Journalist slams 'black and white selfie challenge' loved by celebs

Critics slam ‘vacuous’ black and white selfie challenge sweeping social media amid claims it’s been hijacked a trend created to raise awareness of femidice in Turkey

  • Kat Brown, from south London, said the vague campaign lacked a call to action
  • Journalist slammed #challengeaccepted campaign saying it wasn’t supportive
  •  Host Rochelle Humes admitted she didn’t realise it was part of a bigger campaign when she shared a selfie 

A journalist has slammed the ‘black and white’ selfie challenge saying that the Wonderbra had done more to support women than the social media challenge. 

This week Instagram feeds were flooded black and white selfies taken by women with vague captions about supporting each other, with the aim of empowerment.

But the campaign quickly backfired because nobody is clear on whether there’s a political purpose behind it or not. 

Some have claimed that it has been hijacked after women in Turkey started posting black and white images to raise awareness of femicide. 

Speaking to Rochelle Humes and Dermot O’Leary on This Morning, from her home in south London journalist Kat Brown (pictured) said she consider posting a black and white snap from an old Wonderbra campaign as that’s doing more to support women.

Speaking to This Morning hosts Rochelle Humes and Dermot O’Leary  from her home in south London journalist Kat Brown said she consider posting a black and white snap from an old  Wonderbra campaign because that’s doing more to support women.   

‘The issue with this is, as you say, it’s not really a campaign, it’s a hashtag that’s been used several times before,’ she explained.

‘Back in 2016 it was used for that awfully nebulous “cancer awareness” which anyone who’s experienced cancer loathes because raising awareness doesn’t do anything.

‘Social media journalist Taylor Lorenz at the New York Times was speaking to Instagram about how it’s being used by women in Turkey to highlight their murder. 

Host Rochelle Humes, who posted a black and white selfie to her Instagram, admitted she didn’t realise it was a campaign at first. Pictured is her image

 The show was hosted by Rochelle Humes (right) and Dermot O’Leary (left) who discussed whether the selfie challenge was vain or a celebration

‘My issue is 100 per cent not with women posting pictures, one of our roles as loyal friends and women is to post “Yes Queen and three fire emojis” anytime a friends posts a gorgeous picture.

‘My issue is that it feels like the old days of Facebook when somebody, usually an aunt of somebody, would post one of the chain mails 

‘There are so many important hashtags we could be looking at instead. 

Kat (pictured) said that she doesn’t have an issue with women posting pictures, but the lack of the call to action amid the photos

‘Jennifer Aniston posted a picture and said ‘I don’t really understand what this challenge is about, but register to vote

‘Or Alexa Chung who posted a pictured of Breonna Taylor who was murdered in the states by three police men.

‘There’s no defined call to action in this hashtag, which is why people are making up their own.   

Host Rochelle Humes, who posted a picture, admitted she didn’t realise it was a campaign at first.

TV presenter Anna Williamson, who spoke via videolink from her home in Hertfordshire, told the hosts that she posted a selfie because it’s been a ‘very challenging and negative time for a lot of people’. He selfie is pictured

 ‘Like a lot of people on Instagram, I got nominated. It was sort of a generic message. I just thought, “How lovely, women backing other women”. 

‘As a lot of people did, I posted my picture, and I didn’t realise until the day that there was part of a bigger image.’

TV presenter Anna Williamson, who spoke via videolink from her home in Hertfordshire, told the hosts that she posted a selfie because it’s been a ‘very challenging and negative time for a lot of people’.   

Alexa Chung shared a pictured with the hashtag. Instead of a selfie she shared an image of Breonna Taylor, an Amerian paramedic who was shot by police while she slept in her bed 

‘I’m so supportive on the campaigns, I think there’s great positive people, I’ve got fellow women’s backs, then we find out it’s about Turkish femicide, I’ve now educated myself on that

‘When I got these in my inbox, I thought it was vacuous but when I got my 12th, 13th nomination it made me feel special, I thought: “Yay, thank you for making me feel less rubbish today”.’ 

Millions of women who have posted flattering black-and-white photos of themselves this week using the hashtags #WomenSupportingWomen and #ChallengeAccepted in the name of female empowerment.

Celebrities such as Reese Witherspoon, Khloe Kardashian, Eva Longoria, Jennifer Aniston, and Kelly Rowland have all taken part in the social media ‘challenge,’ though many have found Ivanka’s participation to be problematic for a number of reasons.

Friends star Jennifer Aniston said that she didn’t understand the challenge but encouraged her followers to register to vote

New York Times writer Taylor Lorenz pointed out that people have been sharing black-and-white photos using the #ChallengeAccepted hashtag since 2016, including a campaign to raise awareness for cancer.

A representative from Instagram told The New York Times that the earliest post for ‘this current cycle of the challenge’ was shared a week and a half ago by Brazilian journalist Ana Paula Padrão.

Others have claimed that the trend was recently started in Turkey when women began sharing black-and-white photos to raise awareness about femicide and domestic violence.

Many have participated in the challenge without question simply because they were nominated by their friends, and the recent backlash has even led some, including Jennifer Love Hewitt, to delete their #ChallengeAccepted posts.

What is happening to women in Turkey?  

Women in Turkey have come together in recent days to protest domestic violence and demand change from the government. 

Public outrage erupted after the murder of Turkish student Pinar Gültekin  by her ex-boyfriend Cemal Metin Avci has sparked outrage in Turkey.

Protesters asking the Erdogan government to take a stand against violence against women have been met with tear gas and rubber bullets. 

The Guardian reported that the number of 474 women who were murdered in Turkey in 2019 was set to double in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown.  

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