Twitter has decided to try a bold new marketing move in honor of the Time’s Up movement. Using the hashtag #HereWeAre, Denise Frohman performs an empowering, female-centric poem. There is no music, only camera shots that cut between women of various races, ages, and sizes.
And Denice’s poem is powerful. People took to social media almost instantly to discuss how much of a punch it packed when they saw it for the first time. That is, until they realized it was an ad for Twitter.
“I legit thought it was a Dove ad from their Real Beauty campaign,” wrote Twitter user Gloria Beach. “Shouldn’t Twitter ads be more like, ‘Say whatever the hell you want; we don’t care?’ Some people can get away with threatening nuclear war with North Korea and not get banned.”
The ad has been met with mixed reviews. Many people have been praising Twitter for recognizing its problems and trying to do something about them. Others, however, see the ad as hypocritical, believing Twitter doesn’t do enough to protect its members – especially women – from harassment.
In the past year, Twitter has received criticism for how it deals with cybersecurity issues like trolling and bullying. Last October, the hashtag #WomenBoycottTwitter trended due to these concerns. Some argue that although Twitter publically supports women, its enforcement of its policies shows that it has a long way to go.
Beach continued her condemnation of the ad: “It’s easy enough to find a talented poet and have her recite a few verses. It’s easy to use a grayscale filter to make an ad look dramatic. It’s easy to find a diverse cast to get your message across. What’s less easy is actually enforcing those policies.”
Facebook user Emily Herschel says she stays away from Twitter because of how it handles harassment. “I was like, oh, congrats; you made an ad about women’s empowerment and tried to gain momentum from the Time’s Up movement. Let’s not get caught up in how powerful the ad is. Ads exist for one reason and one reason only: to make money. Let’s not pretend for a second that any social media platform actually cares about us.”
Others, however, were more optimistic.
“I think it’s a step in the right direction,” said Joanna Kim. “Obviously Twitter has a long way to go, but I think the people behind it have their users’ best interests at heart.”
Twitter’s CMO, Leslie Berland, responded to fans’ concerns over the ad, and said the company knows it has problems, and is working to reverse them.
“I mean, at least they’re recognizing they have problems,” said Kim. “It’s certainly not as tone-deaf as that Kylie Jenner Pepsi ad from last year. At least it serves a purpose and isn’t just some watered-down pseudo-cause that no one can figure out.”
When asked what one thing Twitter could do to make their platform safer for women, both Beach and Kim gave the same answer: “Ban Donald Trump.”
This post was created with the help of Grammarly.
Photo Credit: Bernard Goldbach