- Troye Sivan called a phone interview he did with New Zealand LGBTQ+ magazine Express invasive and inappropriate after the interviewer asked: “Top or Bottom?”
- An editorial by Out Magazine then called Sivan hypocritical for the comments, saying Sivan has openly discussed sexual themes in his latest album.
- Sivan later criticized the editorial by arguing that talking about “sex in my music on my terms” does not “give anyone a pass on basic manners and allow them to ask about the ins and outs of what i do in bed.”
Sivan’s Interview With Express
Troye Sivan criticized an interviewer who asked him about his preferred sexual position, calling the question “invasive.”
In a phone interview with LGBTQ+ New Zealand magazine Express, Matt Fistonich plays a lightning round with the singer, ending the interview by asking, “Top or bottom?” in relation to Sivan’s sexual position with his boyfriend, Jacob Bixenman.
Sivan follows by answering, “Ooo… definitely passing!”
Sivan then shared a tweet of the interview from a fan, expressing his disdain for the question.
“I thought about asking the interviewer about his absolute fave sex position after that last question,” Sivan said in a tweet, “but then i remembered how wildly invasive, strange and innapropriate that would be. Didn’t stop him though!”
“Next time I’ll just do a Twitter q&a,” Sivan continued.
Fistonich also asked Sivan earlier in the interview whether Bixenman would give Sivan a “hall pass” for Shawn Mendes, who is straight. A “hall pass” is an agreement some couples make allowing one partner to be intimate with certain people.
Sivan previously stated his celebrity crush was Mendes in an interview with Vogue for “73 Questions with Troye Sivan.”
Sivan then goes on to say that if the opportunity presented itself, he would not act on it even if he had permission from Bixenman.
“But the strange thing is when you end up meeting your hall pass, it ends up becoming very real very quickly and suddenly you’re like, ‘no, no, never mind, no hall passes,” Sivan said in the interview.
Fistonich then continues, asking, “So when you met Shawn Mendes nothing got too steamy?”
“No, no, not at all!” Sivan answered.
In an editors note, the magazine states “Matt threw some pretty outrageous questions at Troye, but Sivan took it all in his stride.”
The magazine has also disabled Instagram comments for their post on the story.
Reaction to the Interview
Following the interview, many online expressed their concern over the nature of Fistonich’s sexual questions, with a major concern being the nature of Sivan’s sexuality in relation to the questions about his private life.
Those people argued straight artists do not face the same sort of hyper-sexual questions that LGBTQ+ artists are asked.
An editorial from Out Magazine, however, described Sivan as “hypocritical,” pointing to the sexual imagery presented throughout Sivan’s album, Bloom.
“Do queer journalists have to adhere to the same respectability politics as straight ones?” the opinion piece reads. “It’s 2019, talking about anal sex shouldn’t be taboo, especially in queer media.”
Regarding the album, Sivan has been open with discussing its more sexual themes — including a now-deleted tweet where he used the hashtag #BopsBoutBottoming.
“I just wanted to be as real as possible about it and for me, that’s a really tender and sweet experience,” he said in an interview with Paper Magazine. “I wanted to explore it in that perspective, and ultimately I was writing a love song from my experience. I wanted it to be sweet and candor and have all that stuff with fear and curiosity — everything packed in there.”
Sivan Challenges Out Editorial
Thursday, Sivan responded to the op-ed on Twitter, saying it was “disappointing” to see the LGBTQ+ magazine “miss the mark so much on the reporting of this.”
Sivan then posted a series of tweets explaining both his album and its relation to sex, including a rebuke of Out’s assertion “he wrote a whole ass album about bottoming.”
“Firstly, Bloom is about love,” Sivan said. “I said that in every single interview i did about the album. Suggesting that i made the entire album about bottoming is over sexualising me + my work, and is reductive.”
“I speak about sex in my music on my terms, when I’m in control, and writing music that is going to be close to my heart forever,” Sivan continued. “That does not open the flood gates + give anyone a pass on basic manners and allow them to ask about the ins and outs of what i do in bed.”
