A simple hashtag is making its way across social media platforms today with viral speed. #MeToo has become a symbol of the scope of sexual harassment and assault.
Women and men have been encouraged to share the hashtag to show how widespread the issue of sexual abuse is, and how infrequently it’s addressed. The hashtag was started by actress Alyssa Milano.
“If you’ve been sexually harassed or assaulted write ‘me too’ as a reply to this tweet,” she wrote on Sunday.
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
By Monday, the tweet had made its way on to other social platforms, and the hashtag had gone viral, as people share stories of their sexual assault experiences.
— xoxo, Gaga (@ladygaga) October 15, 2017
Me too https://t.co/ScX67Kmmiy
— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) October 15, 2017
It’s taken me 13 years to say #MeToo .He is still protected by ‘family members’ in Brazil. They’ve told lies to papers to try to silence me.
— Kaya Scodelario (@kScodders) October 16, 2017
A proof that the problem is not in what was the person wearing or their attitude,I am covered from head to toe and still got harassed
— Manar💛 (@dreamer_Manar) October 16, 2017
Milano recently wrote about Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, and the issue of sexual assault.
“While I am sickened and angered over the disturbing accusations of Weinstein’s sexual predation and abuse of power, I’m happy – ecstatic even – that it has opened up a dialogue around the continued sexual harassment, objectification and degradation of women,” she wrote. “To the women who have suffered any form of abuse of power, I stand beside you.”
Her tweet has since inspired many to come forward, as #MeToo continues to trend online.
Last week, Montreal actress Erika Rosenbaum spoke out against Weinstein, claiming that he sexually harassed and assaulted her.
Rosenbaum spoke after The New York Times published an investigation on Weinstein’s abusive behaviour. Since then, over 30 women have come forward alleging the producer abused and sexually harassed them.
Weinstein has since been fired from The Weinstein Company.
To all the women sharing stories of sexual assault and sexual harassment, thank you for your bravery to speak up. You are not alone. #MeToo
— Women’s March (@womensmarch) October 15, 2017