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Social Brings Spotlight to Gender Equality

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Women are taking a stand against gender inequality and one of the most powerful platforms for the cause is social media. Making public otherwise ignored instances of gender inequality, social media has helped women take a stand and shine a light on even the most difficult situations.

Brand Spotlight: Under Armour

Under Armour’s #IWILLWHATIWANT campaign highlights professional females that have proven their prowess as women and ability to compete. They state that it is “a reminder that [women] don’t need permission, advice, or affirmations when you have WILL.” A celebration of women, the brand’s first YouTube videos of the series have each garnered several million views.

Featuring top-notch athletes such as Misty Copeland, Lindsay Vonn, and Brianna Cope, Under Armour’s campaign showcases their accomplishments. The most recent chapter presented supermodel Gisele Bündchen, working out with focus and poise while critical tweets and comments meant to tear her down populate her space.

The brand also created a digital experience for the UA community to join the conversation through fitness and athletics.  Participants are encouraged to track, analyze, and share their goals and accomplishments with other community members.

Celebrity Spotlight: India’s Deepika Padukone

In India, one of Bollywood’s greatest stars, Deepika Padukone, was featured in the top newspaper with comments about her cleavage. This launched a response from Deepika on Twitter where she proclaimed, “Yes! I AM a Woman. I have breasts and cleavage! You got a problem!!??”

The community offered resounding support for the idol as the hashtag #ISupportDeepikaPadukone began trending. Many fans and females voiced their disappointment, calling The Times of India a disgrace.

Turning a platform typically used to connect with friends, news sources, and celebrities, the actress has utilized the broad support system to gain traction on the issue of women and engrained sexism in India.

Political Spotlight: The United Nations

With the recent appointment of Emma Watson as UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador, further attention has come to the international debate surrounding gender inequality. A speech given by Watson last week emphasized the importance of women and men aligning to take a stand against gender inequality. In an attempt to remove the stigma from the term “feminism,” Watson urged listeners to join her in the fight for women’s rights. This launched the UN into its introduction of the HeForShe campaign as the videos of her speech have now garnered over four million views and is gaining traction.

HeForShe, “a Solidarity Movement for Gender Inequality,” ignited by UN Women calls all people across all borders to stand united and commit to gender equality. You can take the pledge on the website and share via social media. #HeForShe content is aggregated on the site to encourage community involvement.

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Photo Source: HeForShe.org

Feminism is no new subject, but the conversational presence on social media is more apparent than ever. Brands are empowering women to be the best they can be, eliminate preconceived notions of strength, and go further. Celebrities are taking a stand against engrained sexist norms that degrade the female. Women are asking men to join them as gender inequality affects all people forced to grapple with stereotypes. And women who have been affected by gender inequality are taking back their voice and publicizing their experiences in an attempt to raise awareness and induce change.

The use of Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube proves the versatility of the conversation and reveals strong interest in the movement for gender equality. Social media has become more than a space for connecting and sharing, it has become a platform for change.

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