STREAM
IQ2 Debate

DATE & TIME
05 JUNE 2018

LOCATION
SYDNEY TOWN HALL

Is online activism a force for good?

Has #MeToo gone too far, labelling bad sex as serious assaults? Or has it not gone far enough to put criminal men behind bars?

It’s the biggest feminist movement ever. United by social media, #MeToo has brought to light just how pervasive sexual harassment is. But is it really affecting sustained behavioural change? Or will it fizzle out, taking out innocent people in the process?

United by social media and shared experiences of harassment and assault, women across the globe are collaborating to create the biggest feminist movement ever. It began in the creative industries with the fall of Hollywood giant Harvey Weinstein. Actress Alyssa Milano’s clarion call for women to tweet #MeToo showed how prevalent the problem was. Next came Australia’s television gardening hero Don Burke. Then comedian Aziz Ansari and “Grace” complicated the movement, dividing opinion on what is abuse and “bad sex” and where women’s agency and vulnerability starts and ends.

On 5 June 2018, The Ethics Centre and Vivid Ideas presented a special IQ2 debate to a record-breaking crowd of over 1400 people. We asked our speakers and audience: Is #MeToo bonding women together to create an inspirational force to affect behavioural change, or is it pitting woman against woman and driving feminism’s efforts backward?

Catch up

Didn’t make it on the night? The complete debate is available for streaming on YouTube. Just hit play on the viewer below.

Speakers

Libby-Jane Charleston

is an author and journalist. The former model and associate editor of Huffington Post AU has published books, worked as a newspaper columnist, and been a television producer and reporter with every Australian network. She was an early responder to the #MeToo movement, writing, ‘Why I’m Not Joining The #MeToo Hashtag Even Though I Was Sexually Harassed’.

Michael Salter

is a criminologist whose research specialises in gendered violence, sexual assault, and complex trauma. His book Crime, Justice and Social Media explores online harassment and social media justice campaigns. Michael sits on the Board of Directors of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation and is a senior lecturer in criminology at Western Sydney University.

Jeanette Francis

also known as Jan Fran, is a journalist and host of SBSVICELAND’s, The Feed. She has shot and produced documentaries and news and current affairs programming across the globe, including Bangladesh, Uganda, and the United States. One of Jeanette’s professional interests is women’s issues and her role has seen her address the #MeToo movement.

Benjamin Law

has a PhD in creative writing and is a writer of books, screenplays, essays, and columns. He authored The Family Law, which was turned into a television series, and Gaysia: Adventures in the Queer East. Benjamin started a hashtag for men in response to #MeToo that took off around the world, #HowIWillChange.

Photo gallery

Did you come along to the event on 5 June? Check out our gallery for all the action on the night.

Who is it for?


  • THE ACTIVIST
  • THE DIGITAL NATIVE
  • THE JOURNALIST

What you'll take away


  • 01A REALIST’S TAKE ON SOCIAL MEDIA ACTIVISM
  • 02A RENEWED COMMITMENT TO ENDING GENDER VIOLENCE
  • 03AN APPRECIATION FOR NUANCE THAT IDEOLOGUES MISS