Sunday, 13 February 2011

No Homo: Dear BBC...

Dear BBC,

Throughout today on BBC Radio 4 News - in the items about civil partnerships and same-sex marriage - you have used the word homosexual or homosexuals.
Why doesn't someone in the BBC newsroom ask some of their colleagues or friends who are lesbian or gay how they feel about being called "homosexual"?
It is at best outdated, at worst highly offensive.
Of the British newspapers only the Daily Telegraph still regularly uses it as the preferred term for lesbians and gay men.
When did you last hear "homosexual" being used by anyone in conversation?



I've complained to the BBC about this before, and got nowhere - I think I may be on some BBC list; "Serial complainer, nutter..."
I'll let you know how I get on this time...


  1. See the footnote to the post beneath this for more on The Daily Telegraph and "homosexuals".

    It may seem daft pointing out it's in a post just below it, but it's not if you land on this post through an internet search - thank you.

  2. I have and still do use the word homosexual in conversation. I like it myself, could you clarify why this is highly offensive? Or is it a clever joke?

  3. Can you give me a few examples of sentences, please The BEF?

  4. 'I once saw a homosexual'

    'Who's that homosexual over there'

    'Do they have homosexuals where you come from?'

    'Are you a homosexual?'

  5. You are most bizarre.



  6. None of those are real quotes......

    Returning to my question.....

  7. I think it's more outdated than offensive - again give me a non-ironic example of a conversational sentence.

    The offence would mainly be in the medicalisation it implies, and that only people who don't like "homosexuals" much still use that word, such as The Daily Telegraph, and the Christian Right...

  8. I see your point it is a bit outdated and yes it is used primarily by homophobes however i personally think of it as quite a warm, proud word but to each his own.

  9. But do you use it partly because it sounds a bit odd and quaint?

  10. I've only ever heard it used by gay men in an ironic way. It is insulting because it sounds like we're still curious medical cases. A "social problem".

  11. No i'm not the type, being a fall fan and whatnot, i use it because it is the official word for the phenomena that is gayness, plus it's phonetically pleasing. :)

  12. I realise my previous post is contradictory, what i meant to say was it has positive connotations, heterosexual, bisexual and homosexual no better or worse than the others all just equal, whereas ''gay' 'queer' are normally used in a negative context which has tainted them for me slightly.