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Broadway Bares... just not on this blog


Yesterday I was contacted by a representative of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS who asked me to remove a post I made about the event Broadway Bares. I was told they "work very hard to police the content from BROADWAY BARES which appears online to protect the associations [sic] made this event." I emailed a reply to the representative and asked if the issue was with the pictures I posted (the majority of which were from BroadwayWorld) or my site specifically. I was told, "It is the site." Now it probably doesn't surprise you that I get asked to remove content all the time, and after almost 5 years of running this site I generally comply without question. However, in this case I was curious: Why would an organization that I've posted about for over 2 years suddenly have an issue with me writing about their event on my site?

Let me be clear. I completely respect and support everything that Broadway Bares & BC/EFA do for people living with HIV/AIDS. I have personally supported the organization financially. I have highly recommended the Broadway Bares: Backstage Pass book and some of you may have purchased the book after seeing it posted here. I continue to feel strongly about the goodness of their efforts. Please visit their website & web store and support them if you'd like. It's a great cause.

I guess the real issue is who decides who can post what on their website?

It disturbs me that an organization would try to dictate who can review their event. I never implied in my write up that anyone got fully naked during the production, but during the back-and-forth on this, the representative seemed to think that, by simply being on my site, the nudity was implied. To me, it seems like an event named "Strip-Opoly" would attract the same audience that my site caters to. Maybe the producers just don't want to admit it?

Later in our exchange, the representative flopped and said the posted photos were the real issue, saying he was concerned about the impact on the career of the dancers. Is having identical pictures posted on a Broadway website and Dudetube a career killer? Are you readers not savvy enough to understand the context under which the photos were taken? By the way, I did not identify any of the performers in the photos (unlike the majority of "mainstream" websites). I'm upset that an organization would actively promote an event based on sexuality, and then become outraged when a sexual website reports on it. The representative told me that Broadway Bares "is sexy but clever." Maybe Dudetube and sites like it aren't clever enough to talk about it?

Out of respect for the organization I removed the post as requested. However, there are larger issues at play here. Who decides what content is appropriate for which websites? Will websites be intimidated and silenced or can sexuality be accepted as a part of our community? I think back 20 years ago and wonder how many people told the founders of Broadway Bares that what they were doing was inappropriate. I wonder how they responded?

Comments (37)


I am always amazed by what people consider inappropriate to what they consider appropriate. And to not sound judgmental EVEN within myself! This is simply one persons point of view and has nothing to do with your site. Question?.....how de he/she find the Dudetube? You don't just meander over here unless you were looking for something in particular.......


I have seen Broadway Bares a number of times and have enjoyed it.

I also enjoy Dude Tube very much, and as mentioned by others, not just for the nude photos. The commentary, both from the site, and from the viewers, is always interesting.

And I agree with the majority of the commenters here on this topic. The representative of the Broadway Bares organization is being a big hypocrite.

For all of it's professionalism and polish, Broadway Bares is still, and is heavily advertised as, a "strip show". It's about the flash and the great bodies and the "skin". (And also like everyone else, I acknowledge that the money is for a very good cause).

It's too bad that they took the position they did.


The law is pretty clear. You can say whatever you want. You can publish anything you want, within the law respecting copyright, etc. Lacking a lawyer is a little bit of a problem, intimidation-wise.
However, when in the right, I'd go for the "fuck 'em" approach.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.[


You guys might also want to check out this article from The Sword http://is.gd/dlQZZ where a Broadway Cares representative is quoted as saying, "Publicity isn't worth anything after the fact."


Hey Guys: I've been thinking about this a lot over the last 3 days and as much as I might be upset with BC/EFA, I keep thinking about the broader implications. Hypothetically say Zach Efron's people email me and say they don't want a picture of him on my site? Or to take it a step further, email a blog like Queerty and say they don't want a photo of him on a gay site. Or ask a site like ONTD to remove a post because it isn't flattering. It just seems like a very slippery slope and if you play it out to its logical conclusion it's very troubling. Who should make these decisions and who should draw these lines?

Chase Morgan Taggert:

Fuck 'em

randy b:

You'd think Tom Viola would have something more important to do with his time than make this petty request.

