#WomenBoycottTwitter, Supporting Rose McGowanBy ANNA CODREA-RADO and AMIE TSANGOCT. 13, 2017
PhotoTwitter users are going silent on Friday to protest the suspension of Rose McGowan’s account.CreditAn Rong Xu for The New York Times Activists, celebrities and journalists joined a boycott of Twitter on Friday to protest the social media platform’s suspending of the account of the actress Rose McGowan, a vocal critic of the film producer Harvey Weinstein over his alleged sexual harassment and assaults of women.
The boycott started at midnight Thursday in New York and was set to last all day. Many of those who were taking part signified their participation with the hashtag #WomenBoycottTwitter.
The idea came from Kelly Ellis, a software engineer, who posted a message proposing that, in response to Ms. McGowan’s suspension, people should consider boycotting the platform.
“#WomenBoycottTwitter Friday, October 13th,” she wrote. “In solidarity w @rosemcgowan and all the victims of hate and harassment Twitter fails to support.”
#WomenBoycottTwitter Friday, October 13th. In solidarity w @rosemcgowan and all the victims of hate and harassment Twitter fails to support. https://t.co/G0my9EyKpQ
— Kelly Ellis (@justkelly_ok) Oct. 12, 2017Ms. McGowan said on Wednesday that Twitter had locked her account over what the company said were violations of its terms of service. Twitter did not initially explain its decision, but said later than it had temporarily suspended Ms. McGowan’s account because one of her messages had included a personal phone number in violation of its rules.
Continue reading the main storyRELATED COVERAGE
While those boycotting Twitter over its move against Ms. McGowan said they were highlighting the wider issue of women being abused online, not everyone felt it was an appropriate form of protest.
“I understand the idea behind #WomenBoycottTwitter but I don’t personally agree that silence is the right protest to being silenced,” tweeted @kateleth.
The director Ava DuVernay’s criticism was more pointed. She noted that women of color had not received similar support when they had problems on the platform.
“Calling white women allies to recognize conflict of #WomenBoycottTwitter for women of color who haven’t received support on similar issues,” wrote Ms. DuVernay, the director of “Selma,” who has criticized Hollywood for its lack of inclusivity.
Among those joining the boycott were Ayssa Milano, Ms. McGowan’s co-star in the TV series “Charmed”; the model Chrissy Teigen; the actors John Cusack, Debra Messing, Anna Paquin and Mark Ruffalo; and the writer Cheryl Strayed.
In in :) https://t.co/ylX1BQBwDs
— John Cusack (@johncusack) Oct. 13, 2017Tomorrow (Friday the 13th) will be the first day in over 10 years that I won’t tweet. Join me. #WomenBoycottTwitterpic.twitter.com/xoEt5Bwj5s
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) Oct. 13, 2017Tomorrow I follow the Women. #WomenBoycottTwitter
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) Oct. 13, 2017“I love this platform, but it’s time to do better. See you all in 24 hours,” tweeted Brianna Wu, a congressional candidate.
I stand with #WomenBoycottTwitter. I love this platform, but it’s time to do better. See you all in 24 hours. ❤️
— Brianna Wu (@Spacekatgal) Oct. 13, 2017.
Another user, Suzy Tobin, tweeted that she would not be taking part because, as a victim of sexual assault, she wanted to be heard. “Because it happens too much & its frightening to speak up. But we have to start talking about it,” she added.
1/2 I’m not going to #WomenBoycottTwitter because I want to be heard. I was a victim of sexual assault. By someone I knew. And I never talk
— Suzy Tobin (@suzykzr) Oct. 13, 2017“Not joining in on #WomenBoycottTwitter because I don’t see the point in silent protest. I believe in loud annoyance,” said a further user, @AineCarson1. Another encouraged women to raise their voices, tweeting that “being silent is sometimes the worst thing to do.”
Calling white women allies to recognize conflict of #WomenBoycottTwitter for women of color who haven't received support on similar issues.
