Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Some things deserve ridicule

Jennifer McCreight is an overnight internet and television sensation with her April 26 Boobquake protest against Iranian cleric Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi’s claim that promiscuous women were to blame for earthquakes. Her Facebook group for the event has 205,000 members. While there is no doubt an attraction for some people beyond the political and theological protest it does demonstrate the power of a social media campaign with a simple clear message.

There are of course some ethical feminist issues with the objectification of womens bodies as a tool for protest. Another Facebook group has been set up in response: Brainquake. This groups sponsors are urging women to show off their brains and their accomplishments to challenge Iranian fear of women's intelligence. Sally Benz over at Feministe sees this response as equally problematic as she believes it denies female sexuality.

The power of internet protest to effect change has already been proven. Think back to our New Zealand Internet Blackout protest against s92a. This is why we must be ever vigilant against attempts by government or commercial interests to control our access e.g. The Great Firewall of Australia.

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