Commercial Closet Association

Commercial Closet Association is a New York City based non-profit organization , founded in 2001 [1] to educate and influence the $ 1.1 trillion annual worldwide advertising market ($ 128 billion in the US alone) [2] to foster understanding, respect and inclusion of lesbian , gay , bisexual and transgender ( LGBT )

The organization is not a pressure group or watchdog on advertising. It is not possible to enforce rules or represent a single “LGBT point of view” exists, given the great diversity of the LGBT population. It does not seek to embarrass advertisers, organize protests against them or their advertising, or force them to do anything but expand their understanding and awareness of LGBT.

The organization believes that by reaching the image makers themselves, the future will be more inclusive and positive through this education.

Commercial Closet Association educates the business and advertising world through advertising training, online advertising, Best LGBT advertising issues, and online advertising. [3] [4]

The organization raises ad industry awareness of the issues of homophobia and transphobia in mainstream advertising, and has created joint efforts in conjunction with the Association of National Advertisers , the American Association of Advertising Agencies , as well as New York politicians like Thomas Duane , and major Tony Wright, Chairman of Lowe Worldwide . [5]

The CCA Ad Library on its website is a global online collection of 4,000+ LGBT-themed ads from over 33 countries, including hundreds of companies and ad agencies, [6] going back to 1917. Practices, and other resources. The Ad Library is intended to give advertisers and advertising agencies guidance on their work and competitors. The Ad Library has reached over 6 million people, and 100,000 unique visitors monthly. By seen what competitors have done, it works to provide corporate confidence to pursue more positive and inclusive LGBT representations.

The Best Practices guidelines are designed to meet the expectations of LGBT people and have been presented to national and international advertising agencies including American Express , AT & T , Campbell Soup , Citibank , IBM , Hewlett Packard , Kraft Foods , Miller Brewing , Motorola , Whirlpool Corporation , Merrill Lynch , Yahoo , Google , Quaker Oats Co. , Johnson & Johnson , Glaxo SmithKline,Toyota , Nationwide Insurance , Prudential Financial , Arnold Communications and more, as well as universities Including Princeton , Yale , Columbia , Dartmouth , Duke , and others.

The organization provides media outreach through seeding and fielding 40-50 annual press stories and by conductor worldwide advertising tracking and analysis of LGBT representations, complete with ratings and visitor feedback. News agencies and media outlets have been reached CNN , ABC , BBC , VH-1 , The New York Times , The Wall Street Journal , Business Week , Financial Times , Newsweek , [7] USA Today [8] Adweek , [9] ] Adweek , The Hollywood Reporter , [10] and more.

CCA also publishes original data reports including the Corporate Sponsorship Report , a first-of-its-kind tracking LGBT sponsorship spending, broken out by top spending companies and top earning LGBT organizations and events.

The Images in Advertising Awards for their LGBT Representations in ads each year. It is sponsored by ad agencies Including Lowe Worldwide , Arnold Worldwide , Interpublic Group , SSH + K, and others. [11]

Target audience

The organization is a third party to achieve its goals: marketing and ad agency corporate officer | executives, university students / professors, media, and consumers.


CCA has partnerships with leading advertising industry associations and media, and the largest LGBT organizations in the United States. Ad industry groups include the National Advertisers Association and the Advertising Educational Foundation. Media include The New York Times , Sirius Satellite Radio , and Adweek . Gay community groups include the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and the school-oriented Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network ( GLSEN ).

GLSEN carries a Student Viewing Guide for Teachers, and Human Rights Campaigns CCA’s monthly gay advertising issues column, the Advertising Best Practices and excerpts from Commercial Closet in the marketing section of WorkNet.

