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As the Internet has become an increasingly integral part of our daily lives, it's transformed virtually everything about how we live--from how we communicate with friends and family, how we get our jobs done, and, yes, how we flirt, find lovers, and explore our sexuality. In many ways, this evolution has been a positive one, bringing us amazing new ways to connect with the rest of the world, but it's also had some unforeseen consequences. Just over a decade ago, when the country was reeling from the aftermath of the Lewinsky scandal, who could have imagined that one day a congressman would be forced to resign from his post after a scandal that involved no sex, no illicit meetings--in fact, nothing more than some online flirting and a few ill advised sexts?
Sex in the Digital Age examines how the Internet has transformed our relationship to sexuality: what it's given us, what it's taken away, and how it's transformed our ideas and expectations about how our friends, lovers, and public figures can--and should--behave.
Jo and Blair on Facts of Life; Cagney & Lacey; Marlene Dietrich and any woman she shared the screen with. Before lesbians were allowed to be part of mainstream pop culture, gay women lived for subtext. As visibility increases, queer women dominate blogs, forums and social media sites like Twitter and Tumblr, “shipping” or “slashing” these fictional female couples (and the actresses who play them). The result is a whole new kind of relationship between online content and users. AfterEllen.com editor Trish Bendix and video remixer Elisa Kreisinger will discuss how cultivating these female-heavy fandoms though editorial and video has encouraged a consistent demand for new content for this active and ever growing niche audience.
Everyone Is Gay (EIG) began as a humorous pseudo-advice blog, but has quickly become a safe haven for young people-particularly LGBTQ youth, their families, & friends. Through a combination of social networking sites (Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube & Vimeo), the creators of EIG have successfully built a “big gay sandbox” where their audience can anonymously ask them everything from "Will people think I’m a gym teacher if I cut my hair?" to "What do I do if my religious parents disown me when they find out I’m trans?”The relatable advice gurus offer frequently funny & often poignant guidance, personal anecdotes, & professional resources, effectively establishing themselves as the cool big sisters of Tumblr who are there when you need a helping hand or a Beyoncé playlist.This panel will cover the effectiveness of EIG's multiplatform approach, discuss the ways in which the site utilizes anonymity & offer tips on how the Internet can be harnessed to create a positive social impact.
9th–13th March 2012