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Is This an Acceptable Apology by NOW Magazine?

Posted by Jerrold Litwinenko / January 7, 2010

now magazine apology giambroneLast week, NOW Magazine writer Enzo Di Matteo made a mistake when he incorrectly assumed (and published) that city councillor and TTC Chair Adam Giambrone is gay.

When I emailed him to ask about the error, Di Matteo jokingly and curtly responded: "i meant he's happy... of course," but didn't go into any further detail or admit that he made a mistake. The media (both national giants and local indie outlets) ran with it. Fast-forward one week...

In this week's edition of NOW Magazine (and rather than making a straightforward, genuine apology), Di Matteo seems to pass the buck by writing a lengthy rebuttal in which he pokes at "the (predominantly conservative) media['s decision] to turn it into fodder for the day."

The words "sorry" or "apology" or "regret" appear nowhere in his follow-up.

How do you feel about Di Matteo's handling of the situation? Is this an acceptable apology? Is an apology even necessary?

Discussion

65 Comments

scottd / January 7, 2010 at 12:02 pm
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I guess we know who Enzo is not voting for.
So.. / January 7, 2010 at 12:04 pm
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Is he or isnt?
Just for personal reference.
TonyB / January 7, 2010 at 12:07 pm
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This is typical from arrogant NOW magazine authors and it happens all the time.
Rico / January 7, 2010 at 12:08 pm
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See it's important that the gay community parade their asses around town, but when someone else's sexuality is questioned or stomped on, it doesn't mean much. Sad.
Katie / January 7, 2010 at 12:08 pm
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This is the comment I posted over at Now's website:

"I have to ask: gay, bi, straight – why should we care?"

Personally... I don't care. But, if we shouldn't care, then why did you write it in the first place? And more importantly, why did you write it without even doing your research?

Don't blame the "conservative media" for your mistake. Own up and post a real apology for not doing your homework.

The only reason the "conservative media" even wrote about it in the first place is because it's hilarious that a publication would allow something like this without fact checking. Way to undermine the entire paper.
FitDarcie / January 7, 2010 at 12:10 pm
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Didn't know being called gay was an insult worth getting an apology for.
Rico replying to a comment from FitDarcie / January 7, 2010 at 12:15 pm
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Sure it is. It's as relevant as the gay community needs us to see their pride every frickin year. Like a lot in their community, it goes both ways.
Jonathan / January 7, 2010 at 12:18 pm
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Enzo must be married to Susan Cole.

What happened to doing things like this?

"An article by Enzo Di Matteo incorrectly stated Adam Giambrone is gay. He is not. NOW Magazine regrets the error."

Laura / January 7, 2010 at 12:19 pm
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I agree with Di Matteo on one count - a politician's sexual orientation shouldn't matter. Here's the problem: it DOES matter. A gay mayoral candidate is still news, and Di Matteo is the one who found it worth pointing out in the first place. I think there should be a clear apology and clarification, as there should be from any news outlet when they spread false information. Why didn't an editor or fact checker catch the error? It's the arrogance of criticising other media outlets rather than admitting their mistake that really rubs me the wrong way. Dude, it's YOUR fault that was news!

I thought Giambrone's response, on the other hand, was perfect. He set the record straight without making a fuss about it - bravo to him.
Laura replying to a comment from FitDarcie / January 7, 2010 at 12:21 pm
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It's not an insult, but it is a factual error. The apology is not to Giambrone for "insulting" him, it's for publishing misinformation for their readers.
hbr / January 7, 2010 at 12:23 pm
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Di Matteo is a homosexual.....i went to high school with him
Well? / January 7, 2010 at 12:23 pm
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so i take it he is gay??
MillerOut / January 7, 2010 at 12:24 pm
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Giambrone is a Miller clone and would be a disastrous mayor. That being said, NOW is a high school newspaper. What do you expect from high school writers.
Doubtful / January 7, 2010 at 12:28 pm
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Giambrones sister and/or brother is a tranny. So realistically he probably isnt gay. The odds of two siblings being gay or of that persuasion is really minimal.
Nexus / January 7, 2010 at 12:30 pm
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ya know.. I agree with Enzo's statement regarding "gay, bi, straight... why should we care" but at the same time it was Enzo himself who decided to let that "slip" out into the initial article.

