In contemporary society there exists a huge amount of hatred towards multiple minorities, especially the ones who are against the society’s norms, one great example being the LGBTQ+ community. Additionally, this level of judgement is amplified in conservative and traditionalist countries where the community is rarely accepted, such as Romania. However, previous scholars have demonstrated in Western cultures that exposure to such diverse messages and images can influence the level of acceptance of a society. Simultaneously, in societies nowadays, the greatest form of exposure is through media representation, for instance TV shows, movies as well as advertisements. Therefore, this study focuses on the influence that advertisements in which people who are part of the LGBTQ+ spectrum can have on Romanian society and on the community based on the perceptions of two categories of sexual orientation, respectively straight and non-straight people. Due to the far-right legislation which defines Romanian society, it is undeniable that the LGBTQ+ community might be negatively seen by the general public. Additionally, due to the capitalist world that we live in, companies might perpetuate the whole movement which can worsen even more the situation in Romania. However, by conducting a thematic analysis, this study seeks to determine whether Romania society can follow a similar progressive trend as Western societies by promoting advertisements in which the LGBTQ+ is represented. With a data set derived from 12 interviews, the difference in perceptions of straight and non-straight participants is analysed. The findings from the analysis include the acknowledged negative perception of Romanian society towards the LGBTQ+ community, the internalised homophobia which occurs as an effect of this hatred and the harmful stereotypes present in the average Romanian’s belief system as well as in the Romanian advertising world. More than that, the acknowledged benefits of the LGBTQ+ community which materialise from the companies’ involvement as well as the constructive influence on the society consisted of the main findings of the research. Some of the limitations of the study which were found are related to the little diversity in regards to participants’ demographics which can influence their mentality as well as the limited number of advertisements present in Romania. Hence, a further study is vital which includes a larger number of participants from all around Romania and with distinct demographics such as region, education, gender, age and so on.

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Dr. Suzanna J. Opree
Media & Business
Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication

Andreea-Madalina Iorga. (2022, June 27). “Taste the Rainbow” An analysis of the perception towards LGBTQ+ advertisements in a conservative country. Media & Business. Retrieved from