Book Chapter: Twenty years of ‘cyberqueer’: The enduring significance of the Internet for young LGBTIQ+ people

We have a new book chapter in this terrific looking book out now, Youth, Sexuality and Sexual Citizenship, edited by Peter Aggleton, Rob Cover, Deana Leahy, Daniel Marshall, Mary Lou Rasmussen. Our chapter is titled ‘Twenty years of ‘cyberqueer’: The enduring significance of the Internet for young LGBTIQ+ people’. The chapter was co-authored with my wonderful Scrolling Beyond Binaries Study colleagues, Brendan Churchill, Son Vivienne, Benjamin Hanckel and Paul Byron. Abstract below. This is our first proper academic publication from the SBB study, and it was great to work with the editors of this book.




This chapter reflects on how ‘cyberqueer’ (Wakeford 2000 [1997]) spaces – digitally mediated spaces inhabited by queer people – have changed and evolved over the past twenty years. In doing so, we explore the enduring significance of the internet in the lives of young lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) people. We draw on data from an Australian survey, and specifically look at different patterns of self-reported gender, sexuality, and social media use across four age cohorts of young LGBTIQ+ people: 16-20, 21-25, 26-30, and 31-35. The findings from this study suggest that many of the productive and significant dimensions of the internet identified by Wakeford for queer users some twenty years ago endure today, albeit in new forms amidst new challenges.