Social media may be brilliant in bringing people together to share their passions. After all, the vibrant Girl Crew, a Dublin-based organization that helps women connect with like-minded souls to hot up gigs and events together, was born on Tinder, of all places. I even know of one couple who are getting married next month and can trace their first real-life meeting to a ‘tweet-up’.
However, social media can sometimes be a cutting and brutal place. Non-fiction writer Jon Ronson’s next book looks at the phenomenon of internet shaming and one bad joke can tear a person’s life apart. Sometimes getting a notification that you are trending can lead to your career being dismantled and your name forever tainted. Various female writers have found themselves subject to death threats for daring to voice an opinion that is even slightly critical of patriarchal notions. The rapper Iggy Azalea left Twitter last week after an onslaught of users critiqued her figure following invasive paparazzi photos. We wrote about Iggy’s decision here.
The latest Dove campaign looks at how this cyberbullying is affecting women’s body image. If the toned and slim Iggy Azalea feels bad, can you imagine how the rest of the world feels about their body?
Dove says that last year women sent over 5 million negative Tweets about beauty and body image, “but it only takes one positive Tweet to start a trend.” It’s this kind of empowered thinking that is behind their latest campaign, #SpeakBeautiful. The beauty brand is joining forces with Twitter to change the way we talk about beauty on social media. One tweet might set up a domino effect of self-kindess and institute social change. The video is a visual representation of how this kind of thinking could get trending.
Have a watch – and never tweet disparagingly about your thighs again.
Follow Jeanne Sutton on Twitter @jeannedesutun
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