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USA: Social Networks Helped Win Marriage Equality Votes

Monday, December 3rd, 2012

It was no secret during past decades of ballot-box pummeling that social connections help determine where people stand on LGBT rights, say the organizers behind November 6’s same-sex marriage wins in Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, and Washington. They knew the public-opinion polls. Simply having a gay family member, friend, or colleague doubles the likelihood of support.

“The meta narrative,” says Michael Cole-Schwartz, director of media efforts for the Human Rights Campaign, “is that we win these fights because Americans know that LGBT people are their neighbors, their cousins, their aunts and uncles, the people they sit next to in church, and the people they shop with at the grocery store.” More than that, experience told them that personal conversations on or around the significance of marriage were especially persuasive. And that stayed true when those talks happened between straight people, like the conversations with his daughters Sasha and Malia that were said to change President Obama’s thinking.

But there was still a conundrum, and it had to do with amplification, explains Cole-Schwartz: “How do we get these conversations that happen naturally to happen more often?” It’s a political challenge not limited to the question of LGBT issues. In their groundbreaking 2004 book Get Out the Vote!, Yale political scientists Alan S. Gerber and Donald P. Green wrote that “the more personal the interaction, the harder it is to reproduce on a large scale.”

Authored By Nancy Scola – See the Full Story at The Atlantic

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United Kingdom: Man Demoted After Anti Marriage Equality Facebook Post Wins Lawsuit

Friday, November 16th, 2012

A British man whose Facebook comments against same-sex marriage led to a demotion and 40 percent pay cut won a breach-of-contract lawsuit against his employer.

An online comment by Adrian Smith, a housing manager who says he opposes gay marriage for religious reasons, didn’t amount to misconduct under his employment contract with Trafford Housing Trust, Judge Michael Briggs said today in London.

“The judge exonerated me,” Smith, 55, said in an e-mailed statement. “Britain is a free country where people have freedom of speech, and I am pleased that the judge’s ruling underlines that important principle.”

Authored By Erik Larson – See the Full Story at Bloomberg

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Actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson Tells Marriage Equality Foes to De-Friend Him

Monday, November 5th, 2012

Actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson is calling on fans who don’t share his support for gay marriage to unfriend him on Facebook.

The 37-year-old Ferguson, who is best know for playing Mitchell Pritchett on the ABC sitcom Modern Family, in September announced his engagement to boyfriend Justin Mikita, a lawyer.

Proceeds from sales of the couple’s custom bow ties at Tie the Knot benefit organizations seeking to expand marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples.

See the Full Story at On Top Magazine

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Washington, USA: New Facebook Tool Launched for Marriage Equality Fight

Thursday, November 1st, 2012

From Washington United for Marriage:

New Facebook Tool Launched for Marriage Equality Fight in Washington StateIn what is believed to be the first application of its kind employed in the state, and one of the first nationwide, Washington United for Marriage (WUM) today launched a unique and powerful GOTV tool designed to engage family and friends to make sure all supporters of Referendum 74 cast their ballot by Nov. 6. The tool’s potential power is significant because when you include the friends of WUM’s Facebook fans, the campaign now has a reach that extends to every Facebook user eligible to vote in Washington.

Leveraging their Facebook network, R-74 supporters can now see who among their family and friends has voted and who has not. By using the “Get Out Your Friends” connection tool, linked here approve74.org/friendvote, supporters can cross-reference their Facebook networks with the state’s publicly available voter database.
That’s Step One. The second tool, allows R74 supporters to then send a message to their friends expressing their approval of the freedom to marry and activate their network to vote. WUM has provided a sample message which supporters can simply copy and paste or modify.

“This is a 21st century voter tool that we believe our supporters will love and implement,” said WUM campaign manager Zach Silk. “We now have more than 53,000 fans on Facebook. By empowering them to reach out to their family, friends and colleagues to vote by Nov. 6th, we’ve turned each of them into the modern-day equivalent of a door-knocker. The only difference is they can now reach hundreds of supporters and never leave the comfort of their living room or kitchen table.”