But, all you people that are so quick to withdraw support of this well meaning benefit just because of his lame request are equally lame.


So Broadway Bares would rather not associate itself with a site that caters to gay men. I'll be sure and remember that when tickets go on sale next year, and just make a donation to GMHC or some similar charity.


If you decide to dance in a Broadway Bares show and STRIP FOR MONEY! You shouldn't get upset when your pictures end up all over the internet. Like most of you I support what Broadway Beat does and I'm happy a show like Broadway Bares can be produced every year. They could do SO MUCH MORE if they weren't so "hush hush" about the whole thing and made it available on DVD or the internet. I have seen only 1 show and if it were made available to a larger gay audience they would make MILLIONS! Lots of fun. It seems unfair and unjust that the show be confined to a few rich NYC gays instead of all of us.


I agree with what I've read from the others. This is a bunch of elitist BS. Viola's promoting his cause with the exact same desires that brings guys here--then looking down his self-important nose at those desires. What's next, the "Fucking for Chastity" fundraiser?

I think we do need to call Tom out on this hypocrisy and not support his foundation anymore. I honestly don't believe that education, awareness-raising, and treatment of STIs can be effective if they are served up in a framework that is inherently sex-negative, especially if it's covertly so.

That Tom chose to yank free advertising from a site that caters to his alleged target audience shows that he is not nearly as committed to getting the word out as he is to riding the coattails of others' misfortune as his fashionably chic cause. I've no time for that type, and there are other charities that are more worthy of my money and time.


Matt, I think you absolutely took the high road in removing the post. For whatever reason, brand management or because the legit dancers from broadway bares are afraid to be thought of as porn stars even though it is arguable that for that night in the event they sort of are, it was a sensitive issue to the Bares folks. I do think Bares is selling dudetube and its readership short by thinking we couldn't distinguish between a charity event of broadway dancers and porn any more than we can distinguish between porn and comics or tv or music videos but again there was a short sighted reaction that you responded to respectfully. I urge you not to abandon support of such a great organization as BC/EFA. And I say as I have for years that your site is awesome.


Hm. It's an interesting back and forth. On the one hand, it's understandable that an organization would want to restrict any perceived association with pornographic sites - having more to do with the possible reaction from others than the pornographic content itself. On the other hand, that doesn't really work as an argument from a group that utilizes sexual stimulation to raise money.

In a few years I have a feeling the landscape of free speech on the internet is going to be drastically different. If you post a disparaging comment about a corporation they'll have the right to force you to remove it. If you post a music review that doesn't cast the artist in a positive light, you'll be forced to post a retraction. If you post pictures of nearly naked guys who are exploiting people for an admittedly good cause on a blog that, among other things, posts pornographic pics and videos you'll have to deal with condescension from a couple of hypocrites.

Selling sex is selling sex, regardless of whether you're profiting from two guys fucking or raising money from two guys suggestively dancing in their underwear. Get over yourselves.


Oh yes, THIS is all about ART and being CLEVER.

It is in no way blatantly homo-erotic and borderline hardcore and thus can not appear on a "pornographic' blog


Sadly, Mr Viola and by consequence, no part of Broadway Cares, is either clever or artful nor do they "CARE".

Shame on the entire organization for being a bunch of self-effacing, pompous, self-loathing homos.



Little good things sometimes turn into big good things. Then they get lawyers and then they get uppity. Then the whole thing can come crumbling down. When the purity and goodness is overshadowed by hypocrisy and greed and power, the original good thing often ceases to be a priority. Somebody at BC/EFA needs to evaluate what they've become. Before it's too late.


I truly see both sides. Keep in mind that B/B is only doing due diligence when it comes to brand management. I hope no one will think twice about supporting such a worthy cause simply because of a business decision the B/B organization made. And I continue to be a huge Dudetube fan, too.



You'd think one with your position would know correct grammer. It's your understanding, not you're understanding.

I've been to Broadway Bares for the past 15 years and am seriously reconsidering my judgement in supporting your organization.

