A Linguistic Study Of Image And Language Of Self-Presentation Of Men On Grindr, A Gay Networking App

(Kajian Linguistik Pengimejan dan Penggunaan Bahasa dalam Penampilan Diri oleh Para Lelaki di Grindr, Aplikasi Rangkaian Gay)

  • Muhammad Fakhrul Aqil Fadzil Fakulti Sains Sosial dan Kemanusiaan, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia
  • Bahiyah Dato’ Haji Abdul Hamid Fakulti Sains Sosial dan Kemanusiaan, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia
Keywords: gay, self-presentation, Grindr, LGBTQIA , critical image analysis

Abstract

ABSTRACT

People have been posting personal advertisements in newspapers to find romantic partners and pen pals ever since the mid-seventeenth century. The ubiquity of today’s systems such as online location-aware dating applications for meeting nearby partners provide novel social opportunities as well as a variety of ways people chose to portray themselves—especially in the LGBTQIA+ community as well as the men who have sex with men community here in Malaysia. Such is the case of Grindr. This paper explores the way Malaysian men in the gay community portray themselves through critical image analysis and discourse analysis based on the users’ profile pictures as well as their ‘About Me’ section on Grindr. 30 Grindr profiles were analysed. The analysis of profiles reveal two categories of men who are members of the gay community on Grindr; one who is looking for a long-term companionship and the other, those who are looking for casual sexual activities i.e., for short-term companionships. This paper sheds light not only on the language of self-presentation of MSM in Malaysia visually and linguistically but it also sheds light on the linguistic behaviour of men in this particular community so that we can understand their needs and reach out to this particularly marginalised community, despite the society’s negative perceptions towards it.

Keyword: gay, self-presentation, Grindr, LGBTQIA+, critical image analysis

 

ABSTRAK

 

Pengiklanan peribadi telah sekian lama diamalkan oleh orang ramai sejak pertengahan kurun ketujuh belas lagi dalam mencari pasangan romantis. Lambakan aplikasi mencari jodoh yang berasaskan geo-lokasi telah menyebabkan tumbuhnya pelbagai peluang bagi individu untuk mencari pasangan seterusnya kepelbagaian dalam cara mereka menampilkan diri terutama sekali di dalam komuniti LGBTQIA+ dan MSM di Malaysia. Seperti apa yang berlaku di aplikasi Grindr. Kajian ini meneroka cara para jejaka di dalam komuniti gay di Malaysia menampilkan diri mereka melalui analisis imej kritikal dan analisis wacana berdasarkan profil Grindr mereka. 30 profil Grindr telah dianalisa dan menunjukkan dua kategori di dalam aplikasi tersebut iaitu profil yang mencari hubungan romantis jangka masa lama dan juga sebaliknya yang hanya mencari aktiviti seks kasual. Kajian ini bukan sahaja telah mengkaji tentang aspek keterampilan diri dan tingkah laku linguistik komuniti ini malah dapat membuka ruangan perbincangan baharu tentang komuniti yang marginal ini meskipun adanya tanggapan persepsi negatif oleh masyarakat.

Kata kunci: gay, self-presentation, Grindr, LGBTQIA+, critical image analysis

Published
2020-06-30
How to Cite
Fadzil, M. F. A., & Dato’ Haji Abdul Hamid, B. (2020, June 30). A Linguistic Study Of Image And Language Of Self-Presentation Of Men On Grindr, A Gay Networking App. Jurnal Wacana Sarjana, 4(3), 1- 21. Retrieved from http://spaj.ukm.my/jws/index.php/jws/article/view/322