The two powerful tools are now part of the arsenal WUM has been utilizing called “Marriage Heros”. Once supporters vote, and energize their network to do the same, WUM has created model templates to allow supporters to showcase their vote to Approve R74. Supporters can import their own picture and customize it with a choice of of Approve R74 graphics. They can then upload them for use as their Facebook profile picture or on other online services like Twitter, GitHub, Gravatar, Instagram and others. They can also create their own customized profile photo by going to approve74.org/ivoted. A full array of user tools can be accessed at hero74.org.

Washington, USA: More Proof That “Preserve Marriage” Buying Facebook Likes

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

More Proof That "Preserve Marriage Washington" is Buying Facebook LikesYou will recall that I caught Preserve Marriage Washington buying fake Facebook page “likes” from Bangkok, Thailand. As it turns out, that wasn’t the half of it.

In their apparent effort to create a falsely enlarged image of their grassroots base, Preserve Marriage Washington, the campaign opposing Referendum 74 and Washington state’s freedom to marry law, bought fake likes in Germany, Philippines, Thailand and Lithuania as well as New York City, according to research conducted by Washington United for Marriage.

Between mid-August and last week, PMW added 16,000 “likes”, all generated in a few, multi-day bursts, which coincided with the days the site was most popular in the Germany, Philippines, Thailand and Lithuania. Before PMW’s globetrotting began, their Facebook page had a sleepy 2,500 likes.

Authored By Laurel Ramseyer – See the Full Story at Pam’s House Blend

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United Kingdom: Man Sues Employer for Demotion After Criticism of Marriage Equality

Thursday, October 18th, 2012

A Christian man in Manchester who was demoted after questioning the merits of religious same-sex marriages on his private Facebook page has taken his employer to court.

Adrian Smith lost his managerial position and had his salary cut by 40% by Trafford Housing Trust after he commented in an online discussion about gay couples marrying in church by saying it was “an equality too far” in February 2011.

According to the Huffington Post, when asked by a colleague on what he meant, Mr Smith posted: “I don’t understand why people who have no faith and don’t believe in Christ would want to get hitched in church.

Authored By Scott Roberts – See the Full Story at Pink News

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Russia: Backlash Over New Facebook Marriage Equality Icons

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

Russia: Backlash Over New Facebook Marriage Equality IconsFacebook’s recently-launched relationships status icons identifying gay and lesbian users who are married have prompted a backlash against the social networking site in Russia.

Facebook added the new married icons to Timeline, Facebook’s alternative profile which allows users to highlight photos, posts and life events chronologically.

One icon includes two brides, the other two grooms.

See the Full Story at On Top Magazine

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Facebook Launches Gay-Married Icons

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

Facebook Marriage Equality IconsFacebook has rolled out a new feature providing additional recognition for its users who are married to a person of the same sex.

Now these users who have indicated on their Facebook timeline that they are married will be recognized by new same-sex marriage icons, rather than the marriage icon used for straight married couples.

Full Story from Joe.My.God

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New York, USA: Facebook Co-Founder Marries Partner

Sunday, July 1st, 2012

New York, USA: Facebook Co-Founder Marries PartnerChris Hughes, a co-founder of Facebook, and Sean Eldridge married Saturday in New York.

According to The New York Times, Hughes and Eldridge were married at their home in Garrison. The ceremony was officiated by William J. Corbett, a retired village justice of Floral Park.

The 28-year-old Hughes founded Facebook with Mark Zuckerberg, Dustin Moskovitz and Eduardo Saverin. He is the publisher and editor in chief of The New Republic magazine.

Full Story from On Top Magazine

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Secret Facebook Group Supplying Anti-Gay Documents for Hate Groups

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

A Facebook group called Truth4Time whose members include “a Fox News pundit, former employees of Concerned Women for America and The Family Research Council, a prominent member of the American Family Association, long term anti-gay activists, prominent members of the so-called ‘ex-gay’ movement, a member of a state legislature, college professors from right-wing universities, members of a prominent anti-gay marriage equality group, and various religious right talking heads who us bloggers have had to refute many times in the past” is plotting ongoing cyber attacks on the LGBT community and organizes efforts to troll specific pro-gay websites, according to Alvin McEwen at Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters.

Writes McEwen:

Truth4Time is supposed to be a library of anti-gay articles, blogs, and other materials for its members to use in their fight against the supposed “gay agenda.” Apparently the group has a large lists of documents which contains anti-gay information (i.e. propaganda) that members are invited to use.

Full Story from Towleroad.com

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