Impact of Social Media Platforms and Search Engines on Identity Expression Within the LGBTQ+ Community
Largely recruited from LGBTQ youth groups, 68 youth participated in focus groups (n = 63) or individual interviews (n = 5). The sample included 50% male, 47% female, and 3% transgender participants. Researchers used a consensual methods approach to identify negative and positive factors across 8 domains. Negative factors were associated with families, schools, religious institutions, and community or neighborhood; positive factors were associated with the youth's own identity development, peer networks, and involvement in the LGBTQ community. These findings suggest a pervasiveness of negative experiences in multiple contexts, and the importance of fostering a positive LGBTQ identity and supportive peer/community networks. Efforts should work towards reducing and eliminating the prejudicial sentiments often present in the institutions and situations that LGBTQ youth encounter.
Technol. Soc. 2010]. It is of particular importance to LGBTQ young people, who are faced with the task of negotiating how they manage their sexual and gender identities on social media. However, the online contexts of LGBTQ young people have been understudied due to a focus on the experiences of members of dominant groups [Alper M., Katz V.S., Clark L.S.].
When someone is depressed, having the motivation to find a phone number or support group is not easy. Social media sites could begin listing the national suicide phone number directly on their homepage, strictly to help those in need, whether they are LGBT youth or any other individual. Education in school for children and education for parents about acceptance could benefit everyone. Young people must be reminded that we are all different and need to accept one another rather than pass judgment, because everyone has their own struggles.
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