“South Carolina is So Gay”

A state employee has resigned and officials have disavowed an international advertising campaign that led to calls for an investigation of tourism posters proclaiming “South Carolina is so gay.”

The campaign, which plastered the London subway with posters advertising the charms of South Carolina and five major U.S. cities to gay European tourists, landed with a resounding thud in South Carolina, where the issue of gay rights has long been a political flashpoint. >>Full Story

Thoughts// We’ve been scratching our heads on this one. Despite whatever you think of the creative, the tag line, or how this was allegedly only approved by “a low level staffer”, this story nevertheless raises some interesting questions about the precarious nature of being a state tourism agency.

With gay travel estimated to be a $64.5 billion market by the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association, how does a state tourism agency legitimately—using public funds—communicate to this audience in a meaningful way?

Once a decision has been made to pursue the gay tourism market, how do you sustain and defend the decision?

Tell us what you think! We’d love to hear from you on this one.

Comment? @travel2dot0 or email.