Firstly, Bloom is an album about love. I said that in every single interview i did about the album. Suggesting that i made the entire album about bottoming is over sexualising me + my work, and is reductive— troye (@troyesivan) August 29, 2019
I speak about sex in my music on my terms, when I’m in control, and writing music that is going to be close to my heart forever. That does not open the flood gates + give anyone a pass on basic manners and allow them to ask about the ins and outs of what i do in bed— troye (@troyesivan) August 29, 2019
Sivan then echoed many of the sentiments his fans expressed over what they called a divide between the way straight and LGBTQ+ people are seen in media.
“I highly doubt anyone would ask any of my straight peers explicit questions about who does what to who in their relationship, no matter the content of their music,” Sivan said.
I highly doubt anyone would ask any of my straight peers explicit questions about who does what to who in their relationship, no matter the content of their music. I don’t think artists should have to expect to be asked about that when they show up to work in the morning— troye (@troyesivan) August 29, 2019
There’s no shame in anal sex or any kind of sex – i just don’t want to talk about it over the phone to a complete stranger— troye (@troyesivan) August 29, 2019
Since Sivan’s series of tweets, Out has removed the comments many viewed as controversial.
“This piece has been updated since its original publish time due to the editorial team’s determination that it did not meet our standards,” an edit to the article now reads. “We have condensed and revised the piece accordingly.
The singer ended his message by liking a tweet that read, “i’m not a top or a bottom. i’m just tired.”
See what others are saying: (INSIDER) (Hollywood Life) (PopCrush)
Joe Rogan Holds Spot As Top Podcaster on Spotify in 2022
Earlier this year, some threatened to boycott the platform over Rogan and the health misinformation he shared on his show.
For the third year in a row, “The Joe Rogan Experience” was the number one podcast on Spotify, the company revealed in its yearly “Wrapped” feature on Wednesday.
“The Joe Rogan Experience” became exclusive to Spotify in 2020 after the host signed a lucrative deal with the audio streaming platform. “Call Her Daddy” by Alex Cooper, also a Spotify exclusive, followed Rogan on the charts. “Anything Goes With Emma Chamberlain,” which will become exclusive to the service next year, came in third.
Rogan’s podcast has made several headlines over the last year as the podcaster faced backlash from medical professionals and major musicians for touting COVID-19 misinformation. Niel Young asked to have his music removed from Spotify in protest of the company’s deal with Rogan, and several other artists soon followed.
Just a few days later, several clips resurfaced of Rogan using a racial slur. Many called to boycott Spotify for platforming Rogan, but his popularity did not seem to fade by the year’s end.
There are over four million podcasts available to stream on Spotify and over the last year, the platform has expanded into new markets.
It also has started launching podcasts from several high-profile figures, including Kim Kardashian’s “The System,” and Meghan Markle’s “Archetypes.” Both of those debuted mid-year and did not crack the annual top-five list.
Comedian Gives David Beckham Ultimatum: Exit Role at Qatar World Cup Or £10K in Donations Gets Shredded
“Not just the money, but also your status as a gay icon will be shredded,” Joe Lycett said in a video.
Pressure on Beckham
Comedian Joe Lycett posted a video on Sunday saying he would shred £10,000 if soccer star David Beckham does not pull out of his deal to be an ambassador for the Qatar World Cup.
Ahead of the event, which kicks off on Nov. 20, many have been raising concerns about human rights abuses in Qatar. The country criminalizes homosexuality, and it can be punishable by death.
Beckham’s deal to represent the country was reportedly worth £10 million, and many are frustrated that the athlete took such a big check from a country with known anti-LGBTQ laws. In his video, Lycett noted that Beckham has been openly supportive of his gay fans and was the first premiere footballer to do a photoshoot with a gay magazine.
In an attempt to get Beckham to bow out of his role, Lycett, who is pansexual, offered an ultimatum.
“If you end your relationship with Qatar, I’ll donate this £10,000 of my own money, that’s a grand for every million you’re reportedly getting, to charities that support queer people in football,” he stated. “However, if you do not, at midday next Sunday, I will throw this money into a shredder.”
