Many memes on the Coronavirus are circulating the internet. Trump’s misinformation, including his recommendation to explore injecting or drinking disinfectants, might seem the worst virus-related memes being copy-pasted and shared in 2020. Or perhaps his advice to take untested drugs his family has financial ties to … However, far more sinister viral virus disinformation memes are in distribution. Of those, the ones explored in this article are more subtle and effective. They are aimed at larger goals than simply lining Trump family pockets, including attempts at disrupting global orders for cyberwar related functions. Viruses are being anthropomorphised—attributed human-like forms and traits—to spread geopolitical conspiracy theories on social media. As is often the case, highly sexualised LGBTIQ+ identities are being exploited to help make these memes spread faster, and to ensure they more deeply penetrate the collective psyche. This article considers the new phenomenon of the ‘viral lesbian virus waifu’, and her use in cyberwarfare, alongside the need for a homotransnationalist analytic.
|Title of host publication||Bent street 4.1: Australian LGBTIQA+ art, writing & ideas|
|Subtitle of host publication||love from a distance: intimacy and technology in time of COVID-19|
|Editors||Tiffany Jones, Jennifer Power, Henry von Doussa, Timothy W. Jones|
|Place of Publication||Melbourne|
|Number of pages||13|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jul 2020|
- social media
Jones, T. (2020). Viral lesbians: geopolitical uses of digital meme worship and sharing. In T. Jones, J. Power, H. von Doussa, & T. W. Jones (Eds.), Bent street 4.1: Australian LGBTIQA+ art, writing & ideas: love from a distance: intimacy and technology in time of COVID-19 (1 ed., Vol. 4, pp. 101-113). (Bent street; No. 4.1). Melbourne.