For those of us who are trans people, the internet can be a place where our identities can develop freely. Communities on various social media give us space to think, discuss, and create friendships. But at the same time as the internet is a liberating place for many, it is common for trans people to receive hate and threats.
Advice Counteract cisnormativity
Cisnormativity is the assumption that there are two genders (woman and man) and that everyone identifies with the gender that they were assigned at birth. Don't assume people's gender. Instead, ask for their pronouns.
Trans people deserve the same respect as everyone else. Having a trans perspective on cyber hate means understanding intentional and unintentional violations. Curiosity about different identities and experiences can be very good! But well-meaning questions can end up in oppression when the person experiences them as such.
Here are some examples of offensive actions against trans people on the internet that everyone should avoid
- Asking private questions about the body, sexuality, or gender identity.
- Questioning a person’s gender identity, pronoun, name, or experiences of being trans.
- Using the wrong pronoun or wrong name for the person
- Writing offensive comments about the person’s appearance or gender expression.
All of these actions can make those of us who are trans feel unsafe and insecure in being ourselves and from having an open internet, free from hatred.
How can you avoid violating or cyber hating a trans person?
- Support the victim’s experience if someone questions their identity
- Back the trans person up when someone uses the wrong pronoun. Correct the person who uses the wrong pronoun.
- Do not assume someone’s gender
- Are you unsure about the person’s pronoun or name? Write to the person in a private message and ask what pronouns they use and what their name is.
Tired of no one understanding the problem?
Use our micro activism posters! Send it anonymously, hang it up in the coffee room, or spread it on your social media. Transphobia is real!