Study Reveals Critical Role LGBTQ Representation in the Media and Celebrity Opinion Play in Shifting Attitudes More Positively

MANILA, 7 JUNE, 2018 – MTV, Logo and Viacom, in partnership with RIWI Corp., The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association (ILGA), and Advocacy and Services for LGBT Elders (SAGE) partnered for a second year to poll over 100,000 respondents from 77 countries inclusive of the Philippines, on their attitudes toward LGBTQ people and issues.


Initial findings show that global attitudes towards the LGBTQ community have become more favorable over the past five years and global support for marriage equality is on the rise, but there is still a long way to go to reach full equality. The report, based on the ILGA-RIWI Global Attitudes Survey on Sexual, Gender, and Sex Minorities, in partnership with Viacom, Logo, and SAGE, underscores an important pathway to equality is through media representation. Respondents cite that seeing LGBT people in TV and film has just as much of a positive impact on attitudes as personally knowing someone who identifies as LGBTQ.


“It’s clear that media representation is critical in shifting attitudes more favorably towards the LGBTQ community,” said Pamela Post, SVP of Original Programming, MTV, VH1 and Logo. “All of our networks, MTV, VH1 and Logo, now more than ever remain committed to elevating the stories of LGBTQ people from all backgrounds.”


“These findings underscore the importance of reflecting our audience’s stories across Viacom’s content portfolio,” said Christian Kurz, Senior Vice President of Global Consumer Insights, Viacom. “Media representation plays an important role in shaping people’s perceptions and attitudes globally, and telling inclusive stories remains a priority for all our brands and screens.”


Top-line takeaways:


Global perceptions of the LGBTQ community are improving

·         Global support for legalization of same-sex marriage was up five percentage points from 2016 to 2017 (38 percent in 2017 vs. 33 percent in 2016)

·         1 in 3 people around the world say their feelings toward LGBT people have become more favorable in the last five years

·         Respondents in the Philippines who are attracted to the same sex are twice as likely to say that attitudes towards sexual diversity in their country are improving, as opposed to worsening


Knowing someone makes a difference

·         44 percent of people globally report knowing someone who is attracted to the same sex. This is higher in the Philippines where 70 percent know someone who is attracted to the same sex.


·         Globally, respondents who know someone attracted to the same sex are:

o   Over twice as likely to support the legalization of same sex marriage

o   Twice as likely to have had a more favorable shift in attitude towards LGBTQ people in last five years

o   Almost 1.5 times more likely to agree that “human rights should be applied to everyone regardless of whom they feel attracted to or the gender they identify with” (know: 76 percent, don’t know: 53 percent)

o   Nearly twice more likely to agree that “equal rights and protections should be applied to everyone including people who are romantically or sexually attracted to people of the same sex” (know: 70 percent, don’t know 44 percent)


Media representation matters as much as knowing someone

·         Seeing LGBTQ people in TV and Film has just as much of a positive impact on attitudes as knowing someone personally who is attracted to the same sex

·         For people who DON’T KNOW someone attracted to the same sex, 1 in 4 say media representation has most contributed to their feelings becoming more favorable—the highest among all contributing factors

·         1 in 4 agree, “I would be more likely to accept LGBT people if my favorite celebrity did too”


But there is still progress to be made

·         Nearly 40 percent of LGB people still face rejection or disapproval from family members upon coming out, although the figure is lower at 27 percent in the Philippines

·         40 percent of LGB people have experienced at least mild workplace discrimination because of their same-sex attraction but this is also lower in the Philippines (32 percent)



Methodology: RIWI Corp. (CSE: RIW) is a global survey-technology and sentiment-analysis firm that gathers citizen and consumer opinion data in all countries. RIWI technology allows for the rapid capture and assessment of large samples of broad, truly random opinion data by delivering anonymous opt-in surveys to randomized Web users, ensuring that the exposed survey audiences are representative of the Web-using geography of interest. No personally identifiable information is collected, stored, or transferred. Participation in any RIWI survey is voluntary and anonymous. In this study, all country-specific translations were reviewed and edited by local-area LGBTI human rights experts recommended by ILGA. More detail on the global RIWI survey system, may be found here: RIWI Corp. is listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange (CSE) under the symbol RIW.





About MTV 

MTV is the world’s biggest youth entertainment brand. With a global reach of nearly 785 million households, MTV is the cultural home of the millennial generation, music fans and artists, and a pioneer in creating innovative programming for young people. MTV reflects and creates pop culture with its award-winning content built around compelling storytelling, music discovery and activism across TV, online and mobile. Outside of the United States, MTV is part of Viacom International Media Networks, a division of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA), one of the world’s leading creators of programming and content across all platforms. For more information about MTV in Asia, visit



About Logo

Logo is a leading entertainment brand inspired by the LGBT community and reflects the creative class across television, digital and social platforms.  Logo features one-of-a-kind personalities, shows, specials, and unique stories.  Logo is part of Viacom’s Music & Entertainment Group including VH1, MTV, MTV2, Comedy Central and Spike.



Viacom International Media Networks

Yvette Yeo, Senior Manager, Southeast Asia


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