The #MeToo campaign took social media by storm this week. Hundreds of thousands of people are sharing their stories of sexual harassment and abuse. The campaign was started 10 years ago by activist Tarana Burke, as a way to connect with survivors in underprivileged communities. Alyssa Milano tweeted out the message to use it this week, following the growing Harvey Weinstein scandal. The posts have been all over Twitter and Facebook, but some are concerned that they might not be reaching the right people. One user noticed the posts were conspicuously absent from her brother-in-law’s Facebook feed. Which begs the question: is Facebook hiding #MeToo posts from men? Well, it’s complicated.
User Lauren Stephenson became concerned with Facebook hiding #MeToo posts when she noticed the difference between her feed and that of her brother-in-law.
Curious why so few men have weighed in on the #MeToo hashtag? Maybe it's because Facebook hasn't shown them it. 😡Check…
Lauren said her feed was filled with post after post of #MeToo mentions. But when she checked her BIL Dan’s feed, she only found 7 posts in 8 minutes of scrolling. She wondered how that was even possible, given the saturation of posts in other feeds. The point of the campaign is to help make men aware of such a huge problem. If they aren’t seeing the posts, that’s a problem.
However, it appears as though it isn’t a deliberate move on Facebook’s part. Rather, it may have to do with their wonky algorithm.
According to Facebook’s Help page, your feed is greatly influenced by your activity and connections. You see things based on your interactions and interests. Other men who commented on Lauren’s post said they have seen plenty of #MeToo posts in their feeds. Perhaps Dan’s feed isn’t showing them based on his settings and activity. And there may be a reason for that, too. A lot of men have stayed relatively silent on the issue, for fear of highjacking a conversation about women.
If you feel like you’re not seeing enough #MeToo posts, check your settings. Make sure your feed is showing “Most Recent” instead of “Top Stories”.
And if you don’t feel comfortable sharing your #MeToo, or feel as if you’re not part of the conversation but still want to read the stories and be supportive, start liking the posts you see. You feed reflects what you interact on, so that will likely bring up more of them on your page.
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(Image: iStock / demaerre; Facebook / Lauren Stephenson )