In wake of all the Harvey Weinstein stories that've emerged over the past week, #MeToo sends a powerful message from social media. Dozens of women came forward and revealed that big-time movie producer, Harvey Weinstein, had sexually harassed them or made them feel physically and emotionally unwell.
The stories poured in with similar formulas - almost all of them involving Weinstein, a hotel and the proposal of a shoulder rub. Women around the internet sympathized with the victims, sharing their stories of similar sexually inappropriate behaviour from a co-worker or higher-up.
Freelance writer Anne Donahue sparked a conversation early last week, prompting female followers with the question, "When did you meet your Harvey Weinstein?"
When did you meet YOUR Harvey Weinstein? I'll go first: I was a 17-yr-old co-op student and he insisted on massaging my shoulders as I typed— Anne T. Donahue (@annetdonahue) October 5, 2017
As women typed their responses, many shared disturbing accounts of inappropriate and illegal behaviour from their youth.
Grabby driving instructor who would tell girls they weren't going to get their license unless they kissed him. We all warned one another.— Kat Kinsman (@kittenwithawhip) October 7, 2017
he trapped me in a bathroom and tried to get me to touch his dick even after i begged him to leave. reeeeal champ. he still has a job.— raina douris (@RahRahRaina) October 5, 2017
In college working on an indie film. I was walking by a producer and he said “I can’t take it anymore” and shoved his hand down my pants.— Francesca Hogi (@DearFranny) October 5, 2017
With sexual assault becoming a louder and louder topic of conversation, celebrities chimed in with their experiences. Alyssa Milano shared this image on Twitter, prompting women to use the hashtag #MeToo to demonstrate how many women have fallen victim to assault and harassment.
If you’ve been sexually harassed or assaulted write ‘me too’ as a reply to this tweet. pic.twitter.com/k2oeCiUf9n— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) October 15, 2017
Milano received millions of responses, prompting women to share the hashtag #MeToo on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
It’s not okay if he’s a friend, family member, or complete stranger. It’s not okay if he’s a man of power or wealth. It’s never okay #MeToo— kate (@_katehowe) October 16, 2017
Some of us shared our stories. There are millions who are still afraid and it doesn't mean their story isn't there. #MeToo— Palak ヅ | ♥ (@skillsofharry) October 16, 2017
#MeToo because i have more friends who have been sexually assaulted than i can count with my fingers on both hands— tintin (@K_Starcalmdown) October 16, 2017
To date, over 500,000 tweets have been shared with #MeToo, shedding light on an often quieted societal issue. It is our sincere hope that these stories will help bring awareness to the international issue that is sexual assault and harassment.