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#WomenBoycottTwitter Protest Spreads
By: Engadget
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Twitter has been home to many hashtag campaigns, but tonight one is trending that's a little different: #WomenBoycottTwitter. Sparked by its "temporary lock" of Rose McGowan's account yesterday, the movement's purpose is to go dark "In solidarity w @rosemcgowan and all the victims of hate and harassment Twitter fails to support." Participants include fellow celebrities, women who have experienced harassment online and men who support its cause.

The campaign's source is Kelly Ellis, a software engineer and former Google employee who has previously written about the harassment she's experienced and Twitter's failure to address it. Last year Ellis wrote about a weeklong string of harassing tweets she received that Twitter would not act on, and just yesterday noted that while McGowan's account was silenced, rape threats she had received stayed live on the service.

By its nature, it's hard to say exactly how many people have joined the campaign, but it rapidly gained steam yesterday, joined by McGowan herself, Alyssa Milano, Chrissy Tiegen, Jeffrey Wright and others. At the same time, even among people who support its message, there have been reactions asking why now, instead of at times when others, in particular women of color, have experienced harassment on Twitter or bans of varying degrees from the site itself.

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