GLAAD's 'Where We Are On TV,' Network Responsibility Index Finds LGBT Programming In Decline

On the heels of a record-breaking 2012, representations of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) characters on TV are on the decline, according to two new GLAAD studies.

Released Oct. 11, GLAAD"s 18th annual "Where We Are on TV" report released Friday says 3.3 percent of 796 regularly appearing characters on prime-time broadcast programs identify as LGBT. This figure represents a slight decline from last year, when LGBT characters comprised 4.4 percent.

Despite the decline, however, the organization had special praise for ABC Family's "The Fosters," as well as Fox's "Glee," which feature an interracial lesbian couple and an African-American transgender character, respectively.

Of the 46 LGBT regular and recurring characters on broadcast networks, half are women and 28 percent are people of color, according to the report.

Meanwhile, GLAAD's Annual Network Responsibility Index 2013 had similar findings. That report, also released Oct. 11, assigned grades to broadcast and cable networks based on quantity, quality and diversity of LGBT representation. No networks received "excellent" ratings, but ABC, ABC Family, NBC and Showtime were among those to nab "good" grades. CBS, HBO and USA were among those to be named as "adequate," while History and TBS received "failing" grades.

GLAAD's Wilson Cruz ("My So-Called Life") told The Huffington Post that while the sheer volume of LGBT characters on TV represented a vast improvement compared to a decade ago, there were still "glass ceilings" in place which kept networks from "genuinely reflecting our country's diversity."

"For both LGBT and minority characters, those ceilings must be broken for all TV audiences to find stories they identify with," Cruz said in an email statement.

You can find out more information about GLAAD's "Where We Are On TV" and Network Responsibility Index 2013 here.



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