Wikipedia claims pansexuality and bisexuality are the same thing


People marching with anBi, a bisexual organization, carry a bisexual flag in the LA Pride Parade. (Getty/ David McNew)

Wikipedia has been accused of “spreading misinformation” after incorrectly claiming that pansexuality and bisexuality are the same thing during Bisexual Visibility Month.

On Thursday (2 September), a Twitter user shared a screenshot of the Wikipedia page for bisexuality, which states that the sexual orientation is “also known as pansexuality“.

Later in the Wikipedia entry, it says: “Some sources state that bisexuality encompasses romantic or sexual attraction to all gender identities or that it is romantic or sexual attraction to a person irrespective of that person’s biological sex or gender, equating it to or rendering it interchangeable with pansexuality.”

Sharing the screenshot, the Twitter user wrote: “Why is Wikipedia so f**king bad at sexualities PANSEXUAL AND BISEXUAL ARE NOT THE SAME THING.”

Others picked up on the Wikipedia page, and took to social media to express their discomfort, especially as the page cannot be edited by most people because it is “semi-protected” to prevent vandalism.

One person wrote: “F**k Wikipedia, I’m genuinely so upset. Bisexual ≠ pansexual, bisexual is NOT an umbrella term. When will this be understood?”

Another pointed out: “The fact that this is all happening during Bi Visibility Month is absolutely disgusting.”

Wikipedia claimed that bisexuality is less ‘inclusive’ than pansexuality

But things went from bad to worse, when social media users found another glaring inaccuracy on the Wikipedia page for pansexuality.

“Because pansexual people are open to relationships with people who do not identify as strictly men or women, and pansexuality therefore rejects the gender binary it is considered by some to be a more inclusive term than bisexual,” the entry states.

The pansexuality entry is also locked, meaning most users are unable to edit the information.

PinkNews has approached Wikipedia for comment.

What is the difference between bisexuality and pansexuality?

Every queer person’s understanding of their sexuality and the label they choose to use is personal to them.

But generally, pansexuality, with the prefix “pan” meaning “all”, is defined as not being limited by sex or gender when it comes to attraction.

Bisexuality, on the other hand, means being attracted to multiple genders.

Advocate Robyn Ochs describes bisexuality as having “the potential to be attracted – romantically and/or sexually – to people of more than one sex and/or gender, not necessarily at the same time, not necessarily in the same way, and not necessarily to the same degree”.

Pansexuality and bisexuality are distinct sexual orientations, and are not interchangeable.





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