Blackout and Reverse Selfie: Two Campaigns Which Highlight the Negative Side to Social Media

The negative implications of social media have been put under the spotlight in recent months, and for good reason. Today’s blog discusses the recent social media blackout, and Dove’s Reverse Selfie campaign, which aims to combat self-esteem issues associated with negativity on social media.

Formula 1 Driver Lewis Hamilton participated in last weekend’s social media blackout. Image: Twitter.

Last weekend, the sporting world implemented a social media blackout to highlight the discrimination and abuse they receive online, in an attempt to shed light on the issue and pave the way for change. This originated within football, with football stars not posting or interacting on their social media channels for four days from Friday 30th April to Monday 3rd May. As messages of black screens circulated over social media over the weekend, more and more sporting teams and personalities joined in to show their support to sports personalities that endure abuse on social media every day. This included Formula One, where many teams and drivers participated in the social media blackout.

The blackout event has been positive in highlighting a significant social issue which requires attention to make social media trolls accountable, and to put an end to the abuse some receive on a daily basis. It further highlights that more needs to be done by social media sites like Instagram and Twitter to prevent and properly sanction trolls.

Dove’s Reverse Selfie Campaign, which is tackling self-esteem issues. Image: Creative Review.

The blackout event further links to Dove’s recent Reverse Selfie campaign which is part of their Self-Esteem project, a campaign which has been ongoing since 2004. The video depicts a teenage girl editing and filtering a photo of herself for social media but reverses the editing process, starting with the end product and gradually taking away the editing and effects on the image until the original, natural photo of the teenager is left. I felt the Reverse Selfie campaign was especially poignant as it highlights the pressures social media can place upon people- especially the younger members of our society. This is, again, another issue with social media that requires addressing in order to mitigate the negativity that exists on social media, which exasperates wider problems within society.

Both of these campaigns, which were launched over this past week, really brought home the negativity that is on social media, despite the many positives social media brings, in a range of different aspects. However, it absolutely brings home to me that more needs to be done to combat cyber crime and support those with self-esteem issues- whether that be legislation or a more open discussion within society, or a mixture of the two. What do you think upon watching Dove’s campaign and seeing the result of the social media blackout? What do you think can be done to help alleviate these negative issues which are associated with social media?

Thank you for reading.

To view Dove’s Reverse Selfie campaign, click here: https://youtu.be/z2T-Rh838GA.

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