Friday, March 20, 2015

Monica Lewinsky Talks Cyber-bulling

Monica Lewinsky became very well-known after one of the biggest sex-scandals of our time with then-president Bill Clinton. She was called many things online, such a slut, whore, home-wrecker, bimbo, etc. This all happened during a time when the Internet was flourishing and many people began to use social media on the Internet to communicate with one another.

She went through very tough times because during the late 90s (the digital revolution), information had never been spread as quickly as it did to so many strangers at once. She was the main target for cyber-bullying and as an activist now she can speak for those who have been cyber-bullied.

She said that people are hungry for gossip on the Internet and will sometimes do anything to find out the latest gossip. Today it is becoming easier to find gossip, which makes it easier for rumors to spread and for people to branded in ways they don't prefer to be. The Internet has this amazing way of connecting people from all over the world, but the nonstop information is what makes people so hungry to find out more.

Lewinsky said she was branded as being a slut from people she barely knew. One issue was how the media portrayed her. People don't see the real stories or the real people behind the story because sometimes all the media cares about is traffic on their sites and readership. Lewinsky encouraged people at a TED Talks event to be media "upstanders" instead of bystanders and show the media that public humiliation does drive clicks, but can ruin the person whose voice is often not heard. It's not worth it because it ultimately keeps feeding a society that is greedy for more gossip instead of information that actually matters. We see this all the time today and it's only making media companies richer and us...well...I think it's honestly making us less aware of important news that affects us.

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