About CCA’s Founder / Executive Director

New York City -based business journalist Michael Wilke has written about lesbian and gay advertising issues since 1992 for Inside Media, Advertising Age ( Crain Communications ), Adweek ( Nielsen Company ), and other publications. He is credited with coining the term “vague gay” in 1997 while at Advertising Age . [12] [13] and has-been Interviewed by The Wall Street Journal , The New York Times , Associated Press , and Reuters; he has appeared on the US television networks and internationally to discuss the subject. Wilke served as a judge in 2006 for the Association of National Advertisers Multicultural Excellence Awards, as the New York chapter President of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association from 1998-2000, and co-program of the 1998 NLGJA National Conference in Las Vegas . He is a 2005 recipient of the Hearst Professional in Residence Fellowship, was a 2002 Crain Lecturer at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University , [14] was honored in 2001 as one of the “OUT 100” by Out (magazine) [15] ] [16] and received a 1998 honor at theGLAAD Media Awards for his journalistic coverage of gay advertising, marketing, and media. His syndicated national column, The Commercial Closet, appears in leading LGBT newspapers and web sites. [11]

About CCA’s History

The organization Developed out of work by Advertising Age business magazine journalist Michael Wilke , Who Was Invited in 1996 by the New York City Gay & Lesbian Film Festival to present a worldwide history of LGBT representations in commercials. Wilke was already known for his work in gay and lesbian matters in advertising. Wilke’s video program, called “The Commercial Closet” appeared in 1997, then was widely presented at film festivals internationally, and in 2001 Wilke was funded by broadcast historian Michael Collins, then of Quinnipiac College of Connecticut, [17] to start a full nonprofit organization by the name [18] The project is assisted by the pro-bono work of New York-based web development firmMediapolis and designer Stephen Mack of Gnomist, to develop the first version of CCA’s online advertising library and ad ratings system at Three years later, the name evolved to be the name of the organization.

Funding support

CCA is supported through foundation grants, corporate sponsorships, fundraising events, membership, individual donations, and training fees.

See also

  • LGBT portrayals in media


  1. Jump up^ Adrienne Mand (2001), “Site for gay ads beginnings” , Advertising Age
  2. Jump up^ Ikard, John (2005), Sustainable Capitalism: A Matter of Common Sense , Sterling, VA: Kumarian Press, ISBN  1-56549-206-4
  3. Jump up^ Ken Wheaton (2006), “Awards Show Proves to be Gay Affair” ,Advertising Age
  4. Jump up^ Andrew Hampp (2007), “The Gays Celebrate Progress Advertising” ,Advertising Age
  5. Jump up^ Andrew Hampp (2008), “Mad Ave’s Other Diversity Problem: Commercial Closet Calls it Agencies to Eliminate Ads in LGBT Stereotypes” ,Advertising Age
  6. Jump up^ Aparna Kumar (2001-05-08), “Commercials: Out of the Closet” , Wired
  7. Jump up^ Steve Friess (2002), “Advertising: Sensitivity Training” , Newsweek
  8. Jump up^ Michael McCarthy (2001-05-11), “Do Popeye and Bluto love juice – gold Each Other?” , USA Today , Retrieved 2010-04-30 Check date values ​​in:( help ) |year= / |date= mismatch
  9. Jump up^ Eleftheria Parpis (2008), “The Joke’s Over: Withdrawing allegedly offensive gay-themed ads puts industry on notice” , Adweek
  10. Jump up^ Chris Marlowe (2001), “Online Closet Outs For Gay Community” , The Hollywood Reporter
  11. ^ Jump up to:b “Commercial Closet Association website” . . Retrieved 2014-01-15 .
  12. Jump up^ Stuart Elliott (1997-06-30), “Homosexual imagery is spreading from print campaigns to general-interest TV programming.” , The New York Times, retrieved 2010-04-30
  13. Jump up^ Sender, Katherine,Business, Not Politics, (Columbia University Press, 2004), 261, Notes 20
  14. Jump up^ “2002 Crain Speakers” , Official Medill / Northwestern website , 2002, archived from the original on 2010-06-13
  15. Jump up^ June Thomas (2001), “Briefs: Out, December 2001” , Slate
  16. Jump up^ “Out 100, Alumni 2001” , Out Magazine , 2001
  17. Jump up^ Robin Wallace (2003-09-16), “Does Spending Power Buy Cultural Acceptance?” , Fox News
  18. Jump up^ Ken Liebeskind (2001), “Gay Themed Ads and a Web Site That Tracks Them” , MediaPost permanent dead link ]