“I heard a woman becomes herself the first time she speaks without permission. Then every word out her mouth, a riot. Say beautiful, and point to the map of your body. Say brave, and wear your skin like a gown.” This is how Latinx poet Denice Frohman opens her brilliant poem, which narrates Twitter’s latest ad campaign #HereWeAre.
#HereWeAre, meant to celebrate the power of women, has drawn merited criticism since its debut on Oscars night (Mar. 4). The one-minute clip aired during the 90th Academy Awards and features appearances by the likes of director Ava DuVernay and actor Issa Rae.
— Twitter (@Twitter) March 5, 2018
Shot in black-and-white with women of all shapes and backgrounds, the commercial sparked outcry as many users have called bullsh**t on the hypocrisy of Twitter promoting female solidarity while it plays bystander to all the misogyny, harassment and anti-woman rhetoric that plagues the social media platform daily.
“How about you spend the money you used on this ad to hire moderators to kick accounts that terrorize women off your platform? How about you hire more engineers who aren’t men to build your platform so that you don’t have giant blind spots putting users at risk?” begs TEDTalks editor, Ella Dawson. In other words: Twitter can talk the talk, but can it walk the walk?
How about you spend the money you used on this ad to hire moderators to kick accounts that terrorize women off your platform?
— ella dawson (@brosandprose) March 5, 2018
Many more followed suit. See how other naysayers are reacting to Twitter’s latest campaign.
The irony of progressives at Twitter promoting the #HereWeAre hashtag to laud the accomplishments of women while verified users like @the_moviebob vilify and demean women like @DLoesch on their very platform for having the wrong opinions.
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) March 6, 2018
lol “stand with women”? like when I was getting DMd pics of me photoshopped to look like Hitler was sexually assaulting me, and you found none of those accounts in violation of TOS–and then suspended *me* for clapping back? #HereWeAre ? #WeHaveBeenHere, where tf have YOU been??! https://t.co/JuEIHwqwbl
— Coffee Spoonie (@coffeespoonie) March 5, 2018
And for @Twitter to have the unmitigated GALL to treat it like it is some kind of Homeric heroes journey that it has been so bad rather than a neglect and disrespect for women who don’t get soft gel photos ? Is why we are here #hereweare
— Sydette (@Blackamazon) March 5, 2018
— Jessica Valenti (@JessicaValenti) March 5, 2018
Don’t make campaigns about diversity, BE diverse. Don’t say you want to ‘make our voices heard’: redesign your platform to get rid of the harassers and abusers that shut down our voices. Hire women/POC into your leadership and engineering ranks so THEY can say #hereweare https://t.co/08MULMKZ6h
— Cindy Gallop (@cindygallop) March 5, 2018
twitter: “we stand with women and support making their voices and presence heard and known”
also twitter: *refuses to suspend people harassing women, threatening women, creating parody accounts to mock women, and suspends women who are mass-reported by trolls* #hereweare https://t.co/iwhnsd95wo
— diane alston (@dianelyssa) March 5, 2018