— Ava DuVernay (@ava) Oct. 13, 2017When asked to comment on Friday, a Twitter press officer pointed to the company’s statement about why it had locked Ms. McGowan’s account.
Twitter is proud to empower and support the voices on our platform, especially those that speak truth to power. We stand with the brave women and men who use Twitter to share their stories, and will work hard every day to improve our processes to protect those voices. 3/3
— Twitter Safety (@TwitterSafety) Oct. 12, 2017Ms. McGowan, who reached a $100,000 settlement with Mr. Weinstein after an incident in a hotel room at the Sundance Film Festival in 1997, has been vocal in her support of other women who have come forwardwith allegations that the producer sexually assaulted them.
On Tuesday, in response to the actor Ben Affleck condemning accusations against Mr. Weinstein, Ms. McGowan called Mr. Affleck a liar and claimed he had known of the producer’s actions. She also called out other Hollywood players for their silence on the matter, tweeting “You all knew.”
Twitter has struggled in the past to find a balance in moderating content. It has tried to maintain free speech on its platform, but those efforts have sometimes allowed pseudonymous trolls to send abuse to other users.
The platform is also under pressure over fake accounts as lawmakers investigate Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election in the United States. Senator Mark Warner, vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said the company’s briefing for congressional investigators “showed an enormous lack of understanding from the Twitter team of how serious this issue is.”
Twitter’s problems with unsavory content have also put off potential buyers. Disney considered a bid for the platform, but passed; Twitter’s growing reputation as an arena where hate speech can flourish might have posed a problem for the larger brand.
Black out on Friday the 13th.
The lack of any transparency in terms of business ethics and qork quality standards at Amazon is virtually non exsistant. The Expose the Times wrote called Amazon "A Place were High Achievers go to feel bad about themselves" a spin on "where Low Recievers of Pay go to feel broke" becoming reality as Middle Cast Silence as the Fears of Banning Amazon comes to light.
#grabmywallet and now #womenBoycottTwitter are proof that Big Business Bulls can't escape the most powerful weapon in the every day citizens arsenal - Networks.
Rose McGowan implores Jeff Bezos to 'stop funding rapists.' Meanwhile, Amazon suspends studio head amid harassment claim
By MEG JAMES and GUS GARCIA-ROBERTS
OCT 12, 2017 | 05:15 PM
Hours after her Twitter account was reinstated after a suspension, actress Rose McGowan called on Amazon founder Jeff Bezos to "stop funding rapists, alleged pedos and sexual harassers." (Richard Shotwell / Associated Press)The scandal enveloping Hollywood grew wider Thursday when actress Rose McGowan accused movie producer Harvey Weinstein of raping her, and then pleaded with one of America’s most powerful business titans — Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos — to end his company’s alleged involvement in a culture of exploitation and abuse.
"@jeffbezos I am calling on you to stop funding rapists, alleged pedo[philes] and sexual harassers," McGowan said in a Twitter message directed to the Amazon billionaire.
"I love @amazon but there is rot in Hollywood," McGowan wrote, just hours after Twitter lifted a 12-hour suspension that temporarily blocked the actress from posting.
In a separate development on Thursday, Amazon suspended Roy Price, the head of its studios, after "The Man in the High Castle" producer Isa Hackett told the Hollywood Reporter that he had repeatedly propositioned her and made lewd comments.
“Roy Price is on leave of absence effective immediately,” an Amazon spokesperson said. “We are reviewing our options for the projects we have with The Weinstein Co.”
McGowan is one of a number of Hollywood stars, including Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie and Ashley Judd, who have said they were victimized by Weinstein. Last week, the New York Times reported that McGowan reached a $100,000 settlement with Weinstein in 1997 after an incident at the Sundance Film Festival. As part of the settlement, McGowan was not supposed to discuss the incident but she has become increasingly vocal as more women have announced that they also were victims of the co-founder of Miramax and Weinstein Co.
