#MeToo campaigners become Time Person of the Year

Published: December 06, 2017 21:11:53 | Updated: December 08, 2017 11:00:32

Time magazine has named those drumming up campaign with the #MeToo social media hashtag as the most influential “person” in 2017.

The social movement aimed at raising awareness about sexual harassment and assault round the year.

Time magazine has named the social movement aimed at raising awareness about sexual harassment and assault, epitomised by the #MeToo social media hashtag, as the most influential “person” in 2017.

The publication made the announcement on Wednesday amid a wave of public allegations of sexual misconduct that have targeted some of the most prominent men in US politics, media and entertainment, leading to multiple firings and investigations.

Time Editor-in-Chief Edward Felsenthal said this is the fastest moving social change we have seen in decades.

"It began with individual acts of courage by hundreds of women - and some men, too - who came forward to tell their own stories, he said, referring to them as “the silence breakers.”

As more people made their accusations public, other individuals also shared their own stories of assault and harassment, often with posts on social media platforms using the hashtag #MeToo.

“I could never had envisioned something that would change the world. I was trying to change my community,” Tarana Burke, who created the hashtag, said. “This is just the start. It’s not just a moment, it’s a movement. Now the work really begins.”

US President Donald Trump, who was Time’s person of the year in 2016, was the first runner-up this year, followed by Chinese President Xi Jinping, Felsenthal said.

Other finalists included US Department of Justice Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who is leading the investigation of alleged Russian meddling in the election that Trump won; North Korean President Kim Jong Un; “Wonder Woman” director Patty Jenkins; and football player-turned-activist Colin Kaepernick.

According to Reuters, Time’s annual distinction recognizes the person, group, thing or idea that it has determined had the greatest influence on events for the year.

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