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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
JANUARY 2, 2001
5:19 PM
CONTACT: Mississippi Gay Lobby 
Jody Renaldo, 1-888-843-5432
Mississippi Gay Lobby Announces TV Ad Campaign, A First In Mississippi
 
JACKSON, MS - January 2 - Mississippi Gay Lobby (MGL) will begin running television advertisements through cable advertising firms throughout the state. The test run will begin in the Jackson metro area through Lovecomm Advertising Sales. Customers who have Time-Warner Cable or Susquehanna (SusCom) Cable, which equals to approximately 95,200 cable subscribers, will be able to view the advertisements on MTV and VH-1. After the test run, and providing expected results are met, a full Lovecomm systemwide run, including the addition of CNN and Lifetime to the channels the advertisement will be run on, will commence in the rest of the state for which Lovecomm handles cable advertising. This full Lovecomm systemwide run will ultimately reach into 129,580 homes that subscribe to cable television. In addition to the full Lovecomm systemwide run, other cable advertising systems in the state will be contacted and providing cooperation and acceptable negotiations, the advertisements will run on them as well, giving full statewide coverage and increasing the number of homes that the MGL advertisement will reach, to approximately 650,000.

"Indeed, this is a first in Mississippi. For the Mississippi gay community and for a Mississippi gay equality organization, to be promoted on television within the state, is extraordinary progress. Before we even imagined that this could possibly happen, and knowing the hostile environment against homosexuals in Mississippi, we first asked, out of respect, all of the companies involved in this undertaking as to whether or not they had a problem with us running advertisements. Lovecomm, the firm that is producing the spot and is responsible for its actual placement into rotation, as well as the cable companies who will be airing the spot, Time- Warner and Susquehanna, all said they saw no problem. We of course applaud these companies for being open to progress and being a part of breaking down the homophobic barriers in Mississippi.," said MGL Chairman Jody Renaldo. "It has been a pleasure working with Lovecomm, to make this happen. The initial meeting was a rather productive and fun one, as myself and Lovecomm executives not only discussed the actual television spot, but the gay community as well, from "gay slang" to the current state of affairs in the gay community. Lovecomm executives have been very upfront with us about any issues that came about. There was an instance where the ideas for the spot were given to a Lovecomm employee so that he could put together the script for the spot. He refused to work on our project because of us being a gay organization. We respect that and have no problems with it. Not everyone is for us, and then again, not everyone is against us. If everyone was for us, we wouldn't need to exist."

Renaldo said that the intent of the television advertisements, is to begin much needed education about the gay community, for Mississippi residents. Renaldo also said the advertisements will promote the fact that an actual active gay equality organization does exist in Mississippi and will signify to the gay community in the state, that there is someone out there working for their equality. "Almost a year into this organization, we have found that alot of gay and gay friendly Mississippians don't even know we exist. This will get the word out, and in turn, our membership and lobbying power will go up. 2001 will be an exciting year for us and we hope that for whatever reasons, our community does not grow complacent and stale. We have some serious battles ahead what with the outcome of the recent elections. The problem isn't Washington, nor Hollywood. The problem is a weak, divided, complacent GLBT community and it is time for us to come together and make some noise and turn some heads. The days of being who we are as long as noone else knows or sees it, should come to an end and we feel this is a great step in making that happen."

Renaldo went on to say that the GLBT and GLBT friendly community of Mississippi, is encouraged to get involved in this project. "This is not a cheap undertaking at all. It's not as expensive as we thought it would be, but by no means is it cheap. What we would like to see happen, is the spots run in our initial proposal which is 132 spots a month, 20 of those 132 spots to run at our discretion such as in cases of special programs that come on at particular times throughout the year on these channels. For us to do this, it will cost $3040.00 each month. We could indeed use any underwriting, donations, grants, and memberships to fund this project. We, of course, encourage the Mississippi GLBT and GLBT friendly community to stand up and help us make this happen. The advertisement will be available soon on our web site, for anyone to view."

Mississippi Gay Lobby was formed in March of 2000. MGL exists to educate gay Mississippians about their community, its history, and about issues of relevance to them. The organization also exists to educate the general public about the Mississippi gay community. Beyond this, Mississippi Gay Lobby works to advance the cause of full equality and civil rights for all members of the Mississippi gay community. MGL operates a web site at http://www.msgaylobby.org

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