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Author Topic: Why Does the Web Revival Movement Attract a Large Queer/Trans Community?  (Read 2088 times)
Yaya
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« on: January 09, 2024 @633.29 »

Hello everyone,

I've been noticing that the web revival movement has significant number of queer and trans individuals actively involved. As someone who identifies with these communities, I got really interested in this. Why do we think this is?

From my perspective, one reason could be the search for community. Also the mainstream commercial web, much like the offline mainstream commercial world, can be unsafe and hostile to queer individuals, so people may more actively search for alternatives. This might drive the need to find safer, more inclusive spaces online. Also for those whose online life is separate/anonymous from their real life it could allow for a safe space in which to publicly identify one's gender/sexuality before "coming out", or if coming out irl is not an active (or safe) possibility.

What are your thoughts? Why do you think the web revival movement is particularly resonant among queer and trans users? It has definitely helped me find affinity and feel more comfortable in my identity. Any insights or personal experiences would be greatly appreciated!
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« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2024 @667.70 »

this will probably not be eloquently worded (im running on very little sleep) but imho it has to do with stuff like pinkwashing and corporate exploitation of queer spaces/pride movements.

the web revival, or what i've experienced of it, is based on escaping the corporate owned and dominated social media giants in favor of a community with direct communication. Our content and what we share here isn't subject to an 'algorithm' or filters, and is not made 'palatable' for whoever may be watching on mass sns. a lot of corporations will do for pride month, where they change their logos rainbow, then right back to normal on the first of july. They're not fooling anyone.

there's also the inescapable faux/performative activism on sites like instagram (at least in the us) that can be really tiring when you're a queer person who wants real, tangible change and legitimate community support. rather than just a temporary story post that designates an account as a "safe space for all".

Idk if this made sense, i hope you understood what i was getting at  :ohdear:
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devils
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« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2024 @671.32 »

I think the indie web scene attracts queer and trans people a lot because, besides the reasons you mentioned, it allows people to be truly themselves.

Think about it: the most individuality the majority of social media provides is changing your icon and header. The best there is when it comes to that is Tumblr, which allows you to have a custom theme, but even then it needs extensions for an optimal browsing experience and a lot of people there are... annoying, to be blunt. Not that any social media is immune to that...

Regardless, personal websites are appealing to the queer community for the same reason they're appealing to every «oddball»- from geeks to freaks to queers, we all just value our individuality because people tend to put us down because of it.
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« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2024 @673.10 »

it may have to do with the abolishment of algorithms that often stiffle and censor the shit out of queer people who aren't palatable enough for the big corporations or that they feel like they have to fit in with one of the 3 pre-made images of what a queer person is. web revival gives them the freedom to be themselves regardless of what companies think of such people.

this and the fact a ton of queer peeps are in tech field (i feel like i am the only one who lacks predispositions to be a tech lad) and then you have a lot of furries in tech... and the whole overlap between furries and queers, and so on and so on  :grin:
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starbreaker
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« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2024 @686.94 »

I've been noticing that the web revival movement has significant number of queer and trans individuals actively involved. As someone who identifies with these communities, I got really interested in this. Why do we think this is?

It probably doesn't help that mainstream platforms cater primarily to advertisers, and queer/trans people are only advertiser-friendly when they act like straights, so when they're too much themselves they get kicked out.
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« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2024 @781.31 »

boþ movements have very heavy overlap when it comes to þeir core philosophies, as þey are ultimately about þe haviŋ þe freedom to express who you are! þey also boþ prioritize love and friendship; a big part of þe web revival is creatiŋ spaces where people can genuinely connect wiþ eachoþer outside of þe central web, and a big part of beiŋ queer is findiŋ community wiþ oþer people, no matter how different þey are from yourself ^^

þere are definitely a lot more shared aspects i noticed but i'm not quite sure how to exactly articulate þem yet? but i do believe þere is a connection between þe web revival's pro-decentralization and how a decent amount of queer folk are anti-capitalist.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2024 @784.07 by sharpieBath » Logged

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larvapuppy
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« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2024 @786.74 »

In addition to what OP and some others have said... I think that as LGBT folks we are already somewhat ostracized and viewed as outside of the norm to the general public. This makes us more willing to explore and embrace hobbies/activities that are outside of the norm; if we already don't conform in one way why not go down our own path in some other ways. It also helped me to see that the space behaves very accepting and welcoming toward people like me. I probably would not have been as likely to join if I had seen as much hostility as in, say, an Instagram comment section or a Twitter thread.
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devils
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« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2024 @799.77 »

it may have to do with the abolishment of algorithms that often stiffle and censor the shit out of queer people who aren't palatable enough for the big corporations or that they feel like they have to fit in with one of the 3 pre-made images of what a queer person is. web revival gives them the freedom to be themselves regardless of what companies think of such people.

It probably doesn't help that mainstream platforms cater primarily to advertisers, and queer/trans people are only advertiser-friendly when they act like straights, so when they're too much themselves they get kicked out.

Both of you touched on the topic of censorship of queer people online, I'd just like to touch on that subject... it doesn't just affect queer people, of course, it's kind of why you see bigots with sites hosted on Neocities every once in a while- the lack of censorship allows one to be themselves, for better or for worse. It's still a lot better than social media actively promoting hateful rhetoric though, I'd argue it's easier to ignore a bigot with their own site than on a site that promotes their stuff endlessly (Twitter comes to mind, especially with its recent changes...).

