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Alternative Press in LGB Community

 

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Technology/ Media and Sexuality
Over the course of history, we continue to see in increase in use of technology till the point we are at now where just about everyone has media access. If you’re in a room with other people as you are reading this, look around. If not, picture yourself in a mall or any public place and look around. I can guarantee majority of these civilians are currently holding a smart phone or staring into the screen of their laptops. Think about how easily it is to access any sort of social media and create your own post or explore thousands of other peoples. The media is a very powerful thing because it has the ability to control society or give a person the voice to say whatever they want to. In more so recent years, there is much to be said about people’s sexuality. In this article, I will discuss the positive and negative effects that media has involving people’s sexualities.

Media Ethics
The ethics of sexual shame has to deal with in simpler terms “sexual shame”. This term refers to someone who has thoughts or fantasies about sexual activity who feels guilty for having such ideas. The ethical aspect is then- Is this wrong for someone to have such thoughts? Everyone is obligated to their own opinion to this question, but most people would say this is not wrong. For the intentions of my writing, we are speaking of shaming towards fantasizing having relations with someone of the same sex. Does this change the answer to the question? You may be surprised to find a decent amount of people find this unacceptable. Another way of sexual shame besides one’s own thoughts is the opinions from others. In present day, it’s easy to create content that insults someone for their sexual orientation or who they associate with. Unfortunately, we see this negativity in the media all the time.

Sexual Orientation
The main concern in the point I am trying to convey Is that gays, lesbians, and bisexuals get negative responses for the way they appear and who they are sexually interested in. In order to understand the issues, you must first understand the basic concepts. The word gay refers to homosexual males. On the other hand, the term lesbian references women who are homosexual. A bisexual being means one is not exclusive to a particular gender and have interests or relations with both men and women.

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Statistics
An article about bullying called “Gay Bullying Statistics” shares stats that go to show how big of a crises bullying is in the gay community which mainly stems through media. It states around 30 percent of all completed suicides are related to confusion on one’s sexual identity. Students who are gay, bisexual, lesbian or transgender are five times more likely to miss school because they are scared and threatened of being bullied by student who don’t accept them for who they are. People use online websites to create posts or spread rumors about people and have a harder time saying it to a targets face. This is where media can be such a dangerous thing because anyone can type something and send it directly to someone or post it for the public.

LGB Morals in Media
Having morals means your able to identify what is right from wrong in what society deems as acceptable. Someone’s morality is what they personally believe to be right from wrong. There are fine lines to determining what is right from wrong. For example, in media, it is acceptable to post something advertising an event say for gay pride. This is their legal right in the first amendment to express their desire to promote and support an event. On the other hand, someone who is homophobic would morally find it acceptable to harass someone who posts such an advertisement. At the same time, people who make up the homosexual community would morally disagree with the hate they receive.

Positive and Negative Impacts

Social media can be both a positive and negative. First, it can be positive because it can be used for people to share stories to their friends and family to show they are coming out or their journey in coming out and accepting who they are. When coming out, it is hard to share because you may think of the many people who will judge you or think of you differently. It is a positive because when one person shares such stories it can lead to support from friends and family and it can even spread viral and impact other LGB members who are afraid to come back. There are many instances where once a post becomes viewed about how great their lives have become since they have been open about themselves others may step out into the light and share their own story. From the other stance, it can also have a negative impact. People who disagree with a post being shared obviously have the ability to comment whatever they want which can lead to bullying which can lead to self-doubt, lack of confidence and in serious cases suicide.

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Classifications
Someone who is masculine can be described as a person who portrays the actions and behavior of a man. This term in the LGB community normally refers to a woman who has manly features and acts as if she is a male. On the opposing end, acting feminine means that someone acts in very girl like manners to a typical gentle, fragile girl who speaks and may even appear to be a woman. This term in this specific community typically describes men in a gay relationship. This can be seen in photos through social media or even in captions.

Other Forms of Media
Media can also stray from social media and can include newspapers, magazines, radio or books. Newspapers radio and books are clearly less common now a days but things such as magazines are still a common trend. There are different magazines designated to the gay community. The most common magazines are OUT, The Advocate, Instinct Magazine, Pink Magazine, and more. All these magazines have over 100,000 subscribers that keep up with the latest news and stories through magazines. Seeing the people on the magazines who are open about their sexuality and actually proud to express it do so in magazines is inspiring for other members in the community. This is positive because almost all magazines dealing with people talk about relationships between a male and a female. It is important to show that the LGB community in fact does exist and that its okay to be apart of. When hearing these stories, if someone is scared to come forward about their sexuality, they may read a story and make a personal connection that gives them courage to speak up for themselves and what they believe in.

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About The Author

Amanda Baxter

My name is Amanda Baxter. I am a sophomore at The University of Tampa. I am a student athlete on my schools tennis team. I also am a communications major and enjoy writing. Please enjoy my articles!

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