Media and Its Effect on How the LGBTQ Community is Perceived

Does the media impact the perception of the LGBTQ community?  The answer is a resounding yes. In fact, the effect it has had can be hard to quantify; but most will agree it has been considerable. 

First, think about all of the different types of media. We see things on television, in newspapers and magazines, and online. And today more than ever, social media has become a primary conduit for information.  The role it plays in all of our lives is considerable. 

While we are likely aware of the different types of media, we don’t always recognize how different organizations, groups, and people leverage it to impact the way we think and act.  Of course, we understand advertising and promotion, but media also impacts our views and how we perceive people, places, and things, including the LGBTQ community.

Media and It’s Effects - Positive & Negative 

The role that media has played in this particular situation is interesting, as it has had both positive and negative effects, depending upon where the message originates and to whom it is being shared.  

Imagery and words can be helpful in the acceptance of the community and the improvement of the rights we have. When LGBTQ individuals are portrayed positively, in television shows and articles, it helps others to understand that people are people, and that love is love. Positive role models in the media are beyond valuable to all of us.

Additionally, when advertisers highlight our community or share their support (like for Pride month), they help improve acceptance across the country in general. They support us, and we in turn support them.

Unfortunately, not all media coverage is positive. Some groups continue to use their access to media to disparage certain members of our community, highlighting their close-minded beliefs. Sadly, this type of information reinforces the feelings and behaviors of those who don’t accept us and even discriminate against us.  It can be emotionally damaging and even encourage violence.

As a community, we need to consistently support those media outlets, companies, and individuals who advocate positively for us - the value they provide to the community as a whole is so valuable.  And, we must continue to educate those who don’t  - consistently providing them the information they need to reexamine their perspectives.