I read something really interesting the other day, and honestly it does not matter what actor said it, it rings so true and should cause pause for thought....so hey Tom you better be listening and I invite you to visit my blog to read what I wrote...take it to heart dude...

Now here is what that actor said, and works great to one of the comments that was stated by the "representative."

The actor said, "You play a gay character and everyone believes you are gay and thinks that you are really gay in your personal life, yet if you play a serial killer no one thinks you are really a serial killer"

OK so again I say it - REALLY?

Tom, you had an extended audience that was educated on your cause and you wanted to shut it down.

Shame on YOU!

Oh wait, right sorry in America homosexuals are still second class citizens when it comes to legal standing....ya it all makes sense now....

Um here is a solution - FIX IT!

David Regan:

Please post the persons email so we may give them direct feedback. I also have supported their cause and will no longer...I read this for the diverse content!!!


What a bunch of snobs!


Shame on Broadway Bares. Their opinion that "Our" nudity is above or too good for a site like DudeTube is a joke. I appreciate that DudeTube informs its viewers all on all things "Gay". I check Dudetube daily and I love it. Kuddos for taking the high road, but we can't and shouldn't support anyone who thinks their idea of sexuality is the only acceptable sexuality, and that it is above or better than a particular group. We call those people Republicans, and if they only want Repulbicans to support their cause, well good luck with that! Keep up the good work DudeTube. I support you fully!!


While I agree with you, I understand their point. There is a very real risk with things like this that someone sees a picture from the event and claims their picture was "on a pornographic website", implying that they were performing in pornography. It completely ignores the context of the site and the post in particular, but that kind of thing happens all the time in the media. It's completely wrong, but it's reality.

I doubt that I am the only HIV survivor who comes to this site for "safe sex" stimulation. Your original post tastefully praised the organization for putting on a tasteless exhibition in order to raise money for a good cause. My question is does Mr. Viola receive a salary for being on the staff of the organization and exactly where does the money go?

I have lost a lover and far too many friends to this epidemic to put up with any more bureaucratic crappola from anyone. Furthermore, I personally think that a fundraiser called Broadway Bares with the theme "Strip-Opoly" cheapens the cause which for many is a painful and lonely way of life.

I agree with your decision to remove the post but I am very tired of being discriminated against by the Puritanical ethics that plague this nation and slowed research and humane response to this crisis.


"sexy but clever" - what an imperious load of elitist horseshit. Their naked is clever; your naked is not. Newsflash: naked is naked. And the emperor has no clothes.


If we in the gay community would ease up on cheapening ourselves with excessive sexualization of our gay culture, there would be no confusion about what can be posted where and what's appropriate and not. Why does a serious fundraiser for victims of HIV need semi-pornographic environment tagged as art for people to donate money to? Will people not donate to this organization if their performers don't show dick?

Boadway Bares needs a reality check. Don't sexualize your fundraisers but if you do, your content is very appropriate for entertaining sites like dudetube.


I stumbled upon your site a few years ago and check it daily for updates. The porn is wonderful, BUT I do not check back daily just for the porn links you add. I enjoy the posts you make regarding movies, events and celebrities much more than any of the porn you post. I hate to see this organization dictating what you can and cannot show on your website. I will continue to view your site, and if these organizations were smart, they would encourage you to post their information on this website. Your site definitely caters to me (an educated gay man) more than many similar sites out there. Keep up your excellent work. I appreciate it.


Wow a bad taste in my mouth exactly! I would think an organization such as Broadway Bares & BC/EFA would LOVE any type of promotion from ANY web site that would help promote such an otherwise good cause. Tom should be ashamed of himself and think about all those hands that feed his organization. I for one will move my donation to other needs this year. I hope Tom enjoys explaining why annual donations are down this year. Good Job Dude Tube Online.


I think that Broadway Bares has reached a point where it's less about the art and more about parading half-naked (or more) guys around on a stage so people can put money in their thong.

Seriously the pictures from this year alone make last year look really tame. I find it odd that they are are trying to censor this here when they are using sex to raise funds for AIDS/HIV. Talk about a mixed message.


