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In recent years the use of anti-LGTBQIA+ rhetoric has skyrocketed around the world. In Spain, this has manifested as an increase in transphobic hate speech. Reactionary groups spread narratives of legal insecurity and far-right hoaxes to attack legislation guaranteeing the fundamental rights for trans people. Examples of such groups are “trans-exclusionary feminist” (TERF) groups, far right actors such as VOX and conservative religious groups like the Hazte Oír platform. Anti-trans hatred is used as a wedge issue to increase hate speech against the LGBTQIA+ community, feminism and rights legislation.
In this talk, we will review these issues and present research work where we use quantitative data analysis tools to characterize queerphobic hate networks on Twitter. Using data hoarding tools, such as t-hoarder, we collect data from transphobic Twitter trends. We use graph theoretic methods to find clusters of anti-trans reactionary users spreading anti-trans hate on Twitter. We analyze their behavior and the network structure of these groups. We find that a small and dedicated core of Twitter users displaying inauthentic behavior are responsible for most anti-trans hate on this social media platform. Mimicking alt-right strategies, these reactionary groups astroturf Twitter hashtags and boost them with inauthentic interaction to hijack the Twitter front page. Their behavior constitutes a hazard against trans people, as it can contribute to creating a distorted public opinion against trans rights.