The Discourse: An Online Debate

The Discourse is an online community coalesced around debate about LGBT+ identity and inclusion. In this thesis, I specifically focus on the vitriolic debate over asexual inclusion in the LGBT+ community. Using data gathered from an extensive monthslong ethnographic study of The Discourse, involving participant observation and semi-structured interviews with participants, I attempt to make sense of The Discourse. This thesis examines the ways in which The Discourse parallels and inherits from older debates and schisms within the LGBT community. It also discusses different aspects of The Discourse germane to Internet studies topics, such as surveillance, free speech, and the ways in which identity intersects with Discourse interactions.

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