Advertising is used to sell a brand by depicting a lifestyle or persona that one aspires to attain. We brand ourselves, or self-brand, in accordance to how we want to be perceived by others and to convey a particular message. This study addresses the following research questions: 1) How are men presented in advertisements in gay orientated magazines? 2) How do gay men portray themselves in online dating profiles? 3) Is there a relationship between the portrayal of the male body in advertisements in Out and self-portrayal on online dating profiles? 4) What messages are gay men portraying on online dating profiles? The results indicate a definite correlation between men self-branding and the advertisements in gay targeted magazines. This study is important to recognize how consumers use the Internet as a self-branding tool and to predict trends of future use on social media. A critical visual analysis is implemented and this study is based on using the social construction theory.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Online dating; Gays in advertising; Self-presentation; Branding (Marketing); Online identities
Communication and Media Technologies (MS)
Department, Program, or Center
School of Communication (CLA)
Giorgi, Gigina A., "Putting Your Best Face Forward: A Critical Visual Analysis of Gay Advertising Images and Self-Branding on Grindr" (2016). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
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