Australians are doing more searches online for information on LGBTIQ+ topics, with increases around high-profile community events and news.
Google searches for ‘what is transgender’ have increased by 237% in the last six months, and ‘how to come out’ has increased by 111%, new research from Semrush has shown.
Other top searches by Australians have included ‘what is non-binary’ and ‘what does cis mean’.
Laura Morelli, Semrush Head of Media Australia and UK, said that the number of searches has tended to spike each year around events such as Pride Month.
“Another interesting data trend is the rise in searches for ‘how to use pronouns’, which has spiked 100% over the last six months,” said Morelli.
“This could indicate that Aussies are trying to avoid misgendering, as broader pronoun terminology has become more common both socially and within the workplace.”
Award-winning Sydney drag favourite Hannah Conda said that the overall figures reflect people taking an interest in LGBTIQ+ matters.
“It’s really great to see these huge leaps in people educating themselves,” she said.
“It shows that people are trying to break down their own stigmas and biases, and that’s really encouraging and important.
“Once we get education and understanding of these things, it’s not scary anymore – you’re just another person.”
Hannah said that her own reading to understand what non-binary gender means had led her to embrace that identity.
“It was something I just didn’t understand, but in getting out there and researching online, I figured out that’s where I fit,” she said.
She said that work remains for LGBTIQ+ rights, and minorities need to support each other in fighting to make Australia and the world more equitable for all.
“We’ve made strides here in Australia, but it hasn’t [resolved] things like homophobia or the legality of being a queer person in other parts of the world, and things like adoption and parental laws for queer families still need work,” Hannah said.
“While [the figures] are positive, and we’re starting to make strides with allies and we’re a lot more visible, the fight still continues – especially for members of the trans community and BIPOC community members [for example].”
She said that support for the community needs to go beyond Pride Month.
“I’m proud every single day of the year,” said Hannah.
“Support needs to happen all year round, in all different facets.
“Hopefully through Pride Month, these conversations can happen, and we can create workplaces and companies that can support us as queer people.
“[They] can be proud of us all year round and then amp it up for Pride Month.”