The LGBT community actively getting involved in media can be traced back to the 1970s (). Back then, a group of lesbian writers and activists initiated a gay liberation movement that represented both lesbians and gay men. However, other lesbian activists felt that the movement needed to be focused more on lesbians because they felt that gay men had their own agenda. So the lesbian community decided to create their own identity by immersing themselves in their own culture. This culture included good, creative writing, art and music ().
They even created their own news periodical, called Lesbian Connection, which “in the early 1970s in East Lansing, Michigan, this periodical had a circulation of five to ten thousand copies bimonthly, making it the lesbian periodical with perhaps the largest number of readers of its time” (). Basically, because they were not being fairly represented by the media itself, they decided to make their own media “by lesbians, for lesbians” (). The funding for their media projects was tough though; whether they were asking for small or large amounts money, they always had a hard time raising it. If they were asking for or making too much money, then they were seen as exploiters for the cause rather than supporters. On the contrary, when they asked for small amounts of money to finance their products, it still “see med bound up with a rejection of a view of creativity that emphasized skill and technical competence as well as the professional artist ‘s mystique and exclusivity” ().During the same time the lesbian activists were creating their own media movement, movies depicting them, as well as the rest of the LGBT community, were being created as well.
The first breakthrough film, The Boys in the Band, w. .oes admit in his article though, that further research needs to be done. Cartoons tend to misrepresent or underrepresent groups of people as well. Mainly, the misrepresentation and underrepresentation the LGBT community. According to () research, “anywhere from 4% to 9% of all adults are gay or lesbian (McWhirter, Sanders, & Reinisch, 1990; Sell, Wells, & Wypij, 1995), and recent evidence suggests that the bisexual population is likely to be comparable in size to the homosexual population (Mosher, Chandra, & Jones, 2005); but in the cartoon universe, only 0.
3% of the characters studied were anything other than heterosexual” (). That is an extremely low percentage of representation compared to the LGBT population. Not only that, but in () research, they did not find any lesbian or bisexual cartoon characters; and this was out of more than 4,300 cartoon characters.