Cancellation Of Multiple LGBTQ+ Library Events Shows The Harmful Impact Of Disinformation – The Disinformation Project


Research group The Disinformation Project says that safety concerns leading to the cancellation of two rainbow storytime events at community libraries is evidence of the growing impact of disinformation in Aotearoa.

“We’ve seen a clear rise in LGBTQ events becoming the target of New Zealand’s disinformation networks. This is especially true of diversity and inclusion initiatives from local Councils or any LGBTQ events for young people or rainbow families,” says Director of Communications Nicole Skews-Poole.

Online hatred towards LGBTQ communities, especially trans and non-binary people, has been growing in Aotearoa in the last two years. Just under a year ago, The Disinformation Project published a snapshot report which outlined the growth of transphobia in disinformation networks.

“Disinformation about transgender people is a popular theme of conspiratorial disinformation channels in New Zealand, including online networks and offline groups like Destiny Church. Critically, the messaging in these groups mirrors that from right-wing and fundamentalist lobby groups from overseas,” says Skews-Poole.

“These networks seek to dehumanise already marginalised groups of people and frame them as risks to society,” says Skews-Poole, noting that “the messaging is copied from the way gay men were targeted by homophobic lobby groups in the 1960s and onwards.”

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The research group says that the silencing effect (also known as the “chilling effect”) of disinformation becomes evident when initiatives to promote diversity are cancelled, and eventually viewed as too risky to consider because of the corresponding threats of violence and harassment.

“We have a serious issue when libraries don’t feel safe to showcase and celebrate local diversity because groups of people have come to believe false and harmful ideas about other members of their communities.”


  1. Trans don’t believe that they possess the body of the opposite sex. They believe that they were born in the wrong body. Get that right first.

  2. Disinformation Networks. Disinformation Projects. Is there a difference?

    Men dressing up in gowns. Priests. Drag Queens. Is there a difference?

    • There’s a big difference and no one cares until they have to. Everyone’s trying to protect there rights.

  3. What’s that about. Isn’t it just a case that people don’t want others setting up alternative lifestyles modelling to their children. It’s a bit like religious instruction in school. Some puritan people or Destiny Church reps can get in there and bore their way into your child’s head. I wouldn’t want that.

    Why not just an ordinary librarian – get the good people who work there getting children hooked onto stories and books as so many will be looking at devices for their imagination stirrers. Let them draw lots to be the one that picks the book – off one shelf, so limiting time for choosing. But not to have no say in who participates say someone trying all-over tattoos or body piercing from every protuberance or whatever. Since when can anybody push their way in where they like?

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