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The Two Lives of a Mixed Race Queer Person

“Who are you writing for these days?” It’s a question that comes up a lot when you’re a writer. It’s usually a simple thing to answer, but when the answer is “mostly a gay dating app,” and the question is coming from your dad, who you rarely (read: never) talk about your sexuality with, it becomes more complicated. We were sitting on the couch watching Turkish music videos. During the commercial, my dad decided to pop the question. I immediately got a knot in my stomach, a specific kind of kno
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Pop Stars Around The World That You Should Stan

Stanning female pop stars is one of my all-time favorite hobbies, and one that I think a lot of other queer folks share. However, we often talk and tweet about the same singers over and over again. As an attempt to expose gay folks to new languages and genres of music, I’ve put together a little list of talented, badass female performers who perform in a bunch of different languages that I think anyone could get into. Often compared to Britney Spears, Utada Hikaru (or Utada) is one of the bigg
INTO

The Two Lives of a Mixed Race Queer Person

“Who are you writing for these days?” It’s a question that comes up a lot when you’re a writer. It’s usually a simple thing to answer, but when the answer is “mostly a gay dating app,” and the question is coming from your dad, who you rarely (read: never) talk about your sexuality with, it becomes more complicated. We were sitting on the couch watching Turkish music videos. During the commercial, my dad decided to pop the question. I immediately got a knot in my stomach, a specific kind of kno
INTO

Do Queer People Like Esports?

Overwatch, a popular first-person shooter game, has started an official competitive gaming league. Operating in a similar way to regular sports organizations, the Overwatch League comprises 12 teams and over 100 players, who have come to compete in the inaugural season. Each team represents a city in the world — Seoul Dynasty, Shanghai Dragons, Dallas Fuel, etc. — and every week teams face off in a series of Overwatch games. The league opened its first week to a pretty large audience, garnering
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The Rising Pressure of Drag As RuPaul's Empire Grows

Emi Grate, a Brooklyn drag queen, recently summed up perhaps the biggest critique that drag performers have about RuPaul’s Drag Race: “There’s more to drag than TV-ready makeup, finger wave wigs, and supermodel poses.” While the show has existed for nine years and has become the primary example of drag culture for the mainstream, it's not perfect -- and many queens who are performing in a post-Drag Race industry have a few issues with the biggest being that the show only shows a few different t
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YouTuber Sailor J Is Politicizing Beauty Videos For The Better

One of her most popular videos about Thanksgiving and cultural appropriation was actually only intended as a gift to one of her subscribers, “I didn’t think it would get as big as it did. She’s Native American so she was sort of venting to me and she sort of sarcastically was like, ‘I’d die if you could make a video for me to throw at all the appropriators.’” Although I think the topics of her videos are relatable, I don’t think they are the main reason she’s interesting to watch. Rather, there
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The Practice of Reclaiming Bad Representation

Relating to a fictional character can have a significant impact on how you engage with a story. You might laugh at a character making mistakes you’ve made or get emotional for an on-screen relationship that feels familiar. If you can see yourself in another person — real or otherwise, you can empathize easier. For a lot of folks, though, finding a character to actually relate to or feel represented by, can be a challenge. If you’re not white, male, cisgender, straight or from a western country,
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I've Always Felt Gay, But I Never Felt Queer Until RuPaul's Drag Race

His name was Adam, and although I don’t remember when or how we met, I can say with certainty that he was the coolest person I’ve ever seen. He had dreamy eyes and knew martial arts. He had a cool racially diverse friend group that all had color-coordinated outfits and fought monsters together…okay, so he was a Power Ranger. It was still real. The point is, even though I didn’t have language for it, I had my first crush on a boy when I was four years old. However, it wasn’t until earlier this y
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Why Nintendo Is So Important to Queer Folks

Before last year, the only games I played were on a Nintendo platform. In fact, since I got a Nintendo 64 when I was five, I’ve only ever kept up consistently with Nintendo consoles and handheld devices. When I was younger, that decision was mostly based on the fact that Nintendo was the home of Pokémon and Zelda, but as I got older, my reasoning became a bit more serious. I’ve found that Nintendo has been the primary choice for a lot of queer gamers through the years. In the more toxic parts o
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How Non-Binary Folks Navigate Creating Avatars In Video Games

