One Orlando Alliance’s Acts of Love and Kindness

By : Maia Monet
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Acts of Love and Kindness is a movement grown out of the spirit of giving and good deeds witnessed in the aftermath of the tragedy at Pulse Nightclub on June 12, 2016. The One Orlando Alliance — a coalition of more than 30 Orlando LGBTQ+ organizations — mobilizes this movement to inspire the Orlando community and beyond to engage in volunteerism, share stories and show support through acts of love and kindness. Those participating are encouraged to share their stories on social media using the hashtag: #ActLoveGive.

Watermark is hiring: Multimedia Assistant

By : Jeremy Williams
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Watermark is seeking a full-time multimedia assistant. The multimedia 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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UK promises to prosecute online hate crimes vigorously

By : Wire Report
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LONDON (AP) – British authorities are promising to prosecute hate crimes committed online as vigorously as those that take place face-to-face, recognizing the growth of hate speech on social media and the potential for such crimes to affect large numbers of people.

New guidelines issued Aug. 21 outline a tough stance on cyber hate attacks on the basis of race, religion, disability, sexual orientation or transgender identity. In addition, the guidance for the first time recognizes hate crimes against bisexuals as distinct from homophobic or transphobic attacks.

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07.12.17 Publisher’s Desk

By : Rick Claggett
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One day at a time. That’s what they tell me. It’s one of the most useful tools in sobriety, especially in the beginning.

I stopped drinking on October 1, 2015. It was nine days before the annual Come Out With Pride celebration at Lake Eola in downtown Orlando and I was nervous. How was someone like me, someone who would binge drink at every opportunity, going to make it through this major weekend-long event at only nine days sober? The answer: 24 hours at a time.

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Ladyfingers: Everybody knows

By : Sabrina Ambra
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I don’t know about you, but I could use a drink. A stiff, bullshit-free drink. The kind that touches your lips but you don’t know it’s anywhere near your body until it punches you from the inside. Reminds you that you’re alive. Because I swear to Jameson it feels like I’m in the middle of M. Nightshamanadingdong film-twist. I mean, this shit is really happening you guys. And I can’t just Into the Wild this bad boy and wish you all the best. I’m in it. We’re in it. But, I need a break.

We all need a break. There’s no quitting, but a breather might be nice. Remember the good ol’ days of Facebook? “Sabrina Ambra: is so bored OMG!!!” Shame on me, forever rolling my eyes at Tom’s 17th picture of a sunset. How dare I internally complain about Tina’s poll on who has better ice, 7-11 or Wawa? I’ll take an entire feed of Tyrell’s fish tank updates over what I scroll through on a daily basis. I know I can always delete the fucking app and pretend I’m above it, but until then can we talk about it?

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New report says Ethiopia blocked social media, gay rights sites

By : Wire Report
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ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) – Ethiopia’s government illegally blocked social media and news websites during the months of turmoil that led to the country’s ongoing state of emergency, a new report says.

The report by Amnesty International and the Open Observatory of Network Interference also found “systematic interference” with access to political opposition sites and ones supporting freedom of expression and gay rights.

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Tampa Bay Overheard: St. Pete pets, Bay-to-Bay travel and Hillary at the Fairgrounds

By : Anonymous
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A reason for paws in St. Pete

We love our pets (they are practically children to us), so it should come as no surprise that super-LGBT-friendly St. Pete is also super pet-friendly, according to Zumper.com. It named St. Petersburg the Most Pet Friendly City in the U.S. The rankings were determined based on the cities’ number of apartment listings that allowed pets, the number of pet stores in an area, how often the weather is “pleasant” enough to walk in and how many dog parks a place has. Zumper attributes St. Pete’s rating to the large number of cat-friendly apartments and the abundance of pet stores, pet restaurants and veterinarians. St. Pete once again leads the pack in terms of anti-discrimination – the city welcomes any (legal) animal you want to make feel at home with you, regardless of species. Now go take your cat out on a leash to its favorite coffee shop in its favorite city in order to celebrate.

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Wyoming parade float mocks transgender bathroom equality

By : Wire Report
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Cody, Wyo. (AP) – A float that appeared during a Wyoming parade has been the subject of criticism, with many suggesting it insulted members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

The Cody Enterprise reports the float seen during the Stampede Parade over the July 2 weekend featured a wildlife scene and outhouse with a sign that read “Transgender Restroom.” An arrow on the sign pointed at the outhouse.

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Military investigates 2 Marines for anti-gay Facebook post

By : Wire Report
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SAN DIEGO (AP) — The Marine Corps is investigating two active-duty Marines at Camp Pendleton for a social media post of a photo of a corporal in uniform holding an assault rifle and the message: “Coming to a gay bar near you!”

Maj. Staci Reidinger said June 16 that fellow Marines alerted officials to the post, and authorities were able to track down the Marine in the photograph and another one who reposted it.

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High Fidelity: Change for no one

By : Miguel Fuller
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MiguelFuller_Mug

Miguel Fuller

“OMG! Miguel has made his relationship status Facebook official?!”

No one wants to admit that they put stock behind being “Facebook official,” but let’s face it: What we post on social media is a record of our lives. There’s nothing wrong with that. I’m one of the main offenders of living my life out on social media. I may be narcissistic, but it’s nice to look back and see the happy moments, even the mistakes, of yesteryear. That’s why it’s such a shame when sometimes we have to hide life changing moments in our lives.

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Getting Involved: Putting the “Out” in Political Clout

By : Stephen Miller
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At a time when political influence may seem out of citizens’ hands, LGBT people are making their voices heard on state and local issues. On March 1, local LGBT people helped stop a state bill that would’ve erased local bans and resolutions against fracking, a controversial mining technique that many say has caused earthquakes and land damage, but has proven damages to drinkable water in eight other states.

“If anyone doubts we can make a difference, today proved them wrong!” Chairman of Orange Soil and Water Conservation District Eric Rollings says.

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Founder’s Day: Redefining my arc

By : Tom Dyer
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Tom Dyer Watermark gay

Tom Dyer

I decided to sell Watermark to our talented publisher, Rick Claggett, some time ago. In fact, I considered timing the transition to coincide with our 20th anniversary celebration last fall. But I wasn’t ready.

Last week I finally shared my plans with Watermark’s staff, just before the lunch break at our year-end retreat. I’d been contemplating the details for months,so my emotional reaction was a surprise. The shocked look on their faces illuminated something I had avoided: that a remarkable chapter of my life was ending. Along with some staff members, I shed a few tears.

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