Twitter may have been the place where #MeToo gained traction, and journalism was the place where many workplace terrorists abused women, but Amnesty International has decreed that Twitter is bad for women.
Where was Amnesty when women were abused in newsrooms, denied promotions or serious beats? Where were they when they were portrayed as brainless and helpless vixens who were dishonest or just plain crazy?
Nowhere to be found, naturally.
Women around the world have been abused and ignored by the press. Amnesty was no help.
But unlike traditional media outlets, Twitter is not a one-way form of it: it is two-way, and it gives women the power to fight back, organize, and circumvent abuse, which is far more than what women before social media ever had.
This report re-victimizes women, and slants a narrative to make it sound as if women cannot turn the tables (they did with #MeToo), and fight fire with any element they chose. Life is not going to be easy, and you will always have boors, but let’s not gloss over the advantages of social media.
It requires work, as does everything else. This is the one case where Amnesty would have been far better off to show how women can overcome the obstacles to break barriers with a very powerful tool, instead of relying on a rote patriarchal narrative.
I am not one of those people who cares for Twitter (it takes work and focus, and I prefer to invest both in this element rather than the tweet), I see that people such as Rose McGowan did just fine by it; so it is possible.
It is a wasted resource on many levels, and very few people can make it work — one even used it to become president of a country — but discouraging women from participating and sticking it out when the going gets tough isn’t helpful. Strategy would help.
I said this was the year where social media was going to get pummelled — and I was right…