Italian LGBT advocates to host first-ever Diversity Media Awards

Italian LGBT advocates will soon debut an Italian version of the GLAAD Media Awards, following consultation and guidance from GLAAD. Diversity, an Italian association working to reduce prejudice and discrimination, will host its first Diversity Media Awards this May. The Diversity Media Awards, modeled after the GLAAD Media Awards but not an official GLAAD event, will recognize fair, accurate, and diverse representations of LGBT people in both Italian and international media outlets including TV, radio, and cinema. 

"For nearly 30 years, the GLAAD Media Awards have raised the bar for fair, accurate, and diverse representations of LGBT people in entertainment and news media," said GLAAD CEO & President Sarah Kate Ellis. "GLAAD is pleased to share what we have learned with advocates working in countries across the world to accelerate acceptance and understanding of LGBT people everywhere. The Diversity Media Awards will help boost inclusive representation and advance acceptance for LGBT Italians."

Diversity's Founder and President, Francesca Vecchioni, spoke on the importance of Diversity's research and the Diversity Media Awards , stating, "the whole world of communication has a great responsibility, because it enters directly into the homes of Italians and influences the collective imagination…Talking about these issues does not concern only LGBT people, but it is a work on discrimination in general, a concrete way of questioning other forms of discrimination: it thus serves the welfare and development of the entire society." Vecchioni reminds us that rewarding accurate and respectful representations of LGBT people in the media does not serve only the LGBT community, but a society's move towards acceptance and equality as a whole.

While GLAAD consulted with the organizers of the Diversity Media Awards and provided the best practices from the GLAAD Media Awards, Diversity brings a particularly academic lens to issues around sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, as well as different forms of family and their representations in the media. Nominees are selected based on an annual report that features both quantitative research that surveys Italian media (conducted by the Pavia Media Watch), and qualitative interdisciplinary research done by 42 scholars across 11 Italian universities. Diversity's group of scholars analyze and evaluate the media content based on principles that reflect the GLAAD Media Awards criteria for evaluation, including the degree to which the nominee is respectful of and fair to LGBT people, and its effectiveness and impact on audiences.

In this first year of the Diversity Media Awards, Diversity aspires to meet not only similar standards of media evaluation, but also standards of respect set by the GLAAD Media Awards event itself. Voting for DMA nominees opens to the public on April 1, 2016, and the event will be held in Italy this May. Meanwhile, the GLAAD Media Awards will be held in LA on April 2, 2016 and in NY on May 14, 2016.

Check out the DMA 2016 trailer: 

Learn more about Diversity's mission and what GLAAD's doing to accelerate acceptance.