Instagram Communities: A culture of misogyny

Havana Garrett, Editor in Chief

Social media has been bringing people together for many years, bridging the gap between different groups and creating a space that works for everyone. On top of being a location for photo sharing, Instagram is a place for discussion and activism.

 A popular Instagram page called ‘feminist’ posts media and graphics often showcasing the struggles of being a woman in a world designed for men, but also posts about other important topics such as the black lives matter movement. At first, the page seems like a completely positive space for people to use their voices and feel seen: until you reach the comments. The comment section is filled with hateful statements about women, ranging from one word answers to complete paragraphs. The contrast between a post uplifting women followed directly by extreme hateful language is truly harrowing. 

There is a community of misogynists on Instagram that tag their photos under hashtags that berate women, these photos usually consist of memes that paint feminism as a liberal political issue and graphics that discourage feminism. This is a community that refers to women as dishwashers and other derogatory terms. One page takes the photos of people who commented against them and posts them for their followers to see and comment on, these comments can be incredibly hateful and demeaning. 

Social media can bring out some very unsettling truths about how we function. The problem that is so prevalent on Instagram is that when surrounded by only like minded people, you lack understanding for how the other side functions. In these misogynistic groups, the creators surround themselves with people who think exactly the same as them which causes these ideas to grow and build and the outcome is an incredibly hostile environment and attitude towards women. 

Social media needs to be more than a place where people can come together, it needs to be a place where people can feel safe. Feminism isn’t anything that has to be feared or seen as a threat, it simply means that you believe that men and women are equal and should have equal rights.