Banning of Rose McGowan prompts a Twitter boycott by feminists

(Photograph: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)


NEW YORK – American actress and singer Rose McGowan has been at the forefront of calling out Harvey Weinstein’s alleged decades of sexual harassment and abuse (link). McGowan is just one of the women whose stories are only now coming out. Following on from a temporary suspension from Twitter on which she had found her voice, actors and activists are calling for users to boycott Twitter for a day, on Friday, 13 October, by using hashtag #WomanBoycottTwitter on the platform.

Screenshot of Twitter boycott activity

#WomenBoycottTwitter started at midnight in New York and was to last the duration of Friday 13 October.

Heidi Moore, an editor and consultant, was among the first to adopt the idea. Moore said the boycott was a means of shedding light on the “appalling abuse” of women on Twitter, according to The Guardian.

A number of high-profile celebrities have since joined in the movement. Chrissy Teigen, John Cusack, Anna Paquin and McGowan’s Charmed co-star Alyssa Milano will join other Twitter users in solidarity with McGowan and those who have experienced harassment online.

McGowan’s Twitter account has since been unlocked, but is expected to stay silent for the 24-hour protest.

What caused the suspension was a McGowan’s tweet: “Ben Affleck f*** off”. The Guardian, along with many feminists, compare the degree of aggression with American President Donald Trump’s tweets, postulating that Twitter’s terms of service are vague and unfair, particularly when it comes to the subject of women’s rights.

Some of the examples are: