It’s very easy to dismiss social media as unimportant or superficial, but more and more it becomes the thing that connects us no matter where we are. I use Facebook, and in fact Facebook became available to non-college students when I was a junior in High School so I was one of the first in the boom of people when Facebook expanded beyond the campus. I’ve used it to keep in touch with out of town friends, promote our silly little blog, and vent after a frustrating day or two. Then twitter came along and I decided not to jump on that bandwagon. I don’t need two spaces to express thoughts I otherwise wouldn’t bother to say out loud. But then, I read about 6 books on self-publishing and every single one said to have a strong presence on social media or don’t bother. So I signed up for twitter.
I liked the #hashtags, and having to fit all of my hilarious ideas in 140 characters was novel. For about a year I had 13 followers. Posting things to twitter felt a lot like talking to myself, which was fine because I think I’m awesome and I got a laugh out of what I tweeted. Then I started this blog (I used to have another one and it was meh) and my followers went up. I started tweeting while important things were happening and they went up some more. Then I visited a friend’s podcast and I got 8 new followers all in one day. Now I am sitting at a little over 50 followers (woot), which still isn’t much compared to a lot of other people but it works just fine for me.
Then, something very terrible happened and out of it came the #YesAllWomen hashtag, and it was the first time that twitter felt really important to me. It was the first time I didn’t use it to tell a joke or try to convince Nathan Fillion that he should tweet me back. It was the first time I have seen so many women pull together to express the things they go through everyday.
Not all of their problems are my problems, and the things I considered posting might not be their problems but they do come from the same place. A place that stems from being talked down to or patronized since as long as I can remember and I’m sure much longer for others. And not by every man or even most men but sometimes and often enough that each women had an experience like mine. Since #YesAllWomen went viral I have gone back and clicked on it a few times just to see what was new, and not because I wanted to lament the treatment of women, but because it gave me a sense of community. The things that bother me also bothers others and in that there is a strength that might bring about a sense of change. Just for that hope and for that community I am grateful to social media and silly hashtags and to hopefully one day getting a response from Nathan Fillion.
You can follow Amy @AmySeaMAMMALn and you can see what she has to say about feminism here