Today, August 9, GLAAD and the National Hispanic Media Coalition (NHMC) announced that “José Luis Sin Censura" -- which is basically Estrella TV's far worse Spanish-language version of Jerry Springer that for several years aired virulent anti-gay, anti-Latino and anti-female content -- has been permanently removed from the network's broadcast schedule. The show's removal comes after a campaign that included 18 months of sustained effort from GLAAD and NHMC.
NHMC and GLAAD were notified of this decision via a letter from the Chief Operating Officer of Liberman Broadcasting, Inc, the show's producing and distributing company:
Dear Mr. Nogales and Mr. Graddick,
This letter serves to confirm that August 8, 2012 will be the last day Liberman Broadcasting will air the television show “Jose Luis Sin Censura” on any of its stations or affiliate stations. Liberman Broadcasting is pleased to have amicably resolved this matter with the National Hispanic Media Coalition ("NHMC") and GLAAD and is glad NHMC and GLAAD will no longer discourage companies from advertising with Liberman Broadcasting. Can you please contact those clients with whom you have previously spoken and let them know that Liberman Broadcasting is no longer airing any programming that GLAAD or NHMC finds objectionable. We are confident that we can build upon this experience and work together to create positive experiences for the LGBT, Latino and Spanish-speaking communities.
Very truly yours,
Winter W. Horton
Chief Operating Officer
Liberman Broadcasting, Inc.
During the year-plus long campaign, dozens of organizations and thousands of individuals were mobilized, many via a petition at Change.org. To launch the campaign, GLAAD and NHMC filed a nearly 200-page formal complaint with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and subsequently contacted dozens of major advertisers whose ads appeared during the program. The campaign resulted in an ongoing investigation by the FCC and a number of advertisers withdrawing their support of the show, including AT&T, Time Warner Cable, and Western Dental. Click here to see a timeline of the campaign
To view video footage of the violence against LGBT people which was featured and encouraged on the show, along with photos of the delivery of the Change.org petition calling on LBI to take action visit: http://www.glaad.org/jlsc.
José Luis Sin Censura was certainly in a class of its own, as it was certainly not representative of the standard being set by other Spanish-language news and entertainment media, most of which continue to improve in presenting stories of the LGBT community that grow acceptance. On this show it was common to hear an entire studio audience chant the words “puñal” or “maricón” (“f*ggot”) at a guest or “puta” or “piruja” (“whore”) at a female guest. But the problem was never the show’s audience members or even its viewing public, but rather that the show’s producers were flagrantly exploiting and encouraging its audience (including viewers) to use anti-gay, anti-women and anti-Latino language for ratings.
For this reason, GLAAD President Herndon Graddick stated, “The company should now join so many other Spanish-language broadcasters in presenting stories that inspire and create change, not fuel a climate of intolerance and violence.” It's worth noting that that the overall number of hate murders of members of the LGBT community has increased by 11%, according to the National Coalition of Anti Violence Projects. So truly this is, as NHMC President & CEO Alex Nogales stated, "a hard-fought victory for tolerance, inclusion, and decency and it is further proof that programming that degrades or threatens the safety of entire segments of our population has no place in this country."
An overview of the year-plus long campaign by GLAAD and NHMC:
- July 2012, Western Dental pulled advertising from José Luis Sin Censura.
- On June 21, 2012, in a ;oint press conference at LBI headquarters in Burbank, CA, GLAAD and NHMC delivered a petition with over 3,800 signatures to LBI and announced a campaign to contact national advertisers.
- Between October 2011 and June 2012, GLAAD and NHMC participated in a dialogue with Rocky Delgadillo, the attorney representing LBI on this matter. GLAAD and NHMC attempted to resolve the matter despite the limited engagement from LBI. In June 2012, Mr. Delgadillo revealed that LBI would stop airing the show on owned and operated stations in late September if GLAAD and NHMC would agree cease their campaign. GLAAD and NHMC declined this offer due to the harm that the continued broadcast of the show was causing to the communities in which it aired.
- On June 17, 2011, GLAAD and NHMC met with the principals of Liberman Broadcasting, Inc.: Chair José Liberman; his son, President and CEO Lenard Liberman; and Chief Operating Officer, Winter Horton. The Libermans own EstrellaTV Network and a number of broadcast stations across the country that air EstrellaTV, including its Los Angeles-based flagship KRCA. While representatives from LBI offered an apology for anti-LGBT content that aired on the show, they did not take immediate action, had no response to other issues raised by GLAAD and NHMC concerning the use of anti-Latino slurs or misogynistic content, and offered no proposals for how to rectify this situation.
- In June 2011, national advertisers including AT&T and Time Warner Cable as well as affiliate stations in Miami, Florida and Wichita, Kansas pulled support for the program.
- In April 2011, more than 30 organizations including the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), the Southern Poverty Law Center, United Church of Christ, and the Women’s Media Center, sent a letter to the FCC, urging swift action.
- On February 28, 2011, GLAAD and NHMC filed the original FCC complaint demonstrating that KRCA (and all of the stations that air "José Luis Sin Censura") are in violation of federal law. The complaint documented over twenty episodes that aired between June 18 and December 7, 2010, which contains images and language of the nature that is never displayed or is bleeped out of pre-taped English-language programs of the same nature, including the words "pinche" ("f*cking" in English) and "culero" ("assf*cker"), anti-gay language, including epithets such as "puto," "maricón," "joto" and "puñal" (or "f*ggot"), anti-Latino slurs, such as "mojado" ("wetback"), and anti-female terms such as "piruja" and "puta" ("whore"). The program frequently features blatant nudity and female guests have been shown in violent fights. Guests and audience members are often incited to engage in verbal and physical attacks. Many episodes show the audience standing and shouting anti-gay epithets and profanity at guests.