An LGBTQ advocacy group announced it will no longer give an award to MSNBC’s Joy-Ann Reid after posts calling same-sex acts “gross” resurfaced this week on her now-defunct blog, “The Reid Report.” Reid maintains that her old blog was hacked by someone trying to make her look bad, but the Internet Archive, the nonprofit that powers the “Wayback Machine,” is disputing Reid’s claim.
In a statement released Tuesday, PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) announced they have decided to rescind the Straight for Equality in Media award they had planned to give the MSNBC host. In December 2017, Reid apologized for old blog posts in which she mocked then-congressman Charlie Christ as being a closeted gay man named “Miss Charlie.”
Additional blog posts along these lines resurfaced earlier this week, but Reid and her attorneys have maintained that her website was hacked and that the Wayback Machine’s archives were tampered with by an external actor, a claim the Internet Archive denies.
“When we reviewed the archives, we found nothing to indicate tampering or hacking of the Wayback Machine versions,” Internet Archive officer manager Chris Butler stated to BuzzFeed News. “At least some of the examples of allegedly fraudulent posts provided to us had been archived at different dates and by different entities.”
Previously PFLAG stated it would give Reid the award anyway because she apologized, but now it says the most recent blog posts and Reid’s insistence that she was hacked has pushed the nonprofit organization to rescind the honor.
“When we extended our invitation to Ms. Reid to honor her at our 45th anniversary celebration, we did so knowing about the blog posts from the late 2000s regarding Charlie Crist,” PFLAG National president Jean Hodges said in a statement. “We appreciated how she stepped up, took ownership, apologized for them, and did better—this is the behavior and approach we ask of any ally. However, in light of new information, and the ongoing investigation of that information, we must at this time rescind our award to Ms. Reid.”