It also helped me to see that the space behaves very accepting and welcoming toward people like me. I probably would not have been as likely to join if I had seen as much hostility as in, say, an Instagram comment section or a Twitter thread.

Your reply was great, but this part rings especially true! I've noticed that whenever someone is overly aggressive on Neocities (usually on status posts), they get shunned fairly quickly. It's honestly really confusing whenever someone is mean on there, and it's honestly rather chaotic whenever that kind of stuff happens.
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starbreaker
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« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2024 @938.96 »

It's still a lot better than social media actively promoting hateful rhetoric though, I'd argue it's easier to ignore a bigot with their own site than on a site that promotes their stuff endlessly (Twitter comes to mind, especially with its recent changes...).

Or a bunch of bigots congregating on a single site that nobody else need frequent. Most people don't care what happens on Stormfront as long as it stays there and most people know not to go there.
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« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2024 @125.34 »

hmm idk, but it probably is related to what others have said about censorship and outright hatred that mainstream media portrays.
like its not uncommon to see people send death threats or deadnaming or anything to queer folk, but in the small web at most you'd get trolls (*from what I've seen). The way people interact and the culture around small web is different from mainstream social websites.

And about censorship: I've seen a lot of trans people (women mostly) being banned from tumblr and twitch (im sure it happens in other places as well) for no reason. Or lgbt people in general just talking about their sexuality and gender and being reported or taken down when all they wanted was to celebrate their identity or share with others
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thea apianæ
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« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2024 @396.93 »

it reminds me a bit of zines! i'm no expert but i know they've been very popular in the queer community, and it seems like a similar idea -- like others have said, there's unfortunately a lot of censorship of and hostility towards queer people in mainstream media, so i think a lot of us naturally gravitate towards these indie-type spaces where we can express ourselves in ways that aren't always accepted by wider society, and without being restricted / made palatable for the sake of profits or anything like that.
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malice
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« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2024 @691.72 »

for me, i think it's because it's so small and not full of algorithms that decide what you want to see that there aren't giant groups of people hating on people for existing. i won't say that haters and bigots don't exist on this side of the internet, they unfortunately exist everywhere and some hardcore bigots actually are starting to flock to the web revival stuff due to the lack of "censorship" (read: they get to threaten/plan to attack or kill minorities without people getting rightfully mad and reporting them), but i think it's just harder for them to congregate and attack on other places outside of their own bubble. why waste time digging through niche forums (that will probably make you sign up and wait for admin approval before posting) and personal sites to find queer people to harass when twitter will deliver them right to your timeline?

 it sucks that the people on larger sites have to deal with this, but due to our small size and the fact that we're not as easy to reach in general, we're kinda safe to be ourselves here. On to of that, a lot of web revival places have real people moderating and they could be marginalized people and allies too, so when people report posts for hateful content, it's more likely to get removed (this might not be the case for every forum, though, some mods can be awful people, but for the majority of my time in the web revival scene i have encountered far more good mods than bad). meanwhile i've seen people use slurs and threaten lives on twitter and when the post gets reported, the site says there's nothing wrong with it! i do think that as time goes on and the movement grows, we will see more people like this, but they'll probably not be nearly as big as the hate groups on the big web. i could be totally wrong about all of this, though, this is just my conclusion based on my personal experiences, please don't hesitate to correct me if i'm wrong about anything.
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starbreaker
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« Reply #12 on: January 12, 2024 @752.26 »

i won't say that haters and bigots don't exist on this side of the internet, they unfortunately exist everywhere and some hardcore bigots actually are starting to flock to the web revival stuff due to the lack of "censorship" (read: they get to threaten/plan to attack or kill minorities without people getting rightfully mad and reporting them)

We can still report these sites to their domain registrars and hosts.

Perhaps it's also time to put up a little site that lists sites that should be avoided for various reasons while providing evidence.

For example, people new to the small web might not know about Stormfront. Nor might they know that sites like Land Chad and Based Cooking are operated by Luke Smith, a neo-reactionary tech influencer who has received crypocurrency donations from a now-deceased French white supremacist according to the Guardian.

Of course, the person running such a site shouldn't be too vulnerable to attack because a site like this is likely to draw opposition if it gets noticed. I guess I'll have to do it.
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« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2024 @702.79 »

As someone who's still fairly new to the web revival scene a list of sites to avoid sounds great, I just worry that it could very easily turn into a directory for bigots should they find it.
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emeowly
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« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2024 @845.90 »

As someone who's still fairly new to the web revival scene a list of sites to avoid sounds great, I just worry that it could very easily turn into a directory for bigots should they find it.

in my experience seeing these kinds of lists on tumblr, instagram, twitter, etc, thats exactly what happens. they use these lists to find eachother and it can help them establish a community if there isnt one already or find a community if they haven't found one already. ive seen terf accounts with less than 10 followers at the time a post was made launch up to a few hundred followers soon after. it tends to give these people far more exposure and exposes more queer people to their hatred than if a list was never made at all

i think a list of things to watch out for, dogwhistles, terms, etc, would be far more helpful to help us identify bigots as we see them rather than a list of bigots a lot of us probably wouldn't have even known about otherwise that would give them exposure. a list of hateful people only goes so far and only lasts so long before quickly becoming outdated(domain changes/deleted sites/etc) and a list of bigots is really only going to be a fraction of the amount of bigots there really are in reality, but knowing the dogwhistles and terms and rhetoric they use can help us identify any bigot we find ourselves
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