The Dope Show

Last Tuesday, Mark Zuckerberg was living his more painful experience. He was totally on the grill. The energy in the room was electric. The reluctant CEO is made to answer some very important questions. Except it failed. It was designed to fail. It was a show designed to get Zuckerberg off the hook. It was a show that gave the pretense of a hearing without a real hearing. It was designed to deflect and confuse. Each senator was given less than five minutes for questions. That meant that there was no room for follow-ups, no chance for big discoveries and many frustratingly half-developed ideas. The worst moments, for all of us, were when senators asked if Zuckerberg would support legislation that would regulate Facebook. By asking him if he would support legislation, the senators elevated him to a kind of co-thinker whose view on Facebook regulation carried special weight. Somehow, it was reminding the discussions about tobacco in the 50s. And this hearing was another content to be featured on the platform to get the people hooked…without answering our questions or worries. It was a big show. A dope show. And everybody enjoyed it…look at the memes and the jokes and you’ll see the fail of this event that made us confirm who we decided to be, some kind of lab rats again…or maybe pigeons.

Zucky Dope

Skinner’s pigeons are those birds that the Harvard psychologist submitted in the 1950s to a devilish exercise. Skinner led them to receive food if they poked at a glass, but varying carefully the interval to observe their behavior, some pigeons pecking the box 2.5 times per second, 16 hours in a row. The experience is explained by Ofir Turel, professor of information systems at California State University, Fullerton, and researcher at the Brain and Creativity Institute of the Department of Psychology at the University of California. He links it to our online compulsive behavior, which he has been studying for ten years. The American describes himself as one of the “founders of what might be called the neuroscience of social networks.” In 2014, he observes the brains of excessive Facebook users and finds that the social network activates the same areas as cocaine. At a time when awareness of the effects of our hyper connection is growing in Silicon Valley, where Sean Parker, the first president of Facebook regrets to have designed a system based on “dopamine shots”, we contacted him to discuss the relevance of the term addiction, the reward circuit and prefrontal cortex, conflict of interest between Facebook and researchers, or these famous pigeons.

The media only mentioned the similarities we found with cocaine, while the differences were equally important. The brain has at least two systems involved in addictions. One, which is involved in the activation of the amygdala and the ventral striatum, is called the impulsive system (and you can see it as the accelerator of a car: every time you see a piece of cake, your brain tells you that taking one end will release dopamine, so you want to eat this piece of cake.Your brain once understood that the cake had released dopamine so he learned and wants to recreate this association ). In case of addiction, this system becomes very sensitive. If we go back to the analogy of the accelerator, it means that your car can accelerate without you controlling it. The other system is the inhibition system, at the level of the prefrontal cortex: the one that makes you give up the cake is the brake pedal. In severe addictions, such as cocaine, systems progress in the opposite direction, the accelerator is very sensitive, the brake does not work. In the case of FB, there are few differences with cocaine: we found that the impulsive system was affected, that it was particularly sensitive in people who have the criteria of a kind of addiction to social networks, but that the brake system was intact, while it is damaged in cocaine addicts. Which is good news because when it is damaged, it is very difficult to repair. Toxic substances kill the neurons present in this brake system. On the other hand, a very sensitive impulsive system is being repaired with drugs, with therapy and many means. As for the cigarette: we can repair the behavior if the motivation is strong enough. There are also “variable rewards”, which really come to mess with the release of dopamine in the brain. It’s not much different from all of us when we check our smart phones 150 times a day. We do not know how many people have liked our post, whether we have likes, or what our friends have posted: all these things generate rewards in the brain in the form of dopamine release. And because the rewards are variable, we automatically repeat our behavior again, and again.

So, now, we understand that the issue might be stronger than what it seems. There is so much we don’t know about Facebook. We might not fully understand we have a corporate monopoly that can manipulate brains and behaviors. We don’t know how their algorithm treats news organizations or content producers, how Facebook uses its own information about Facebook users or how tracking across platforms works. Now that the initial show trial is done, we need the real deal. The real deal would be to dissect the whole system with months of debate, involving experts, psychologists and scientists, to finally understand how this whole thing is shaping our lives.

 

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Your Song

We’ve all created our own personal histories that we share with the world — and we can shape them to live with more meaning and purpose.

Finger Print Stories

We are all storytellers — all engaged, as the anthropologist Mary Catherine Bateson puts it, in an “act of creation” of the “composition of our lives.” Yet unlike most stories we’ve heard, our lives don’t follow a predefined linear and simple path. Our identities and experiences are constantly shifting, and storytelling is how we make sense of it. By taking the separate pieces of our lives and placing them together into a narrative, we create a unified whole that allows us to understand our lives as coherent — and coherence, psychologists say, is a key source of meaning. Northwestern University psychologist Dan McAdams is an expert on a concept he calls “narrative identity.” McAdams describes narrative identity as an internalized story you create about yourself — your own personal myth. Like myths, our narrative identity contains heroes and villains that help us or hold us back, major events that determine the plot, challenges overcome and suffering we have endured. When we want people to understand us, we share our story or parts of it with them; when we want to know who another person is, we ask them to share part of their story. An individual’s life story is not an exhaustive history of everything that has happened. We make what McAdams calls “narrative choices.” Our stories tend to focus on the most extraordinary events, good and bad, because those are the experiences we need to make sense of and that shape us. But our interpretations may differ. It all depends on the angle or the experience you take out of it. It can be any kind of consequences depending on the event and the way you assimilate it.

