames (Dusseldorf)

Wed 12 to Sun 16 AugBingham Cup (Ottawa)

Mon 31 Aug – RVT Sports Day (London)

Tue 25 to Sun 6 September – Paralympic Games (Tokyo)

Wed 23 SepCelebrate Bisexuality Day

OctoberBlack History Month (UK); LGBT History Month (USA)

Sat 10 OctWorld Mental Health Day

Sun 11 OctComing Out Day

Wed 21 OctInternational Pronouns Day

Mon 26 OctIntersex Awareness Day

Fri 20 NovemberTransgender Day of Remembrance

Tue 1 DecemberWorld AIDS Day

1 thought on “Sports Media LGBT+ in 2020

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *