Complaint letter about eHarmony

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To Slice Teleision:

My life now has meaning thanks to Slice.

Every week night at 11 p.m. my cat Khan and I curl up on the couch to take in the best show known to human kind: Trading Spouses. I absolutely love watching neurotic Americans suss out their character flaws on television. It makes me reflect on my own shortcomings and how we are all just humans with our unique strengths and weaknesses.

It is one of the only shows on television that candidly addresses vital issues of socio-economic class.

It’s the only television show I watch with any regularity. I used to watch it on another network but it was sadly cancelled. Thank you so much for bringing it back!

You air many shows that have strong appeal to a gay and lesbian audience. As a gay viewer I’m really pleased to see that your commercials and shows take the gay viewer into account.

This, however, can not be said for all of your advertisements.

If you’ll permit me I’d like to bring something to your attention. I’ve noticed advertisements for the match-making service eHarmony.ca, and believe you should seriously consider if they have a place on your network.

As you probably know, eHarmony do not provide an option for same-sex matches on their website. This in itself is not that big of a deal. Different businesses have different customers, niches and so forth. Not every business can be everything to everyone.

What I find particularly troubling is not the effect of their business practices but the chilling reasons behind it.

eHarmony’s co-founder and chairman Neil Warren Clark has strong ties to the conservative Christian movement in the United States, particularly James Dobson and Focus on the Family – an organisation vehemently opposed to the rights of gay people. The site has been heavily promoted on Dobson’s radio show.

In interviews, Warren has defended his positions saying eHarmony has only studied successful opposite-sex marriages. They have not and will not make any similar studies on same-sex marriages. He has also said that eHarmony’s goal is creating marriages, and since same-sex marriage is “largely illegal” that’s an “issue for us.”

A large part of being gay in Canada is enjoying fun, intelligent television that candidly addresses issues in society. But being gay is not just about being fun. At the core of our movement are the rights to live, love and learn free from discrimination and oppression.

eHarmony and the organisations associated with it, openly propagate heterosexism and homophobia. This is not just a simple business decision about economics, but part of a fundamentalist Christian philosophy which has a rather limited view of love, family and society.

This world view is not shared by the majority of Canadians who support full equality for gay and lesbian people.

As an avid viewer of your fantastic programming I respectfully encourage you to replace their ads with something more inclusive and a little less creepy…. like an advertisement for Stephen Harper’s new bath cream… or something!

I remain,

Yours truly,

Nathaniel Christopher

I am a resident of Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada who has blogged here for 20 years. I like to share my thoughts and feelings on my own online space. From 1998 until 2017 I worked as a journalist and I hope to use this website as an archive for all of my stories.

1 Comment

  1. What a great letter! I didn’t know all those facts about EHarmony. I can’t stand their crappy commercials anyways! I do however love “trading spouses”! There is also another similar show on these days but I can’t think of the name of it right now. Hmm….

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