Graham Norton warned over lesbian joke

Jessica Geen September 28, 2009
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Gay TV presenter Graham Norton and his production team received a warning over a lesbian joke he made on his show in March.

One viewer complained about the comment, which he made while Gavin and Stacey star Ruth Jones was a guest on his chatshow.

Referring to an image of a woman on a patent application, Norton said: “I don’t know why they’ve got some strange lesbian to be the model.”

Jones replied: “She may not be a lesbian, come on now.”

She added that it was wrong to judge people on their looks and asked Norton: “What does a lesbian look like?”

“That,” Norton answered, before adding: “Anyway, there’s nothing wrong with being a lesbian.”

The BBC’s Editorial Complaints Unit said: “Although the initial references might have been inoffensive if considered on their own, they prompted an exchange with one of the programme’s guests which gave the references the appearance of perpetuating or reinforcing a potentially offensive stereotype.

“The programme team were reminded of the need to avoid any possibility of being seen to endorse offensive sexual stereotypes.”

Last week, 27 complaints were received by Ofcom over a comment made by gay illusionist Derren Brown.

During a trick in which he appeared to predict the lottery, Brown said he was not using the bonus ball and that it was “for women and gays”.

An Ofcom spokesman told PinkNews.co.uk: “We have received complaints but aren’t currently investigating the comments.”

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