(LGBT = Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender)
Notice I said “be aware” in the title. I am not saying you should avoid the publisher mentioned as unfriendly to LGBT in this post over at Crossed Genres. Rather, I’m telling you to be aware of it. What you choose to do with the information presented in the Crossed Genre post is entirely up to you.
However, I will offer my personal perspective on this. Flash Fiction Online, while not a market I can recall submitting to, has made a decision to enact an editorial policy without making such information available to you. Why is this a problem? Well, when you go to a publisher and you look at their guidelines, you get a good sense of what they are looking for and what they are not looking for. Strange Horizons, for example, publishes science fiction and fantasy, not hard cut literary fiction about old people. Likewise, Analog is very specifically a science fiction market, while F&SF is both fantasy and science fiction. None of these magazines, as far as I know, have a policy against certain kinds of literature that is not stated, especially not in the form of a bigoted viewpoint.
But Flash Fiction Online has such a policy that is not indicated to all of you. This is not a publication that says “we do not take stories about LGBT characters,” but one that says “submit anything that fits into this (a vague series of non-controversial categories), but secretly we’ll reject anything that doesn’t fit our narrow and biased view of the world, specifically because we have a religious, fundamentalist, and negative view of LGBT issues.” Now, this isn’t to say that everyone who works at FFO is necessarily anti-LGBT, but the fellow mentioned in Crossed Genres is.
So, for me, this information tells me that I cannot, in good faith, support such a magazine, not even with a direct link, when its editor so clearly holds a negative, and ignorant, view of LGBT people and issues. Period. There is no negotiation for me. As I wrote in the Outer Alliance when this issue came up:
I will not, under any circumstances, submit my work to or send money to, or read, any magazine or other publication which so obviously disapproves and holds biases against LGBT authors and subject matter. This is my personal bias, and a publication that is so willing to hide such information from the general public is, in my opinion, being disingenuous. They are, as I perceive it, hiding that information from people who might actually act upon such knowledge, precisely because they know, whether consciously or not, that to be forward with an anti-LGBT stance would constitute a loss of a share of their reading market.
I encourage you to read the Crossed Genres post linked above to get a clear picture of what this is all about. This is where I stand. Now it’s time for you to decide where you stand.
That is all.