Congratulations! You are more powerful than Rupert Murdoch. Jeff Bezos may be the billionaire owner of Amazon but he's got nothing on you. Not, that is, according to the Guardian. In it's annual power survey of the British media landscape the Guardian has awarded "you" - the people - top billing, the most powerful force in British media today.
It is clear that all these movements have had a huge impact in raising awareness of these women's groups' agendas, regularly hitting the front pages and attracting high level support. As someone who works with companies to create communications strategies to support their business objectives, I wondered what lessons could be learnt to create more engaging campaigns.
I found exposing myself to physical threats fundamentally incompatible with pregnancy, the first of which ended in miscarriage after being pinned up against a wall by a man who uttered the words "body bag" (amongst others) in my ear. My crime? Co-organising a series of demonstrations exposing the genocide in Darfur.
Over the last week, 'Twitter trolls' have targeted high profile women with repeated online threats of rape, murder and bomb attacks... It's terrible behaviour, of course. Just because it's a feature of internet culture doesn't mean it's ok. But anyone remotely surprised that the internet is full of trolls and misogynists hasn't really been paying much attention for the last 20 years or so.
While good grooming is not necessarily an indication of the immediate sexualisation of particular women, it does seem to be essential to a lot of people before we will listen to what they have to say. Women themselves are contributing to this, with hundreds a day taking to criticising others for their choice of outfit, when in actual fact they simply disagree with a point being made.
If you get the online equivalent of a black eye, just ignore it. No one will take you seriously. Another black eye? It was probably your fault. You were asking for it. Serious, sustained injuries? Well, perhaps we could intervene now, but it's such a hassle. It would be far easier for everyone if you just stopped talking about it. If you just disappeared.
Caroline Criado-Perez began receiving a barrage of online abuse after the Bank of England announced Jane Austen would feature on the next £10 note. These bizarre and extremely aggressive reactions to her have so far been explained as uncovering a previously suppressed widespread hatred of women. We think the psychology of her predicament is more complex, hinging upon what success represents to the envious and, particularly, those with low self-esteem.
Those of us who use the social construct of free speech in order to critique and challenge do so without behaving like a bunch of abusive nincompoops. That is the real challenge in a civilised society: using the theory of free speech whilst recognising that we will always need to limit it because of the arrogance and ignorance of a few.