FOX and the BBC: Tell The Truth About Qatar

As TV networks rake in millions of dollars from World Cup coverage, they have a responsibility to shine a light on what’s really happening inside Qatar.

Every four years, millions of soccer fans tune into networks like FOX and the BBC to watch their favorite soccer players play in the world’s biggest tournament – the World Cup. But this year, they’ll be watching the games take place in Qatar – a country that severely punishes people for simply being LGBT+.

With the World Cup just months away, TV networks will soon be showing what a modern and cosmopolitan nation Qatar has become. But they must realize, they also have a responsibility to shine a light on Qatar’s dangerous and deadly treatment of LGBT+ people. These networks cannot simply show the glitzy new stadiums and glistening modern skyscrapers. They must speak to the reality on the ground for LGBT+ Qataris, which includes 3-5 years imprisonment and even the death penalty for being gay.

And these networks should have no issue doing just that. Both FOX and the BBC allegedly value inclusivity and diversity and respect human rights – at least according to their company manifestos. Will you tell FOX and the BBC to hold FIFA and Qatari officials accountable for their LGBTphobia?

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To José Manuel Pérez Tornero, Presidente de la TVE Steve Burke, Director General y Productor Ejecutivo de Telemundo:

The media has the power to shine a light on the real conditions inside this year’s World Cup host nation – Qatar. For the country’s LGBT+ community, Qatar is a dangerous place to be themselves.

In Qatar, it is still illegal to be gay, and homosexuality can lead to imprisonment or even death under Sharia law. Just this past holiday season, authorities in the country ordered rainbow-colored toys to be removed from shelves because they were deemed “contrary” to the country’s “traditions.”

This is the reality that should be included in any coverage of this year’s FIFA World Cup.

FOX and the BBC, as this year’s broadcasting partners, also claim to hold values of diversity and inclusion. On FOX’s website, it says that you encourage the “front-line talent to apply their voices to the subject of inclusion, representation and their intersection with sports culture.”

It is up to you to give the world a glimpse into the very real dangers Qatar’s LGBT+ community faces. You can help hold both FIFA and Qatari officials accountable for their blatant LGBTphobia.

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Goal: 500