To be honest, if Miller was gay and did everything the same way over his terms in office I'd still think he was a buffoon. I'd still feel that council is a dysfunctional pack of idiots regardless if they were all gay or all straight or all bi or all transgendered or all "sexually confused" or what have you.

If Giambrone could get a working city hall and be able to get this city back to "normal" then I wouldn't give two hoots if he played naked handball with his partner(s)in his private life.. if the politician is "getting the job done" it doesn't make a lick of difference what they do in the bedroom between two (or more) consenting adults.
Simba / January 7, 2010 at 12:36 pm
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If Enzo feels that its not a big deal, then why did he bother to mention it in the first place?

He was trying to be tongue-in-cheek and failed.

So typical of NOW-always critical of everyone else but themselves.
aukele replying to a comment from Doubtful / January 7, 2010 at 12:36 pm
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What about Tegan and Sara
Hamish Grant / January 7, 2010 at 12:40 pm
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This whole situation is so gay.
Doubtful replying to a comment from aukele / January 7, 2010 at 12:43 pm
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You mean the Sissor Sisters?

I said the odds "are really minimal".
Not out of the question.



reg. reader / January 7, 2010 at 12:45 pm
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It was a factual error. The editors at NOW should be embarrassed for not catching it. It is not, however, an insult. No apology necessary.
Secret / January 7, 2010 at 12:51 pm
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I heard he was dating Kyle Rae.
rowdyroddypiper / January 7, 2010 at 12:58 pm
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This non-story gives new meaning to the phrase "Ride the Rocket".
John / January 7, 2010 at 12:58 pm
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God. I read Enzo's piece last night and, like most commenters here, thought it was a piece of self-serving bullshit. NOW made a major factual mistake. They should have issued a standard correction, not Di Matteo's "Okay, we were wrong, but why are you making such a big deal out of it, you reactionary conservative media pigs?" (The idea that the media as a whole are inherently conservative is just as stupid as the idea that they're inherently liberal.)

And he doesn't really explain why he likes Giambrone, except that electing him would be some sort of symbolic "fuck you" to some strawman establishment. It's the rationale of a 14 year-old anti-authoritarian, not a thoughtful adult.
Xavier replying to a comment from Katie / January 7, 2010 at 01:10 pm
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C'mon Katie. Now magazine never had any credibility
possible / January 7, 2010 at 01:14 pm
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Any chance that he just got Giambrone and Smitherman mixed up?
hmm / January 7, 2010 at 01:20 pm
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I have to say Giambrone's sexuality has been a topic of light debate for a while now, and no one knew how to properly ask the question. So...now we know.

However...NOW's "apology" is a terrible effort to correct a false statement.
Lune / January 7, 2010 at 01:25 pm
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I think a proper apology is necessary when personal identity is wrongfully reported to a public. If NOW writes Giambrone is 40 years-old, they must apologize because they published incorrect information, not because it's bad to be 40. I wonder though, what caused the apology. Did anyone complained? Like TTC thought it damages their image or something? That would be a problem, and I hope it didn't upset Giambrone himself. It could've been cool if he said "it's noone's business".
Mark Dowling / January 7, 2010 at 01:35 pm
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I thought Giambrone handled it quite well actually.

Enzo di Matteo made the error but his editor is to blame for how it was handled, specifically allowing this dumbass to parade people pointing out that he was factually incorrect as homophobes.
Bobby / January 7, 2010 at 02:17 pm
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The man is gay. This is ridiculous! Its like when Dan Levy, or Rick Mercer or the guy from Canadian Next Top Model say they are not or they do not want it published.
Hamish Grant / January 7, 2010 at 02:33 pm
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Now we're getting to the meat of the problem.
hendrix / January 7, 2010 at 02:35 pm
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There was a time when George Michael and Elton John were straight ;)
?? replying to a comment from Bobby / January 7, 2010 at 02:38 pm
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Dick Mercer doesnt hide the fact he likes the men.

