Social Question

Catnip5's avatar

How come the term GSM isn't often used to describe the LGBTQ community?

Asked by Catnip5 (252points) 2 weeks ago

GSM = Gender and Sexual Minorities. Or even GSRM/GRM where “R” stood for “romantic.”

If anything, I think “Gender and Sexual Minorities” already best
describe several groups or individuals who don’t identify as straight for the most part. It’s also less long-winded compared to how interchangeable or crazy the acronyms for “LGBT,” “LGBTQ,” “LGBTQ+” “LGBTQIA,” “LGBTQIAAPPQWERTY,” or etc….can get depending on who you ask.

GSM/GSRM on the other hand is already an inclusive term that covers all of the sexual minorities in a broad sense. No one needs to fight over or feel worrisome about this acronym. It’s also not as potentially mouthful to pronounce. So this situation makes me kinda curious about why less people or the media seem to be using this other term?

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18 Answers

josie's avatar

I could be wrong but..
It gets to a point where all the acronyms are pretty tough to keep track of.
And even the most interested or sympathetic observer finds it to be more trouble than it is worth.
Other people’s problems will never be more important than your problems.

Dutchess_lll's avatar

For the same reason we don’t include the word “minority” in the description of multiple minority groups.

filmfann's avatar

A friend of mine is very involved with the LGBT etc. community. She just refers to it as “The Alphabet” .

canidmajor's avatar

My LGBTQ friends tend to just use “queer” as the umbrella catch-all.

Catnip5's avatar

@Dutchess_lll So I guess racial, ethnic, and religious minorities can be ruled out too. Does it have something to do with being insensitive?

Demosthenes's avatar

Tradition, precedent, lack of exposure, etc. It’s difficult to introduce a new term and hope it catches on, no matter how “logical” it may be.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

I’m gay.

The label is still evolving. I also use queer to refer to my fellows in the LGBTQIA+ milieu.

elbanditoroso's avatar

GSM has a different widely used and understood meaning -and I can’t imagine that the LGBTQ community wants on an already well-known acronym.

(from Wikipedia) he Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) is a standard developed by the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) to describe the protocols for second-generation (2G) digital cellular networks used by mobile devices such as mobile phones and tablets. It was first deployed in Finland in December 1991.[2] By the mid-2010s, it became a global standard for mobile communications achieving over 90% market share, and operating in over 193 countries and territories.[3]

Catnip5's avatar

@filmfann I’ve seen “the alphabet” being used sometimes recently as a slang by some people. lol

Catnip5's avatar

@Hawaii_Jake So how do you feel about GSM out of curiosity? Is it not as popular for some reason or just considered obscure for your community?

Catnip5's avatar

@elbanditoroso True. Although there really is no official acronym to describe ‘gender and sexual minorities’ either.

Dutchess_lll's avatar

It’s not a question of sensitivity. I don’t know of anyone who would take offense by being called a minority.
I’m saying it’s redundant.

Darth_Algar's avatar

I just use “queer” mostly.

Cupcake's avatar

In my opinion, GSM is more on outsider, academic term. I agree with the potentially “disparaging” nature of the minority word. As a group, are they really a minority? Will they always be a minority? It doesn’t seem to have staying power. I mean, when we’re referring to Black and brown people, they (as a group) are not the minority. The same may come to be true for LGBTQIA+, especially as more people identify as queer or gender non-conforming.

While I teach gender and sexuality, I am not a part of the LGBTQIA+ community. They should be able to determine their own phrases and acronyms.

Demosthenes's avatar

I am a gay man and I’m perfectly fine with LGBT, LGBTQ, or LGBT+ (where the “Q” and ”+” cover sexualities and gender identities that are not specifically LGBT but also not straight and cis). I see the downsides of adding more letters to this acronym. People outside the community (and even within) often mock it and call it “alphabet soup” or mash the keyboard and write “LGBTXFXZJCKNRIPQJR” which feels like the LGBT community trying and failing to be taken seriously. Inclusivity leading to obscurity. Since I want us to be taken seriously, I prefer a shorter acronym or catch-all term like “queer” (some older LGBT people find the term “queer” offensive, as it used to be, but most younger people seem not to mind it).

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

@Catnip5 I prefer the term queer. I think the logistics of trying to get the wider population of the world to use a new alphabet soup term is too difficult.

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