Pulse shooting survivors sue Google, Facebook, Twitter for ‘providing support and resources to ISIS’

By : Jeremy Williams
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ORLANDO | Sixteen survivors from the June 12, 2016 massacre at Pulse Orlando filed a federal lawsuit in the Middle District Court of Florida April 4 against Google, Facebook and Twitter asserting the online media titans provided “material support” to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, commonly referred to as ISIS.

The 122-page lawsuit states the plaintiffs are seeking damages against the three companies “for aiding, abetting, and knowingly providing support and resources to ISIS, the notorious designated foreign terrorist organization that carried out the June 12, 2016 terrorist attack in Orlando, Florida, that killed 49 innocent civilians and wounded some 53 others.” The lawsuit goes on to list the 16 plaintiffs.

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Want your voice heard? Take Watermark’s LGBTQ community survey

By : Watermark Staff
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Dear Watermark reader,

We would like to invite you to take a new survey about your opinions and preferences, from an LGBTQ perspective.

There’s power in our Pride! Participating in this study helps open doors and minds around the world, and influences positive changes for our community. Previous surveys have yielded 45,000 respondents from 150 countries! You may have seen it quoted in the New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, etc.

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Prosecutors: Pulse Nightclub shooter intended to attack Disney Springs

By : wire report
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ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The Orlando nightclub shooter intended to attack Disney World’s shopping and entertainment complex by hiding a gun in a stroller but became spooked by police and instead chose the gay club as his target, prosecutors said Wednesday.

Prosecutors revealed those details during their closing arguments in the trial of Noor Salman, the widow of Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen. Salman, 31, is accused of helping her husband in the attack that killed 49 people in 2016. She is charged with obstruction and providing material support to a terrorist organization and faces up to life in prison if convicted.

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Missing transgender teen found safely after misgendering by Largo Police

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Largo, Fla. | A missing transgender teenager has been found safely after being misgendered on the official Largo Police Department Facebook page Feb. 12.

“Help us find runaway Zachary Musgrave,” the police department’s original post, now deleted, read. “He is a Largo High student, 16 years of age. He has not been seen since Jan. 19. He does not have a vehicle.”

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Ex-teacher has certificates suspended over anti-gay comments

By : wire report
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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A former New Jersey high school teacher who posted anti-gay comments on her Facebook page several years ago has agreed to a three-year suspension of her teaching certificates.

NJ.com reports that Jenye “Viki” Knox initially appealed a state Department of Education’s decision to revoke her three certificates to the Office of Administrative Law. But she then informed the education department she would agree to the three-year suspension.

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Tampa Bay Overheard: Locks of Love

By : Anonymous
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The Tampa Bay LGBTQ community came together mid-December for a local woman undergoing chemotherapy.

6S Boutique owner Andrew Citino approached the community via Facebook with a simple request: if they were able, to donate spare blonde wigs for a woman who’d lost her hair to cancer treatment. “A woman going through chemotherapy has lost her hair,” he shared, “and we just want to help make her feel beautiful.”

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Gay couple announces pregnancy with Lego fairytale

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A gay couple announced the upcoming birth of their twin boys via a Lego fairytale short film.

Sean Gannon and Spencer Clinton Parker posted the video on Facebook which shows two princes who are in love but feel something is missing from their lives. The princes go on a journey and encounter a mermaid who has magic beans that can tell them what they need. They come across a dragon, a wizard and finally a brave princess who gives the princes twin Lego babies.

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Free Film Screening – Visual AIDS: Day With(out) Art

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Visual AIDS: Day With(out) Art – FREE Film Screening and Audience Talkback with Sam Graper, Community Relations Manager at Orlando Immunology Center »

In recognition of World AIDS Day, join us for a FREE screening of ALTERNATE ENDINGS, RADICAL BEGINNINGS. The film addresses Black narratives within the ongoing AIDS epidemic and features seven innovative short videos from artists Mykki Blanco, Cheryl Dunye & Ellen Spiro, Reina Gossett, Thomas Allen Harris, Kia Labeija, Tiona Nekkia McClodden, and Brontez Purnell.

In spite of the impact of HIV/AIDS within Black communities, these stories and experiences are constantly excluded from larger artistic and historical narratives. In 2016 African Americans represented 44% of all new HIV diagnoses in the United States. Given this context, it is increasingly urgent to feature a myriad of stories that consider and represent the lives of those housed within this statistic. ALTERNATE ENDINGS, RADICAL BEGINNINGS seeks to highlight the voices of those that are marginalized within broader Black communities nationwide, including queer and trans people.

The commissioned projects include intimate meditations of young HIV positive protagonists; a consideration of community-based HIV/AIDS activism in the South; explorations of the legacies and contemporary resonances within AIDS archives; a poetic journey through New York exploring historical traces of queer and trans life, and more. Together, the videos provide a platform centering voices deeply impacted by the ongoing epidemic.

Founded in 1988, Visual AIDS is a national organization that uses the power of art as a catalyst to engage public response, dialogue, and scholarship around HIV/AIDS through presenting contemporary art exhibitions, artist projects, public events, and publications.

For more information on ALTERNATE ENDINGS, RADICAL BEGINNINGS visit:

https://www.visualaids.org/projects/detail/alternate-endings-radical-beginnings

Following the film screening, an audience talkback will occur with Sam Graper, Community Relations Manager at Orlando Immunology Center.

For more info on OIC:
https://www.facebook.com/OICOrlando

For more info on Sam Graper:
https://www.facebook.com/sam.graper

Please call 407.896.4231 ext. 261 with questions about this program.

Prominent activist heckles Russian ambassador over Chechnya

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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A prominent activist on Wednesday heckled Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. over the anti-LGBT crackdown in Chechnya.

A video posted to Michael Petrelis’ Facebook page shows him shouting “Stop killing gay Chechens” at Anatoly Antonov as he was delivering a speech at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco.

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Bijou Phillips apologizes for gay-shaming Daniel Franzese on set of ‘Bully’

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Bijou Phillips has apologized for gay-shaming and harassing her “Bully” co-star Daniel Franzese.

Franzese, also known for his roles on “Mean Girls” and “Looking,” accused Phillips of being homophobic and fat-shaming him on the set of the 2001 film “Bully.”

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Ellen Page opens up about Brett Ratner sexually harassing, outing her at 18

By : Wire Report
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NEW YORK (AP) – Ellen Page says director Brett Ratner outed her in front of “X-Men” cast and crew when she was a sexually unsure 18-year-old, leaving her feeling violated and ashamed.

In a Facebook post Friday, Page said Ratner used a pre-production meeting for the 2006 film “X-Men: The Last Stand” to make the comment she called “horrific.”

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Watermark is hiring: Online Media Assistant

By : Jeremy Williams
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Watermark is seeking a full-time online media assistant. The online media assistant will maintain, as well as create, content for our website, WatermarkOnline.com. They will handle all Watermark social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, etc.), organize and promote Watermark contests and support the business manager with administrative duties.

This is an on-site position at our Orlando office. This is an entry-level position for a self-motivated, multi-faceted worker seeking to thrive in a challenging, fast paced environment. Position includes health insurance benefits, dental and 401K options.

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