How Roposo encouraged the LGBTQIA+ community to ‘Own the Troll’
While trolling is a universal challenge faced across society, members of the LGBTQIA+ community has especially been susceptible to getting trolled – online and offline. In June, Roposo celebrated Pride Month through various collaborations with its LGBTQIA+ creators. These creators went LIVE on Roposo with highly engaging and entertaining content and were also part of a Roposo Pride campaign that encouraged members of the LGBTQIA+ community to speak up against the culture of trolling that they combat, both online and offline.
The four creators who were seen live on Roposo, included fashionista Shivam Bhardwaj, make-up artist Bhumneshwar Manhas, comedian Anish Bhagat and singer Alisha Batth.
Adgully reached out to Roposo and its creators to know more about the ‘Own the Troll’ campaign, how social platforms like Roposo are helping promote gender inclusivity, and much more.
This is a generation that believes in owning one’s individuality and identity, and they resonate with creators who are true to themselves and are authentic. Commenting on this, Abhinav Jain, Vice President, Roposo, said, “We encourage and even groom our creators to be their most authentic selves and strive to create a space for them to focus on what is important – their talent and craft. Talented creators – someone with deep expertise in a relevant field and an ability to engage meaningfully with audiences – are welcome at Roposo, irrespective of their gender, caste, creed or sexual orientation.”
He further added, “We recently collaborated with four of our own creators from the LGBTQIA+ community for a unique ‘Own The Troll’ campaign during Pride Month. They hosted and were a part of some truly entertaining LIVE sessions across categories like fashion, music, make-up, and comedy. Unfortunately, this community is often exposed to trolling and undue criticism offline and online, being judged or shamed for being themselves. At Roposo, only their talent matters, and we want to offer a level playing field for them to shine and showcase their work to millions through our platform. We hope that this not just adds visibility to their profiles but also provides opportunities for more professional growth.”
A guy wearing a skirt or a male make-up artist is taboo in India even today and is a stereotype created by society. And with one being queer, it makes it an even bigger point of conversation in the country. Explaining about how platforms like Roposo has helped individuals in their journey of self-acceptance and how have they boosted one’s confidence, Shivam Bhardwaj shared, “When Roposo told me about their plan for the ‘Own The Troll’ campaign, it was encouraging to see that this is a platform that celebrates diversity and supports every kind of creator. In the past, queer artists haven’t seen a lot of support and encouragement, and there is still a long way to go. However, times are slowly changing and platforms like Roposo are giving creators a chance to showcase their talent based purely on merit, irrespective of their choices, preferences, sex, or religion. I am also really very happy that through this campaign, I can own my identity, give my talent its due, work in the field of content creation and get more amazing opportunities in the future. It is also a medium to hear positive comments from the audience and their support for you.”
Bhumneshwar added here, “I am very surprised to see how people cannot accept the fact that make-up is gender-neutral. Even today, people judge male or queer make-up artists. Our society has created this gender-role bias and I truly believe that creator-driven platforms like Roposo that predominantly speak to the GenZ and the youth of the country are helping us break this stereotype. It has encouraged talented creators like me to showcase, educate and entertain people about all aspects of make-up, something I have deep expertise with, on their platform. I am truly happy that through my content, I have been able to make people comfortable with the fact that any artiste, irrespective of their caste, creed, sex, or preferences, can do makeup as well and express themselves freely without being bothered about the trolls.”
Sharing his own experience, Anish Bhagat said, “Being a queer artist, I have always been stereotyped. In fact, people have judged me based on how I talk, how I dress, and so on. Having said that, I have seen a slight shift in the mindset of people, and I am very happy that platforms like Roposo are providing a safe space for creators, irrespective of their caste, sex, or preference, to showcase their talent unabashedly and help them own their identities. They promote creators on the basis of their talent in front of millions of users, without discrimination. They let you be the main character, the actor as well as the director and that has been the biggest motivating factor for me on the platform. I’m able to stay true to myself and express myself freely without any fear of being judged.”
On the struggles that artists from the LGBTQIA+ community, especially queer musicians, face when it comes to promoting talents on various platforms, Alisha Batth noted, “Even though the world is becoming more open-minded, I have seen queer artists continuing to be judged based on their personal lives, rather than their content. I have been trolled many times for my identity instead of receiving feedback for my music. That’s why we need more inclusive platforms like Roposo, which help connect and interact with so many people directly through live shows, where creators are promoted and rewarded based on their content. They help give us visibility, but in the right way, which helps us with our careers as well. In fact, with millions of users on the platform, Roposo helps artists to showcase their creativity and own their identity, irrespective of their caste, religion, sex, or preferences. This is a step towards the inclusion of the LGBTQIA+ community in the country’s mainstream pop culture.”