People love watching performances of drag queens. They are frequently hilarious to watch and so are very entertaining. Shows typically contain competitive lip-syncing, singing, dancing, and comedy.
A drag queen is typically a male dressing up as a woman. But they can also be a transgender person or a cisgender woman in modern times. They are so popular now, there are rumors they already asked themselves the ultimate question, “should you buy YouTube views?”
Historically, drag is a form of art that has existed since ancient times. In drag shows, a person dons clothing and makeup meant to exaggerate a specific gender identity – usually, the opposite sex. It flourished in the West when in theatre, women were not allowed to perform. Hence, men took the roles they were supposed to play. Now, drag is associated with gender expression and tied closely with the LGBTQ+ community.
Drag culture was further popularized by the VH-1 reality show “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” The show has seen massive success and turned its drag queen contestants into celebrities.
#1 RuPaul’s Drag Race
In this TV show, drag queens face each other to see who will be crowned the best drag show performer. They have to do “lip-sync battles,” walk runways, impersonate celebrities, design custom outfits, and more.
Aside from making drag queens popular, the show also acts as a platform to highlight the issues in the drag community. In its first season, for instance, a contestant discussed their HIV-positive diagnosis.
There are a total of thirteen seasons and winners at the date of this writing. The show has also given birth to spinoffs like the “RuPaul’s Drag Race All-Stars,” “RuPaul’s Secret Celebrity Drag Race,” and “RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under.” It also became the highest-rated television program on Logo TV.
Thanks to RuPaul Andre Charles’ search for the “America’s next drag superstar,” drag shows have moved into the mainstream. No longer is this gender-bending art exclusive to nightlife. It is now a common type of performance.
“We are all born naked; the rest is drag,” says RuPaul, the self-proclaimed queen of drag.
#2 Drag on YouTube
Just like a hundred other things, in-person drag shows were canceled amidst the pandemic. But even a global health threat cannot stop the flourishing of drag culture. So what if they cannot perform face-to-face with their audiences? The world has YouTube.
YouTube has established itself as a leading source of entertainment. Unsurprisingly, performers like drag queens utilized it to continue their work during quarantine and lockdowns.
The pandemic has failed to stop the drag queens from pursuing this form of art. Likewise, it was unable to extinguish the interest of their fans to watch the shows. YouTube reported that in the US, views of videos from channels in the drag community increased more than 45% in 2020.
RuPaul’s Drag Race once again shows its massive contribution to the growth of drag culture. Of these more than 500 channels in the drag community, several are alumni of the show. Other drag queens review the episodes of the show. Even fans of the show, not even drag show performers, bring their analysis and commentary to the masses.
But the drag culture is not all about RuPaul’s Drag Race. Other types of content do not revolve around the show. For instance, some of the popular formats are makeup tutorials and transformations.
Q&A With Drag Queens
YouTube had interviewed three up-and-coming content creators in the drag community. The company asked how they are growing their channels. Also, they talked about the changes the creators have seen play out over the last year.
#3 Joseph Shepherd
The first content creator YouTube has interviewed Joseph Shepherd. He is the host of Exposed, a video series where he interviews drag queens.
YouTube asked how Joseph chooses which queens to interview. He says he bases it on who he thinks has a good story to tell. Furthermore, he chooses those he personally connects with.
Joseph cites that he once interviewed Kameron Michaels, who identifies as an introvert. He also interviewed Blair St. Clair, who talked about being a victim of sexual assault. What Joseph is trying to say here is that he interviews relatable people. He wants to spread the message that if these drag queens became successful, those who are like them could do it too.
When asked what he thinks of the evolution of the drag community on YouTube, he said he’d seen colossal development. In the past, drag shows on YouTube were purely musical performances and comedy acts. Now, there are makeup tutorials, and even better, drag queens talking about their lives. It is becoming more personable.
#4 Bussy Queen
Bussy Queen is a drag queen who hosts “Hot or Rot,” a RuPaul’s Drag Race review show. She was asked about the changes she noticed as in-person shows were canceled. Bussy Queen replies that the pandemic has completely shut down the nightlife scene of any performer. Since their primary source of income is to entertain, they needed a creative outlet. YouTube is a place where they can continue doing that. So, drag queens moving online is not surprising.
Bussy Queen also wanted to clear misconceptions about drag. She says that people want to “relegate drag to the nightclub scene.” With her videos, she is hoping to change their opinions. She says that YouTube allows her to express herself as a drag character in a way that she wants, when she wants, and how she wants. Being a drag queen does not only mean spending five nights a week working in clubhouses. It can also be acting, recording videos, and producing content.
#5 Kimora Blac
RuPaul’s Drag Race alumnus Kimora Blac is now on YouTube posting beauty tutorials and transformations. YouTube asked Kimora what convinced her to make a YouTube channel.
