The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) is the group that organizes and votes on all Golden Globe awards every year. After an investigation performed by the Los Angeles Times, the HFPA has been accused of “ethical lapses and of failing to maintain a sufficiently diverse membership.”
The LA Times claims that the nonprofit body of individuals paid certain members large sums of money for serving on committees and watching films meanwhile these members for the most part have only had careers in journalism, not television. The investigation showed these individuals were paid up to $2 million for their services.
The HFPA recently responded to the LA Times accusations, claiming that their “compensation decisions are based on an evaluation of compensation practices by similar nonprofit organizations and market rates for such services.”
“The suggestion that many of our members are not serious journalists is outdated and unfair, the organisation has a robust admissions and reaccreditation process and our members write for some of the most reputable publications in the world,” said a representative for the HFPA.
The HFPA has been under fire in the past for similar reasons as well. Their award making process has often been criticised as erratic with constant insider claims that voters on the awards are rewarded with “hospitality in the form of gifts and in-person events with industry stars.”
This year’s Golden Globe awards have been riddled with controversy after Michaela Coel’s critically acclaimed series ‘I May Destroy You’ received no nominations but the famously terrible Netflix original ‘Emily In Paris’ did. Additionally, Sia’s controversial feature film ‘Music’ was nominated despite the fact that it’s received a slew of criticism regarding its misrepresentation and “caricature-like” adaptation of individuals with autism.
According to the LA Times, “while the 87-strong HFPA’s ranks include a number of people of color, there are no black members. A representative of the group said the HFPA is aware of the issue and is ‘committed to addressing’ it. The representative also said that the perception that many members are not serious journalists is ‘outdated and unfair, the organisation has a robust admissions and reaccreditation process and that its members write for some of the most reputable publications in the world.’”
The lack of Black members in the HFPA may be an issue that’s “being addressed” internally, however, for many it’s a “too little too late” situation. The fact that it’s 2021 and some of the nation’s largest corporations, agencies, organizations, etc. still don’t have a substantial amount of Black members, and people of color in general, is seen as unacceptable for most, especially considering a majority of these large bodies are only now hiring people of color and Black people after receiving backlash from the general public and Black Lives Matter movement, not because they’re actually committed to promoting diversity.
Eric Mastrota is a Contributing Editor at The National Digest based in New York. A graduate of SUNY New Paltz, he reports on world news, culture, and lifestyle. You can reach him at email@example.com.