Gay Times editor sacked and articles removed over offensive tweets

Josh RiversImage copyright Gay Times
Image caption Josh Rivers became Gay Times Editor last month

The newly appointed Gay Times editor Josh Rivers has been sacked over offensive tweets he posted in the past.

The magazine also wrote on Twitter that they have removed all articles written by Rivers from their website.

The tweets, some of which have now been deleted, have been described as racist, transphobic, homophobic and anti-Semitic.

Mr Rivers, who has since apologised, also made remarks about obese people and children with disabilities.

Gay Times said: “Gay Times do not tolerate such views and will continue to strive to promote inclusivity.

“We sincerely apologise for the offence that has been caused, particularly to those members of our wider community to whom such inappropriate and unacceptable commentary was the focus.”

The publication added it is relaunching on 30 November with “what is quite possibly the most significant overhaul in its 33-year history”.

It will feature submissions and significant contributions from “the far reaches of our wonderful and diverse LGBTQ community”.

Damage resurfaced

Rivers was appointed editor in October. In a statement released before his removal from the post, he said: “I have long taken steps to address the issues that prevented me from treating people with the respect and kindness I value so dearly now.

“It is because of my past and my own awakening that I’ve since pivoted everything in my life towards supporting and empowering our community.”

He expressed sadness that “the damage I caused before has now resurfaced to cause more pain”.

Benjamin Cohen, Chief Executive of LGBT news organisation PinkNews, told the BBC: “I am frankly appalled at the litany of offensive Twitter posts that Josh Rivers made over a number of years.

“It is beyond surprising that the level of inappropriate and hurtful comments were not uncovered by Gay Times during the recruitment process for the appointment of the key role of editor.

“As someone who for many years wrote a column for Gay Times, I’m saddened that what was a great institution has had its brand so recklessly damaged by someone who was in office for just a few weeks.”

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