Approval Of ‘That’s So Gay’ Removed From International Olympic Committee’s Social Media Moderation Policy

The International Olympic Committee updated its social media moderation policy regarding lesbians, gays, and bisexuals, linked to on its Facebook page, removing a clause that allowed use of the phrase, “That’s so gay.”

The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) reported the change in a post on its blog Thursday, saying that prior to the change, the section labeled, “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual,” read:

It is acceptable for a user to refer to his/her sexuality as gay. However, we need to be careful with potentially defamatory posts accusing someone else of being gay — these will be removed. It is acceptable for users to use the word “gay” in a light-hearted “street talk” manner, e.g. “that’s so gay” — but if used to be discriminatory it will be removed.

Following the change, the same section read:

It is acceptable for a user to refer to his/her sexuality as gay. However, we need to be careful with potentially defamatory posts accusing someone else of being gay — these will be removed. It is of course acceptable for users to use the word “gay” in a general way — but if used to be discriminatory it will be removed.

According to GLAAD, advocate Julie Price brought attention to the IOC’s previous approval of “that’s so gay” in a tweet, and the Federation of Gay Games followed with a blog post condemning the policy.

GLAAD Spokesman Wilson Cruz said in the blog post:

The IOC has a responsibility to ensure that its athletes and their fans are safe, whether in the stands in Russia or following on Facebook from home. This policy was outdated and wouldn’t be acceptable in a high school, much less on a page where millions of users interact. The IOC needs to do more to support the LGBT people around the world, and it should start by explicitly banning anti-LGBT speech on its social media channels.

Readers: Is this issue resolved, or does the IOC need to do more?

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