Panel Discussion


Curated by Dunja Nesovic

2 November 2023
15:30 — 16:45

Location: Het Huis Main Stage

Queer representation received a massive boost from the rise of social media over the past decade. Queer communities are moving away from traditional media, like television and newspapers, that either ignore them or portray them in stereotypical, negative or heteronormative ways. They are now gravitating to platforms such as Instagram and TikTok to reclaim their representational agency. This panel will examine the latest forms of queer visibility on social media and the relationship between online platforms and their users. The conversation will focus on how Instagram and TikTok encourage performative self-representation and how this fits with Big Tech’s modes of control and commodification of queer identities. 

Participants: Ezra Šimek (DE), Kim van Sparrentak (NL), Alexander Jansen (NL)
Moderated by: Klara Debeljak (NL)

Queer Visibility on Social Media comprises a performance lecture by Ezra Šimek titled No offense, but, vol. 2, followed by a panel talk. Šimek will be joined by European Parliament member Kim van Sparrentak and Communications Manager for TikTok Netherlands Alexander Jansen. Simek’s performance opens up the discussion on the importance of freedom of queer representation on social media in facilitating queer liberation within and beyond these digital spaces. As well as representation, this panel explores algorithmic surveillance, platform governance and the commodification of identities. Kim van Sparrentak will offer her expertise on EU legislation concerning LGBTQIA+ issues, the development of AI, and digital platforms. Alexander Jansen is a queer inclusion advocate at TikTok NL who will provide insights into ways in which this platform protects and uplifts queer users. The panellists will advance the conversation about queer visibility on social media by contextualising it within the overlooked mechanisms of platform governance and exploitation. They will also propose ways in which user agency, legislation and regulation could support increased safety and empowerment for queer communities online. 


What else is on Thursday?

Check the timetable to visit more programmes with your Festival Pass (5-days) or Day Pass (1-day). With the passes you can also visit the festival exhibition Our Terms, Our Conditions at the IMPAKT [Centre for Media Culture] and Fotodok/Casco.

Thursday day pass 5-day festival pass

For more information on the festival tickets please see here

We Are Public
This programme is free for We Are Public members. On the We Are Public website you can see how to get a ticket with your membership.

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