As for Levy...he hosts a show about watching another show. If thats not gay, what is?
Miroslav Glavic / January 7, 2010 at 02:41 pm
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So I am a double homophobe since I live East of Victoria Park Avenue and North of the 401.
I live so close to the zoo...maybe he will accuse me of being into beastiality?
Miroslav Glavic replying to a comment from Miroslav Glavic / January 7, 2010 at 02:43 pm
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I should of finished my last commrent...

I am not a homophobe by the way. But Enzo thinks so and double that too.

Is he aware that one of my best friends is gay, I known her for over 10 years. Is he aware that I help out with the pride parade?

Enzo needs to be fired
Enzo needs to write an apology (type an apology technically)
Editor needs to fire Enzo
Editor needs to write/type an apology him/herself too.
Kwil replying to a comment from Doubtful / January 7, 2010 at 03:04 pm
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Tegan and Sarah?
Comeonguy replying to a comment from Kwil / January 7, 2010 at 03:07 pm
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Read before your post, champ.

"aukele on January 7, 2010 at 12:36 PM , replying to a comment from Doubtful

What about Tegan and Sara?"
Ratpick / January 7, 2010 at 03:07 pm
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Terribly handled.

Enzo should have used the space to confess he had been sloppy. The rest is pure distraction.
Bobby replying to a comment from ?? / January 7, 2010 at 03:08 pm
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Meh, it seems he has a 'girlfriend' and i guess he is currently not into the same sex.

PS - most people one television are gay, especially in TO.
GoBalls replying to a comment from Bobby / January 7, 2010 at 03:14 pm
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Leslie Roberts digs men.
Joel M / January 7, 2010 at 03:15 pm
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It's official: Elton John is straight!

Oh wait...he isn't? Well I have to ask: gay, bi or straight, why should we care?

*cough*

MH / January 7, 2010 at 03:47 pm
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excuse me but... who CARES?? so they made a mistake, big deal, it happens, something's bound to slip by the fact checker on new year's eve. enough already, let's move on.

he's not gay, NOW is sorry, go back to your lives citizens.
?? replying to a comment from MH / January 7, 2010 at 04:00 pm
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Did you fact check that he isnt gay?

How are you so sure?

Dawn / January 7, 2010 at 04:32 pm
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It's so sad that someone has to apologize for something that shouldn't even be an issue in the first place.
gsg replying to a comment from Dawn / January 7, 2010 at 06:33 pm
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Agree with Dawn that whether or not someone is gay, straight or bi or whatever, should not matter to voters ...(other than those looking to date the person in question).

That said, for a so-called news-magazine to print factual errors is an issue and a very serious issue. And the unwillingness to own up to the error with any degree of grace confounds the initial mistake even further. That said, from personal experience (stories I've been involved in), there have been various instances where NOW magazine has shown itself to play mighty loose where the facts are concerned...and when the error is pointed out to them, they will tell you that they don't print corrections, but you are free to send in a "letter to the editor" which they get to edit of course.

As far as I'm concerned, the only bewildering aspect of this story is why anyone, let alone other media outlets would give credibility to anything in Now's editorial section. Surely folks now by now that the only good thing about that rag are the listings.

ps. My own suspicion is that NOW and DiMatteo know/knew Councillor Giambrone's orientation ... but were looking to gain him some coverage. I mean they practically act as his PR department.
Tweedle Dee replying to a comment from Dawn / January 7, 2010 at 06:44 pm
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NOW should apologize because they got a fact wrong, it matters not what the incorrect information was, it matters that it was wrong.

If they said he was black would it matter? If they said he was really a woman? If they said he was an immigrant? NONE of these issues really matter to his ability to govern... what matters is that they got it wrong. Saying Adam is a black immigrant woman wouldn't be an issue, but it would be factually incorrect.
handfed / January 7, 2010 at 06:54 pm
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NOW magazine supports islamic jihadists
Kwil replying to a comment from Comeonguy / January 7, 2010 at 06:59 pm
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Oh sorry comment police!!! I scanned thru comments quickly via iphone screen.

