This year, GLAAD has partnered with Procter & Gamble to release the “LGBTQ Inclusion in Advertising and Media” study, which measures the attitudes of non-LGBTQ Americans to exposure of LGBTQ people and images in the media. For the first time ever, GLAAD has collected data to quantify how LGBTQ representation in TV, film, and advertising can lead to greater acceptance, comfortability, and understanding of the LGBTQ community.
The findings from the “LGBTQ Inclusion in Advertising and Media” study showcase four main trends:
- Most non-LGBTQ people personally know at least one LGBTQ person in their own lives at higher levels than ever before.
- Non-LGBTQ people are very comfortable with LGBTQ people appearing in the films, movies, and ads they consume, opening the door for more opportunities in the future.
- Non-LGBTQ people who are exposed to LGBTQ media images are more likely to experience increasing levels of acceptance and comfortability towards LGBTQ people.
- Companies benefit from including LGBTQ people in the advertisements, with the vast majority of non-LGBTQ consumers looking favorably upon companies that do so.
With the data signaling greater comfortability and openness with LGBTQ images in media, companies and brands have the responsibility to ensure that they include LGBTQ people in their ads, with an emphasis on accurate, positive, impactful representation. In a time when LGBTQ people continue to face unprecedented discrimination and violence, entertainment and media remain driving forces for positive culture change by helping to change hearts and minds through diverse and inclusive representation of LGBTQ people.