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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Facts, Frigidity, Fantasy At Gay Coverage Awards

The chickens very wittily came home to roost for Moscow's arbiters of public opinion Thursday night at an irreverent awards ceremony for press coverage of gay issues held at Triangle Center, Moscow's gay community center, which opened last month.

From factual inaccuracy to unintentionally hilarious personal confessions in print, not a line of bad reporting was left unridiculed. And some of the "winners" even showed up to take their lumps.

Segodnya's Mikhail Lantsman found himself winner of the "Largest Number of Errors in a Finite Space" award. He had written, on the de-criminalization of homosexuality, "Mikhail Gorbachev changed article 121 of the Criminal Code of the R.S.F.S.R. (in the old edition) ..."

In fact, it was Yeltsin, not Gorbachev who changed the law; it wasn't the whole 121st article, but section 1 of it; it wasn't the R.F.S.F.R., but the Russian Federation; and it wasn't the old edition of the code, but the new one. Lantsman protested, but eventually accepted his toy rubber dog and light blue certificate. (Female winners got pink sheets.)

Other awards included "Strictest Morals," won by Moskovsky Komsomolets for printing "Why do men have each other in the r--r end?" and "Most Sincere Confession in Print," won by Olga Kaprikina of Komsomolskaya Pravda for her response to an open letter by Triangle Center in which she wrote that Triangle had diagnosed her as "homophobic and frigid." The letter had only called her homophobic.

Izvestia's Ada Baskina, writing of her experiences seeing lesbians all around in San Francisco, took the "Stormiest Fantasy" award. "I was walking down the street ... and suddenly it was as though everyone around me was watching me. I hear steps, turn around and see -- a woman. That inviting, pleading stare, so familiar to any woman."