Digitala förbindelser : Rum, riktning och queera orienteringar

Sammanfattning: Internet has been available for the public during the past thirty years, and is perceived as having radically changed the terms of LGBTQ peoples’ possibilities of connecting with one and other, especially for LGBTQ people in rural spaces. With a queer phenomenological approach, the overall aim of the thesis is to analyze how people come to find their way in life from a non-heterosexual position. The aim is more precisely to study LGBTQ peoples’ use of social media and how this relates to queer orientations.The main material consists of fifteen interviews with LGBTQ people from the north of Sweden, focusing on the usage of digital environments and its importance for the informants’ queer orientations. The material also includes online observations from Facebook and Qruiser, as well as observations of two rural and queer themed Facebook groups and two rotating curated Instagram accounts. From one of these Instagram accounts, the entries of three informants living in the north of Sweden were collected. The material also includes press material and marketing of the app Grindr available at, App Store and the related site INTO.In the thesis, questions about when experiences are made, and where they are made are of importance. Particular interest is thus focused on time and geographical location, mainly focusing on the north of Sweden. With inspiration from actor network theory, it is taken into account how digital materiality, together with time and space, co-create conditions for use of social media and the understanding of these types of digital spaces. The thesis is centered around themes that came forth in the material: significance of digital environments in LGBTQ peoples’ lives, problems and possibilities in relation to openness and visibility, and how social media platforms are used to bring about change and re-negotiate notions of geographical space and sexual orientation. The thesis shows the significance of digital, geographical, human as well as non-human relations and norms that are of importance regarding queer orientations and its bearings.