Giambrone is still a dillweed.
Ryan L replying to a comment from Tweedle Dee / January 7, 2010 at 07:17 pm
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Agreed. It is of utmost importance that a news media outlet release retractions and apologies to incorrect information if their 'news' is going to hold any weight.
woody replying to a comment from scottd / January 7, 2010 at 08:17 pm
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Mr. Giambrone's not gay, and Mr. Matteo's a douchebag who should be looking for a job. What a pill.
jack / January 7, 2010 at 10:15 pm
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i am sure he likes A & F t shirts
cocoa / January 8, 2010 at 04:12 am
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Amateurish of them to handle it like this. I guess this criticism makes me a conservative :-(
Feldwebel Wolfenstool / January 8, 2010 at 08:00 am
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Why is he supposed to APOLOGIZE? Something WRONG with being a bit gay? Why not APOLOGIZE for mistakingly referring to him as LEFT-HANDED?
Until... / January 8, 2010 at 08:16 am
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Why is everyone saying he isnt gay?
I have yet to read anythng facutal refuting NOW's claim?
An apology isnt needed until they are proven wrong.
Respect / January 8, 2010 at 08:54 am
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It's not a question of whether it's good or bad to be gay, but more that coming out is a very personal thing and something that deserves respect. Whether Adam Giambrone is gay or not, it is disrespectful to out someone (who has not come out) without their consent. Adam deserved a real apology.
gotcha replying to a comment from Respect / January 8, 2010 at 09:02 am
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Oh nice, so he is gay.
Good for him.
tripper / January 8, 2010 at 09:39 am
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"Why is everyone saying he isnt gay?"

Because Giambrone himself commented on the
NOW article and said he isn't gay. It was printed in various newpapers. Google it.
Ok replying to a comment from tripper / January 8, 2010 at 09:46 am
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Cool.
Thats too bad though :(
Bobby replying to a comment from jack / January 8, 2010 at 10:05 am
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Wow thats a complete stereotype. Have you seen Jersey Shore?
got it! replying to a comment from Bobby / January 8, 2010 at 10:24 am
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yes and both giambrone and the jersey douches are gay.
jack / January 8, 2010 at 02:29 pm
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but then again, how could he be gay given his lack of fashion sense..so.. NOT gay..
Huh replying to a comment from jack / January 8, 2010 at 02:48 pm
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Have you been up Church St?
Its all assless chaps and flannel.
Thats considered fashion sense?
tripper replying to a comment from Huh / January 8, 2010 at 05:17 pm
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"Have you been up Church St?
Its all assless chaps and flannel.
Thats considered fashion sense?"

Where the hell do YOU hang out? The Black Eagle?
jack replying to a comment from tripper / January 9, 2010 at 12:21 am
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or maybe steamworks
Huh replying to a comment from tripper / January 11, 2010 at 08:05 am
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It was a sweeping generalization about the Village.

So am i wrong or is there no facutal evidence such items dont appear along Church St?

Should I post an apology?
rougerrr / February 19, 2013 at 04:31 pm
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ah NOW Magazine. The self importance of regurgitation. I stopped reading NOW Magazine, about 15 years ago when one of it's regular openly gay writers criticized the children who were in legal cases with the accused Michael Jackson , accused of pedophilia. The writer ever so proudly declared he wished he was a little boy having sexual contact with Michael Jackson, and that those children were in fact 'lucky' and should 'be quiet'. Gee isn't that the line pedophiles use on their victims. Well, when I wrote to NOW Magazine to complain at how offensive this is to victims/ children etc... They took the line that the writers personal opinion was his alone.

So...they are just a sleazy rag...who ache for fame. If you have ever known any of the mediocre people who have taken photographs, written or worked for them in any way..you will know what I am talking about.

NOW only succeeds due to the sleazy ads it promotes. I can get movie times off the net, or in the STAR. And the 'features' on local theatres etc would be best served by other means, net, indy reviews etc. It has not merit, mediocre writers, and base photography.

But hey if you are into human trafficking and need to post an AD they have space for sale.

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