The Icelandic National Broadcasting Service, RÚV, has launched a new web series about being queer.
The series are called Hinseginleikinn – Everyday Queer – and it’s creator and host is Ingileif Friðriksdóttir, which bases the concept of the series on the hugely popular snapchat account Hinseginleikinn, where queer people of every kind tell their stories. The purpose of the series is to counteract stereotypes and show the diversity of the queer community.
“I got the idea for the snapchat account two years ago and me and my fiancée, María Rut Kristinsdóttir, gathered lots of people to tell their stories on snapchat,” Ingileif explains. “Already there have been over 300 people snapping about their stories, but I felt that we needed to expand to reach more viewers and contacted RUV and sold them the idea.”
“We try to be on a cheerful note in the series. And I think that everyone who wants to know more about queerness can find some answers to their questions there.”
The first episode was launched on RUV´s website, ruv.is, on Thursday March 9th and already more than 30.000 viewers have watched it. Ingileif is obviously very happy with the reception.
“Yes, it has gotten a remarkable reaction,” she says. “Even though the snapchat account has been popular, we have gotten thousands of views for each story, I felt that snapchat is such a closed bubble that it was necessary to make these stories accessible in another format. And judging by how well the first episode was received I was right.”
The subject of the first episode was homosexuality and stereotypes, which, according to Ingileif, were the main reason she came up with the idea in the first place.
“There are these deep-rooted stereotypes about gays and lesbians,” she sighs. “In all the movies and tv-shows we hardly ever see homosexual people represented as they are. I mean no disrespect to the people who identify with those stereotypes, but it is frustrating to see how little they vary, and that they have not changed for ages! Queer people come in all shapes and sizes and the purpose of the series is to show the diversity of the people in our community.”
Ingileif says that both herself and her fiancée came out relatively late, mainly because they could not identify with the stereotypical lesbians shown in the media. She hopes that the series will help young people who are coming out to find queer people they can identify with.
“We saw these stereotypes of lesbians in the media and decided that we could not be lesbians because we were not like that. I think that notion is more common than we know of with young people who are discovering their true selves and it is important for them to know that being queer is not some fixed image.”
The second episode aired on March the 15th and it’s topic were trans people. Later episodes will discuss what it means to be intersex, non-binary, bisexual, pansexual and asexual. In each episode people from each group will tell their stories and in addition to that the series will search answers to various questions regarding what it means to be queer. The target group is young people, but Ingileif says that hopefully the series are entertaining and educating for all age groups.
“We try to be on a cheerful note in the series,” she says. “And I think that everyone who wants to know more about queerness can find some answers to their questions there. Most people on snapchat are fifteen years old or older and most queer people start figuring out their queerness long before that age. That was one of the reasons I wanted to make these series, to reach a younger audience than we can on the snapchat account. Hopefully we have reached them with those web series.”
The series are in Icelandic but Ingileif hopes one day they will be subtitled in English to “spread the word to the world”, as she puts it.
“I know of foreign people who have watched the first episode and really enjoyed it, even though they didn’t understand what was said. So that’s always an option!”
You can access the series on RÚV’s website, but you can also find it on the Facebook-page Hinseginleikinn, so be sure to check them out.