It’s a rare occasion when there’s a news story about the positive side of the YouTube community. You tend to hear about arguments between creators rather than them coming together, yet here’s a story that does just that.
Successful YouTuber Zoella posted a snapchat of her in her pyjamas, (which was a long sleeved t-shirt and Calvin Klein knickers). The media had a field day.Slut-shaming her for exposing just a little bit of skin. The Daily Mail even dubbed it a ‘racy underwear selfie’, when in reality she was just going to bed.
It wasn’t a scandal, not even a tiny bit ‘saucy’ or ‘inappropriate’. It was just another example of how easily people choose to sexualise women’s bodies. However, in amongst all of the negativity Zoella was experiencing, there was a surprising silver lining. The YouTube community came together to show their support for her when the media were (nonsensically) targeting her.
Even the hashtag #WeStandWithZoe was trending on Wednesday night. Fellow YouTubers like Carrie Hope Fletcher and Hazel Hayes rushed to Zoe’s defence, with Hazel pointing out whether The Sun would have published the slut-shaming article if it had been a male Youtuber being topless or in his underwear. Unlikely!
Whilst some YouTubers spoke out against the double standards, others took their own selfie re-creating what Zoe was wearing. Both Melanie Murphey and Emma Blackery tweeted their own pictures to show how we shouldn’t be sexualising women’s bodies. Even if a woman did want to show off her body and feel all sexy, that’s also her choice. Considering it was International Women’s Day only a few weeks ago, it seems ironic that sexism in the media is what followed.
It also took a turn for the funny when Zoella’s YouTuber boyfriend Alfie Deyes (PointlessBlog) also tweeted his own re-creation of the picture, including him wearing Zoe’s underwear. I think he rocked it.
With all these creators tweeting pictures, it was nice to see YouTubers rally round one of their own. It proves that Team Internet can actually be a pretty great place and is a surprisingly supportive community.
Also, a side note to the media: as Zoella rightly points out, isn’t there also more important things going on in the world? I think that’s 1-0 to Team Internet vs The Media.