Hallmark is not a network known for making waves, but after comments from former stars about the LGBTQ+ community, the channel was facing criticism. Their response? An updated code of conduct for their fans.
Former Hallmark Stars Have Faced Backlash For Anti-LGBTQ+ Comments
Many of Hallmark’s stars have moved to Great American Family, a competing channel that has made no secret of their stance on making content about “traditional” marriages. Suggest previously reported on former Hallmark star and current GAF actress Danica McKellar’s failure to condemn GAF star Candace Cameron Bure’s anti-LGBTQ+ comments in a recent interview.
In the wake of this backlash, many demanded that Hallmark—which has made movies featuring same-sex couples before—update their code of conduct regarding the LGBTQ+ community.
Petition Asked Hallmark To Guard Against Homophobia
A petition was circulated asking that the channel update their policies as they continue to make content that features same-sex couples. The petition stated that Hallmark has a responsibility to make sure their brand is aligned with these stories.
“We can clearly see that the network is doing work to address many of these comments when they arise, but the number of comments is significant and the non-specific comments are likely more difficult to address outright,” Hillary Kovacs, who started the petition, wrote.
She continued, “We as fans engage with these comments because we are aligned with the network’s stance that it should reflect the stories and identities of the community. As with the environment around previous releases, however, the efforts taken by fans to address these comments is taxing on the fans themselves and not our responsibility.”
Kovacs also asked that Hallmark prohibit any transphobic comments, which is still not part of their code of conduct. “This would be reflective of what the network has stated, but would move towards explicitly communicating the valuing of queer lives and experiences,” Kovacs continued. “It would also confirm to all who engage with the social media pages that they cannot share content which reflects prejudice against queer folks.”
Hallmark’s Updated Code Of Conduct
The network listened to the petitioners and has updated their code of conduct for users of their website and social media platforms. The new code states that users cannot “post or transmit any content or message that is…homophobic” or “engage in rude…harassing…hateful, [or] threatening behavior.” Hallmark’s updated code of conduct is a move in the right direction for the network as they attempt to diversify their movies and TV shows.