Kimora says that she became a drag queen because of her love for makeup. YouTube is a place where she can show that and her artistry to the world. So, it was an easy decision. Furthermore, she thinks it’s crucial for drag queens to showcase what they are doing at home. Kimora believes it’s part of the job.
YouTube also asked insights about what drag queens’ audiences consistently ask in a video. Kimora says it has to be the transformation videos that they like the most.
Fans Team Up with FacebookTogether With Kick It Out to Stand Up Against Discrimination against Drag Queen Shows on YouTube
Kick It Out, the leading anti-discrimination charity in football, collaborated with Facebook to launch Take A Stand. Such is an action-led initiative that gives fans the tools and information that would allow them to call out discrimination whenever they see it.
Fans from various clubs across the English football leagues were asked to explore experiences of discrimination. They were also asked to share how it impacted their relationship not only with the game but also with those who were around them.
Different forms of discrimination were discovered. For instance, there was targeted abuse in Sunday League games, homophobic slurs, racist fan chants, and group messaging exchanges. Yet, despite these various forms of discrimination, one thing in common was captured: its impact on those who love the game.
True enough, many football fans do not know how to react when they have seen or experienced discrimination firsthand. However, they all agreed that there is a way to stand against discrimination. They know that as a group of football lovers, they can show that they will not accept discrimination.
Facebook said that using the right tools and education, everyone can do something to stand up against discrimination. It will also promote a more inclusive society. This is the reason why Facebook is working with Kick It Out to provide more readily accessible tools and resources.
Facebook Together With Kick It Out: The Tools and Resources
- Anti-discrimination toolkit
This tool is accessible via WhatsApp. All you need to do is add 07432 140 310 to your WhatsApp contacts and message it with “hi.” After that, fans will be sent a menu of educational resources and content from Kick It Out, HOPE Not Hate, The FA, and other footballing partners.
With this free service, people will have an accessible way to learn about discrimination and how they can report it.
- Messenger reporting service
When fans can already return to stadiums after the pandemic, they can use Messenger’s reporting service to report matchday discrimination directly to Kick It Out. the group will then immediately act upon it along with the relevant authorities. Needless to say, this tool is fan-friendly; in addition, it avoids the issue of poor internet connections in stadiums.
How Many YouTube Views do YouTube Drag Shows Get?
- Collaboration with HOPE Not Hate for an education program
This program’s goal is to de-normalize any form of discriminatory language. In addition, it aims to empower silent bystanders to call out discrimination wherever they see it. Facebook and Kick It Out partnered with the England national teams Portsmouth and Derby County to deliver this pilot through a community of fan initiatives.
Facebook and Kick It Out plan to roll out the service more broadly so that it can reach millions of fans over the next coming years.
- Facebook’s work to proactively take down hate speech
During the last years that passed, Facebook has tripled the size of its safety and security team to 35,000. It also built artificial intelligence technology to help find and take down hateful content.
In 2017, Facebook was only able to remove 23 percent of hate speech on its platform. Between July and September this year, Facebook took action against 22.1 million pieces of hate speech content. 94.7 percent of those hate speech posts were taken down by Facebook even before anyone has reported it.
Facebook’s Statement on the Partnership
The Director of EMEA Sports Partnerships at Facebook, Jerry Newman, has something to say about working with Kick It Out. he said that Facebook’s collaboration with Kick It Out aims to give fans the power to call out discrimination when they see it. To simply put it, the partnership aims to replace silence with action. As many fans have said, taking a stand can be difficult. However, it is not impossible to stand up against discrimination. In fact, many fans are seeking ways to challenge others both personally and through social media.
Newman added that this is the time for every fan to feel empowered and take action. The aim of Facebook and Kick It Out’s new resources and tools is to make it even easier for football fans who come from all backgrounds to challenge and report incidences. It will also help in creating an environment where individuals can be free from abuse and discrimination.
Kick It Out’s Statement on its Partnership with Facebook
Kick It Out’s Chair Sanjay Bhandari also has a statement about its recent partnership with Facebook. He said that the Take A Stand campaign has a goal to discuss discrimination. It also aims to create a culture where everyone belongs, and people take personal responsibility for being part of the change.
He also added that it feels inspiring to see fans share their personal experiences about discrimination. This is because by speaking out and not tolerating abuse, Kick It Out hopes that it can inspire other people to do the same.
Moreover, Newman also noted that everyone has a role to play in challenging discrimination whenever they see it. This is regardless of their form of challenging discrimination is through calling it out or reporting it.
By keeping the conversation revolving around discrimination in football, Kick It Out hopes to turn people into activists. Through this, football can be a game that everyone can enjoy without the fear of abuse. The group also knows that social media can be a battlefield of hate. This is a combination of behavioral and technological problems. For this reason, the solutions that are needed must also be both behavioral and technical. This is why Kick It Out is working with social media companies to help resolve such problems while encouraging different behaviors.
Needless to say, the tools and resources that Facebook and Kick It Out worked together with will help them achieve all of their goals shortly.