Saturday, September 22, 2018

No Takers

So there was (note the use of the past tense) a discussion about what a sincere apology for having been abusive to women might look like, and one of the participants pondered:

I wonder if there was a hashtag for men to admit they've wronged women in the past if that would be a positive thing, or if it would be seen as an excuse because "every guy has done it."
Well it turns out, we don't have to speculate about that: such a hashtag already exists: It's hashtag IDidThat. There's also hashtag HowIWillChange.

Now, I'm not on Twitter or Facebook, so I don't actually know how this is working out over there. On Google+, while there are a few links to the BBC article on this (the one that I read which clued me into it), most of the uses of the hashtag are people referencing food they made/ate, weight loss/exercise, hairstyles and the occasional silly thing they've done. It didn't come up in the conversation being had, perhaps because the original poster locked comments after a few hours, but it sort of struck me that no-one had heard of this. Granted, I knew because I read the BBC. But perhaps that's the point - it seems to be more of a thing in Europe. Will it catch on here? Part of me says, "I doubt it."

Having a bull's-eye on your forehead is one thing. Painting it there yourself is likely quite another, and while most people don't spend their time worrying about the Internet Mobs, I suspect that they're leery of jumping out into the street and shouting to those "mobs": "Hey! Over here! Come get me!"

When it first occurred to me to search out hashtag IDidThat to see if it was going anywhere, it was a couple of days after the BBC article ran, which was nearly a year ago. When I looked again today, no one had actually used the hashtag to confess to having wronged a woman in their past. And I didn't expect that anyone would have.

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