Tom, you are the type of gay people I hate. You run a show with naked guys, YES NAKED, then get all pissy about it being posted on the web next to porn. Unfortunately I don't view your show as "art" nor do I think the minds behind it, used talent to attract people to the show. The fact is the performers are NAKED and you advertise it as so. I totally support the person who posted info about your crappy ass show. You should have a little more respect for people who give word of mouth for something that, in my opinion, didn't require much creativity at all. You just shoved NAKED guys on stage. Anywhore, I would tell the blogger on this site to post about your dumb broadway production but the less publicity you get the better.


Interesting - and well done for your balanced response but I think you were wrong to remove it. As you say there is an increasing amount of (attempted) censorship going on around the web, on forums etc which is totally contrary to the ethos of the net. You should have told them to stick it

But keep up the good work


I called Tom (@ Broadway Cares: (212) 840-0770) and left him a piece of my mind. I encourage others to do the same.


So...you mean to suggest that an event where more than half naked guys parade around "for a good cause" is somehow loftier than a site that discusses (fairly casually) porn and comic books? Unimpressed with the tenor of your implications, sir. If you wish Broadway Bares to be discussed on mainstream sites where...what, the viewership discusses the merit of their dancing as opposed to what the show seems to be generally about..taking sex and sexuality and making it positivivley connoted, then I suggest you get some christian conservatives together and frump the place up. On the whole, supressing the story here seems to be 100 percent against the spirit of Brodway Bares in the first place.


Hypocracy. Next thing you'll hear is that the objections stem from all the straight dancers not wanting Free promotion-- because they don't want people thinking they're gay, or that they're gay and also approve of gay porn.


I'm actually shocked and down right pissed off by their reaction. What a way to kill support for their organization and show.

I for one am canceling any plans to make trips to attend any shows. Additional I will drop any and all support to this organization Funds will be redistributed to other groups that don't bash the very people they purportedly support.

Wow. What has the world come to?

I understand why you took the article down. But you had a right to fight it, if you chose to do so. And I so agree with firstimpre55ion. It is Black and White. Take it down from all the websites the pics are on.

And from now on, dudetube, stop supporting them on your website. Yes, they are a great organization, but to me they have now left a bad taste in my mouth.

Remember, it is your website. You have a right to post what you want. Yes, "who decides who can post what on their website"?? That is the question.


Hey Tom Viola:

Maybe you and your superiors need to anti-target the gay community and discriminate against many of your dancers while you're at it considering that half of them are gay and out and proud? Yes, that's extreme, but like Matt stated, having a show called "Broadway Bares" and a theme titled "Stripopoly" begs to question, "Did you bring this on to yourselves?"

Are you policing any other sites Tom Viola other than Dudetube Online? If you take one down, you take them all down. It's black and white. So that's my challenge to you Tom Viola: if you are enforcing the removal of photos from Dudetube Online you need to enforce removal from EVERY website that contains any "damaging"/"offensive" links who are posting photos on their sites of your organization's event.

Or better yet Tom Viola, do NOT allow cameras into the event unless it's press and no close up shots of any of the performers where you can recognize their faces if you "care" about their careers that much.


Tom Viola:

Dear Matt: Thank you for all your past support. I very much appreciate your willingness to remove photos from the recent edition of BROADWAY BARES from DudeTube. There are indeed many photos from BARES on many internet sites, including the BC/EFA webpage. But when it does come to our attention, we cannot have pictures of our nearly naked dancers on a site that includes hard-core porn, as represented in the photos just to my right. I appreciate you're understanding.


Wow, for a group who you would think would be ultra-liberal at the least, this is a pretty conservative reaction. As you said, I think most people are smart enough to distinguish between a post about an Xtube video and an article detailing a charity fundraiser.

And honestly, even if people aren't smart enough, that's just unfortunate. Once the information and photos hit the airwaves (or internet waves, I guess) they become free reign for anyone. It's information they put out for public consumption, they have no right to decide who talks about it. It's not like it's proprietary information. It's like the New York Times running an article about a White House press conference and then demanding only certain people discuss it.

I understand why you took the article down, but I would definitely be behind you if you wanted to fight ... which, admittedly, doesn't mean a whole lot. Heh heh.

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