Cancel Culture Explained
Social media is responsible for several cultural phenomena that have a great effect on many people, one of which being "cancel culture". The cancel culture is especially common in Twitter, where people convey ideas in 140 characters or less, especially on things that bother them. To find out if you are a part of the cancel culture and what is cancel culture in general, read on this article.
What is Cancel Culture?
When disagreeing with people in real life, you will probably get into a lively and sometimes live debate while trying to convince the other person why and how they are wrong. If the same happens on social media one person could be completely canceled out; online cancel culture is an attempt to block people, companies, and other entities who expressed a problematic or controversial opinion.
Those who behave badly on social media will be piled on by those who disagree with them while trying to get as many people as possible to support the cancelation. The phenomena became so widespread in the past few years that both Donald Trump Barack Obama criticized it and the way that people try to cancel each other out for supposed wrongdoings.
The Beginning of Cancel Culture
Surprisingly, cancel culture began with the #MeToo Movement; as it was discovered that many public figures in the US were suspected of sexually harassing people for years, people called out to 'cancel' those figures out of society and take away their power.
There were also people and public figures who were canceled for anti-LGBTQ and racist remarks they made in the past or present. What started as a call-out culture that was intended to put people on the spot for their wrongdoings became a cancel turned into a cancel culture where people ask to completely cancel others, especially public figures.
Cancel Culture – Does it Really Work?
There are many people who support the cancel culture as it is intended to take away the power of those who use it wrongfully or to express harsh opinions and world views.
However, there are those who are calling out to cancel the cancel culture; among them are people who claim that cancel culture is virtually ineffective, as the people who are targeted for cancellation remain active on social media and other platforms, and many of them still have a large following, like Louis C.K. who was accused of several sexual harassment acts.
Others say that people can easily call out for the cancellation of others, potentially harming them or causing them to harm themselves. Most of those who call out to cancel others think that those who are worthy of cancellation are not worthy of a second chance; this can be a slippery slope for the right of speech and also the right to express opinions without being afraid of getting ostracized.
Like other social media phenomena, cancel culture has gotten out of hand, and some people call out to cancel others simply for having different opinions, which begs the question: should cancel culture be canceled?
President Trump even went as far as comparing cancel culture to totalitarianism, and it is difficult to draw the line between free speech and abuse of power over social media. Following the killing of George Floyd and the social uproar that it brought forth, people are asking to cancel controversial symbols and those who support them, like the Confederacy.
It is difficult to predict if and when cancel culture will be over, especially in light of the current social climate in the county. We can only hope that people use their voice in a good and productive way, not demanding the cancellation of others as they themselves would like to continue being heard.