“Not just the money, but also your status as a gay icon will be shredded.”
Beckham’s Reputation “Shredded”
Lycett said he would livestream the money shredding if that’s what the situation comes to. If Beckham does not back out of the World Cup, Lycett noted he will be forced to “commit what might be a crime,” as destroying legal tender is against the law in the U.K.
“Although even then, I reckon I’ll get off more lightly than I would if I got caught whacking off a lad in Doha,” Lycett quipped.
Lycett then linked to a website titled https://benderslikebeckham.com/, which includes a written version of his message, as well as a countdown to when he will either shred the cash or send it to a non-profit.
Lycett is not the only U.K star to raise concerns about issues in Qatar. Singer Dua Lipa shut down speculation that she would be performing at the World Cup over the weekend by saying she has no intentions to visit the country until “it has fulfilled all the human rights pledges it made when it won the right to host” the event.
Other stars, however, including BTS’s Jung Kook, are slated to take the stage.
See what others are saying: (CNN) (The Hollywood Reporter) (BBC News)
Federal Judge Dismisses Dave Portnoy’s Lawsuit Against Insider
The online personality called the decision “disappointing” but not “overly surprising.”
A federal judge in Massachusetts dismissed a defamation lawsuit Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy filed against Business Insider, several outlets reported on Monday.
According to a report from The Washington Post, Chief Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV decided that Portnoy did not successfully prove that the news outlet acted with “actual malice” or “reckless disregard for the truth” when it published two articles about his sexual relationships.
The first article, published in Nov. 2021, detailed stories from women who said they had “violent” and traumatizing sex with Portnoy. A second piece was published in Feb. 2022 and includes sources who said Portnoy filmed sexual encounters without consent.
Portnoy has repeatedly denied the allegations and maintained that the sexual encounters were consensual and positive. He sued Insider in February following the publication of the second article.
Per The Post, Saylor tossed the complaint because it did “not allege that Insider’s anonymous sources were fake, or that the articles misrepresented what the women told [Insider’s reporters].”
“Furthermore, plaintiff admits that Insider investigated its first article for months, requested an interview with him, sought his comment before publication, included his denials, and hyperlinked to his news conference and his lawyer’s full denial letter,” the judge’s decision continued.
Saylor also noted that Insider corroborated their sources’ claims with photos, texts, medical reports, receipts, and accounts from their friends.
While Portnoy argued that these stories were an invasion of privacy as they pertained to his private sex life and the women involved were not his employees, Insider held that their claims were relevant.
“When a rich, famous, and powerful person uses their power in a way that is harmful to other people, it is newsworthy,” Nicholas Carlson, Insider’s Global Editor-in-Chief, previously wrote in an editor’s note.
Saylor largely agreed with that, saying that issues of consent and power are part of “legitimate public interest,” including in instances that arise outside “the employment context.”
An Insider spokesperson told The Post that the outlet is “pleased and gratified that the judge dismissed his complaint.”
“We knew from the start that our reporting was careful, fair, and accurate, but it’s gratifying to see that validated in court,” Julia Black, one of the reporters named in the lawsuit, tweeted in response to the news.
For his part, however, Portnoy has criticized the judge’s decision, calling it “disappointing” but not “overly surprising.”
“Every single lawyer said it was an uphill battle, every legal expert said it was an uphill battle, that it’s almost impossible for a public figure to prove defamation,” he said in a video posted to Twitter. “The laws are stacked against me.”
Portnoy said that he turned in texts and other evidence he believed would prove the sexual encounters were positive but claimed “the judge didn’t even really look at the evidence.”
He later read an excerpt from the judge’s decision that said Portnoy “can’t seek to prove actual malice by challenging statements that defendants did not publish.”
“In other words: Business Insider did not publish any of my shit, I can’t talk about it, it’s not part of the case,” Portnoy explained. “It’s inadmissible.”
He said he could appeal the decision if he wanted, but added he was not optimistic about how that would turn out for him. He floated the idea of suing the sources themselves, noting he thinks he would stand a better chance in such a case.