One of the best parts of starting a new roleplaying game is creating a new character. In fact, my roommate often times just creates a character and doesn’t play the actual game. And what I’ve discovered over my years of gaming is that everyone has a different strategy when they go to create a character. Some people want to make a character that looks badass or interesting, and some people just want to make something that resembles them.
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Buffy, Sailor Moon and Queering Media

It seems nowadays that, in our post-Glee world, that every TV show has at least one queer character — no matter how poorly written. However, it wasn’t too long ago that queer folks were fighting for any crumb of representation, finding their only solace in Will & Grace and the sexual tension between Xena and Gabrielle. Many young queer people became devoted to specific media, not because it was necessarily meant for them, but because they had elements that they related to as marginalized people
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On Western Queerness and the Idea of “Chosen Family”

One of the most famous moments in RuPaul’s Drag Race herstory is when Roxxxy Andrews has a breakdown on stage and talks about her childhood, where she was left by her mother at a bus stop. In response, RuPaul said, “We, as gay people, get to choose our families…I am your family, we are family here.” It’s a touching sentiment and a phrase that’s become somewhat of a mantra in gay culture. However, as someone who isn’t fully American, I’ve often questioned this phrase in how it pertains to non-We
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Meet Trashly, The Drag Queen Who Streams Video Games

Drag has changed a lot since the development of social media. In addition to pageants and live performances, queens can now exist entirely behind screens. Famous queens like Aja and Kim Chi first had their rise on Instagram, while Trixie Mattel and Katya garnered success after Drag Race in their web series that’s now landed them a show on Viceland. Another way of performing could be a queen streaming herself playing video games. But who would do that? Say hello to Hashtag Trashly — the drag que
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'Overwatch' gets a lot right about diversity, but totally fails with Symmetra

Since its release in May, Overwatch, Blizzard's massively popular competitive first-person shooter, has paved the way for diversity and representation in the gaming world. To the dismay of angry Gamergaters who rail against political correctness, Overwatch features playable characters who are queer, nonwhite and non-male. Fifteen countries (and the moon) are represented in the hero roster. The game routinely makes headlines for, well, "getting it right" in a way similar titles never seem to emul
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Neo-Nazis are making their own video games — and they're just as horrifying as you'd think

The neo-Nazi game Zog's Nightmare, one of the most violent, anti-Semitic titles ever released, has an equally horrific soundtrack that mocks a trio of Jewish rappers. Imagine the Beastie Boys' "(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party)," but instead of the original chorus, the line goes, "You gotta fight/ For a white/ Country." It plays in the background as you face off against an army of Jewish soldiers with yellow stars pinned to their uniforms. You won't find this kind of white supremacist
Mic

4 indie games from developers of color that you should check out now

While big blockbuster games are always fun, sometimes it can be overwhelming to dive into a game that might takes dozens of hours to complete. Already in 2017, we’ve seen some great, but really long games hit the market, including The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Nier: Automata, Horizon Zero Dawn, Prey and Mass Effect: Andromeda. Sometimes it’s nice to relax with smaller games and support independent developers while you’re doing it. Mic was lucky enough to go to the 2017 Game Developer
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Video games keep failing to represent Middle Eastern and South Asian identities

Earlier this year, after a Kansas man shot two Indian immigrants, he headed to an Applebee's and told his bartender he had killed two Iranian men. Since 9/11, Sikhs have been increasingly the target of hate crimes because they're often mistaken for Muslim. In 2015, 30% of Republicans and 19% of Democrats atually voted in a poll to bomb Agrabah — the fictional city from Aladdin. It would be easy to point to the xenophobic scare tactics of Fox News, the alt-right and our current president as the
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Black cosplayer shares racist reaction to costume: ‘It was a sea of n-words’

It's no surprise Overwatch fans really care about the game's characters — even the voice actors get a bunch of love. But sometimes fans can take their love to the extreme, arguing with and harassing people who disagree with their interpretations. And that's when we see the true measure of people, usually for worse. Popular cosplayer Krissy Victory recently posted a video outlining her experience with cosplaying D.Va and the response she received as a black cosplayer. In a follow-up interview f
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Inside the neo-Nazi forum where white nationalists share their favorite games

Recommendations are the backbone of any gaming community. Whether it's a conversation between friends, a blog post or a lively thread in an online forum, sharing video games with your peers is an undeniable part of the culture. On one particular gaming forum, a user by the name of "Jelennuie" started a thread asking for game recommendations "especially for young WNs." They then listed some examples of their own, noting "my two favorites are Dragon Quest 8 and Final Fantasy IX." Now, this kind
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