"We are just seeing the tip of the iceberg," said Caroline Heldman, a college professor who has worked with sexual assault victims. "This is going to touch every major studio in Hollywood."
McGowan, 44, previously has suggested on Twitter that she had been victimized and has used the social media platform to call out men, including Weinstein's brother, Bob Weinstein, and actors Ben Affleck, his brother Casey Affleck, and Matt Damon for enabling the misconduct.
Harvey Weinstein gave Ben Affleck and Damon their big break, acquiring their breakout movie "Good Will Hunting," which won the Oscar in 1998 for best original screenplay.
McGowan is best known for starring in the now-defunct WB network hit "Charmed," but also appeared in Wes Craven's 1996 slasher "Scream" — distributed by Dimension Films, the film label owned by the Weinstein Co.
In 1998 she starred opposite Ben Affleck in the horror film "Phantoms," produced by Dimension and distributed by Miramax. She played dual roles in 2007's "Grindhouse," starring in both of the film's two segments for Quentin Tarantino ("Death Proof") and Robert Rodriguez ("Planet Terror"). The film was also distributed by Dimension.
Last year, using the hashtag #WhyWomenDontReport, she vented on Twitter, saying: "My ex sold our movie to my rapist for distribution." She did not spell out who she meant as her "rapist," but some Hollywood insiders speculated that it was Weinstein.
Weinstein's spokesperson, Sallie Hofmeister, said in a statement: "Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein."
Then, last September at an IFP Film Week event in New York, McGowan announced that she had sold a show she had written to Amazon Studios. Some speculated that the project may have been inspired by McGowan's own childhood spent in the Children of God cult, which she fled with her family at the age of 9 after her father feared she might be subjected to child sexual abuse by cult members.
But a formal announcement from Amazon never materialized. On Thursday, McGowan shed more light on the project, tweeting: "I called my attorney & said I want to get my script back, but before I could #2 @amazonstudios called to say my show was dead."
Her Twitter barrage included her — now very public claim — that Weinstein had raped her.
"@jeffbezos I told the head of your studio that HW raped me. Over & Over I said it. He said it hadn't been proven. I said I was the proof," she wrote.
"@jeffbezos I forcefully begged studio head to do the right thing. I was ignored. Deal was done. Amazon won a dirty Oscar," she wrote, an apparent reference to Amazon's movie, "Manchester by the Sea," and its star Casey Affleck, who was accused of sexually assaulting a woman. Casey Affleck has denied the allegation.
Heldman, the women's advocate, praised McGowan's courage.
"Once again, Rose has been taking a lead in taking this to the next level — and holding to account other powerful men who have been complicit in covering up sexual violence," Heldman said.
McGowan's new accusations add another dimension to the controversy because it suggests that she took her allegations to other powerful players in Hollywood.
Ann Fromholz, a Pasadena attorney who has handled sexual harassment cases, said she believes McGowan's latest salvo is part of a growing storm that will make it easier for sexual harassment victims in Hollywood and other industries to speak out.
"I expect that because of the publicity this is getting, because of the support the victims are getting, people likely will be more willing to complain when something like this happens in the future, with Weinstein or anybody else," Fromholz said.
In addition to McGowan's challenge to Bezos, Amazon is also facing other allegations.
Hackett, a producer for "The Man in the High Castle," told the Hollywood Reporter that Price repeatedly propositioned her. She reported the incident to Amazon executives, who hired an outside investigator to look into her allegations.
Hackett's legal representative, Christopher Tricarico, on Thursday confirmed that the statements attributed to Hackett in the Hollywood Reporter were accurate.
However, Hackett, he said, did not wish to comment further.
Tricarico said Hackett participated in the internal investigation at Amazon Studios but was never told if it was concluded or how it was resolved. She followed up with Amazon's Human Resources department, but was told the findings were confidential, the attorney said.
"It was basically the company line, that they were doing what they needed to do internally but were not at liberty to give any details," Tricarico said.
Amazon said in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter that they "looked closely at this specific concern and addressed it directly with those involved."