#Metoo: Hol­ly­wood Scan­dal Turns into Global Move­ment Against Sex­ual Ha­rass­ment


If you’ve been any­where on so­cial me­dia for the past cou­ple months, then you must’ve been fol­low­ing up on the mul­ti­ple sex­ual ha­rass­ment al­le­ga­tions against Amer­i­can movie pro­ducer Har­vey Weis­ntein, whose fall from grace be­gan with a New York Times ar­ti­cle pub­lished on Oc­to­ber 5 and has been mak­ing rounds in Hol­ly­wood ever since, with more and more women, in­clud­ing A-list ac­tresses, com­ing for­ward to re­veal they were sex­u­ally ha­rassed or as­saulted by We­in­stein. In the wake of the snow­balling scan­dal, #Metoo, a two-word hash­tag de­nounc­ing sex­ual as­sault spread vi­rally on so­cial me­dia in over 85 dif­fer­ent coun­try. The hash­tag, ini­tially at­trib­uted to a phrase coined in 2006 by so­cial ac­tivist Tarana Burke­was as part of a grass­root women em­pow­er­ment cam­paign, was first pop­u­lar­ized in Oc­to­ber by Amer­i­can ac­tress and ac­tivist Alyssa Mi­lano who en­cour­aged women to spread the phrase and share their per­sonal sex­ual ha­rass­ment ex­pe­ri­ences in an ef­fort to raise aware­ness on the preva­lence and mag­ni­tude of the prob­lem in to­day’s so­ci­eties. Since then, mil­lions of peo­ple, in­clud­ing pub­lic fig­ures, ac­tivists and celebri­ties, have tweeted their per­sonal sto­ries and sup­port mes­sages un­der the hash­tag, which does not only stand as one of 2017’s most vi­ral hash­tags, but has also turned into a global move­ment pi­o­neer­ing women em­pow­er­ment and so­cial change.

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