Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transsexual and queer people in geek communities face a range of issues which sometimes overlap with other forms of oppression, including those experienced by women.

For example:

  • Invisibility -- anything that assumes a heterosexual male audience assumes the absence of all women (because they are not male) as well as all gay and queer men (because they are not heterosexual). Queer women are frequently excluded from "female-friendly" environments that assume participants are heterosexual.
  • Sexualized environments may be uncomfortable to people who do not conform to the majority sexual identity.
  • Online harrassment in the form of "faggot" and "dyke" jokes
  • Male gaze, for example being defined as ugly by heterosexual men and heteronormative culture generally. This is especially relevant to butch women.
  • Fetishization of lesbians: as on a wider cultural scale, some male geeks will fetishize lesbian sexuality depicted in pornography while treating as disgusting other lesbian or gay relationships or sexuality.
  • Trans women experience transmisogyny and are targeted by intense harassment that cisgender women are not.

Gender and sexuality in databases

A lot of software makes presumptions that users are cisgender or that they have cissexual bodies: social software often doesn't handle trans individuals' genders. Sometimes they cannot handle LGBT identities.

Online services/databases/standards that handle gender with at least some complexity:

Other articles about the issue:


Miscellaneous links/further reading

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