Proof that words can really go the distance if you really believe in what you say. This is a great example of that.
Only a matter of days after Hugh Hunter went after the upcoming GayVN Awards for declining his nominations due to the thinly veiled racism and bigotry in the categories itself (Best Ethnic Scene, little diversity in the Performer of the Year category) AVN (Adult Video News) has issued a statement about a major change that will happen as a result.
The announcement, which went out this afternoon, will merge the Best Ethnic Scene category with Best Duo, meaning that everyone who is nominated for both will still be in the running to win an award.
"In response to concerns raised by members of the adult community, AVN Media Network is making a significant change to the 2018 GayVN Awards nominations. Effective immediately, the category of Best Ethnic Scene has been merged with Best Duo Scene. All nominees in both categories will be in the running for a single award."
"The team at AVN offers a heartfelt, unequivocal apology to anyone who felt that the category of Best Ethnic Scene was an attempt to slight performers of color. It truly pains us to have offended any member of our community."
"We also want to share some additional thoughts on this issue—not in any way to discount the feelings of those who protested, but rather to provide some context for the original decision to create this category."
"Earlier this year, when AVN planned to bring back the GayVN Awards after a seven-year hiatus, the first step was to come up with a list of categories in which members of the industry could pre-nominate their content. Best Duo Sex Scene and Best Group Sex Scene were two obvious choices."
"However, to involve as many companies and performers as possible by including more categories and therefore more winners, the decision was made to add categories that recognize content aimed at certain consumer groups—hence, for example, Best Fetish Scene and Best Bear Scene. Though some nominees are produced by “mainstream” gay adult companies, these categories provide a platform for smaller producers to receive more attention."
"In the same spirit, the Best Ethnic Scene category was added to recognize producers who work largely with performers of particular ethnic backgrounds. These producers cater to their own group of consumers and are a key component of the gay adult industry, and we hoped to ensure they were well represented in the 2018 nominations. The addition of this category was never intended to restrict performers of any non-European ethnic background from competing fully in ANY other category, whether in the judged categories or the Fan Award categories."
"We’ve done the best we could this year to be inclusive in all categories, but we know we can and must do better. We invite all members of the gay adult community to take a look at the nominated performers as a whole and give us a comprehensive critique."
The official nominees page has been updated to reflect the category change. Do you think AVN did the right thing in doing this?