McAdams has been studying narrative identity for over 30 years. In his interviews, he asks research subjects to divide their lives into chapters and to recount key scenes, such as a high point, a low point, a turning point or an early memory. He encourages participants to think about their personal beliefs and values. Finally, he asks them to reflect on their story’s central theme. He has discovered interesting patterns in how people living meaningful lives understand and interpret their experiences. People who are driven to contribute to society and to future generations, he found, are more likely to tell redemptive stories about their lives, or stories that transition from bad to good. There was the man who grew up in dire poverty but told McAdams that his hard circumstances brought him and his family closer together. These people rate their lives as more meaningful than those who tell stories that have either no or fewer redemptive sequences. The opposite of a redemptive story is called a “contamination story,” in which people interpret their lives as going from good to bad. People who tell contamination stories, it was found found, are less “generative,” or less driven to contribute to society and younger generations. They also tend to be more anxious and depressed, and to feel that their lives are less coherent compared to those who tell redemptive stories. Redemption and contamination stories are just two kinds of tales we spin. McAdams has found that beyond stories of redemption, people who believe their lives are meaningful tend to tell stories defined by growth, communion and agency. These stories allow individuals to craft a positive identity: they are in control of their lives, they are loved, they are progressing through life and whatever obstacles they have encountered have been redeemed by good outcomes.

One of the great contributions of psychology and psychotherapy research is the idea that we can edit, revise and interpret the stories we tell about our lives even as we are constrained by the facts. A psychotherapist’s job is to work with patients to rewrite their stories in a more positive way. Through editing and reinterpreting his story with his therapist, the patient may come to realize that he is in control of his life and that some meaning can be gleaned from his hardships. Many studies suggest that the ability of a story to create meaning does not end with the crafting of the tale. The stories the benefactors from different studies told about themselves ultimately led to meaningful behaviors — giving their time in the service of a larger cause. Even though the fundraisers knew they were only telling their stories as part of a study, they ultimately “lived by” those stories, as McAdams would put it. By subtly reframing their narrative, they adopted a positive identity that led them to live more purposefully. So happiness is great (even if we don’t know what it means) but the sense of purpose prevails.

(Extract and Content from Emily Esfahani Smith articles and speeches)

Game Story

Over the past 40 years, the gaming industry has evolved to become one of the largest storytelling mediums in terms of revenue and consumption. Not only has the technology emerged to a point where users can literally embody the characters in the story worlds but also the integrity of the discipline as an artistic medium is something that nobody can deny. Games have done more work to pioneer best practices in interactive and participatory storytelling than any entertainment support in the last 25 years. Still, questions continue to circulate about its ability to match other mediums in terms of complex and cathartic stories, nuanced and fully evolved characters, and empathy.

Is this a valuable medium for robust narrative storytelling? What is the best way to catalyze empathy through gaming? Is first-person or third-person perspective more effective? Can the protagonist be the gamer? Do you focus on building the story world, the rules, the stakes and the architecture and let the stories emerge organically from the community? What rules will you change to meet their needs? When should you not allow change? Should the main character be neutral or be complicit in the story? How do you make the gamer believe there are real high stakes for the characters? In this respect, there are no rules, no unique way of doing things, but many different options. Well, it’s true that narrative in gaming became quite impressive…but still, do we believe it reached the level of movies or literature? Maybe some technical issues need to be addressed on the way up.

Halo5

If we come to the basics of storytelling, a complete narrative goes from a well-defined beginning, to a peak climax at the middle and a breath-taking or resolving ending. Of course, preferably through the tension or a bit closer to the end, the main character must make a decision – one that will change the course of events. Things don’t just happen around the player regardless of what they do. Characters don’t just transform into evil demons – the main character (or in a game sense, the player) must make a decision that causes it to happen. A great story needs to be dynamic, with a logical through-line of events. As many screen writers and professional storytellers pointed out, each scene needs to be connected by an action – a “therefore” or a “but.” A story that rests on “and then” is one that feels as if it’s happening without the engine of character agency. We just observe a bunch of actions linked passively to each other. However, the progression of the story needs to make sense. If, say, a bunch of zombies show up randomly in the middle of your story, that’s not an exciting twist. We can call that a story cosmetics. Then a great story must have believable, interesting, and be constructed around well-crafted characters. This can be particularly tricky with gaming since the main character is often the player – a cipher representing the person at the keyboard/controller. But the characters we encounter have to feel real and interesting. Of course, we stick to the framework and we know that our critical thinking exercise is not considering any of the game play structure and evolution, but we want to progress by highlighting the difficulties and challenges

Gaming doesn’t allow for easy narrative. The audience is definitely not passive. That makes stories relatively easy to tell since you don’t have to compensate for the viewer/listener/reader changing things. That kind of control not a luxury most games can afford. When the player is locked into a narrative, that is often when they feel most disengaged from the story, rather than as a part of it – the exact opposite of all other kinds of entertainment media. Unfortunately, this means the developer must create a ton of content just to compensate for what a player may do. Many games struggle to hold the infrastructure of a story together when there are so many moving parts.  A lot of new-generation games feature a kind of “emergent storytelling.” There is no narrative and so we players sort of drape a story over the events. The story is what we bring to it and so it often feels more engaging because the player can own the full sequence of events. But it may result in a certain kind of chaos going to any kind of direction, without a story line that would keep together the full experience. This is another dilemma to deal with.

Defining the maturity of the genre, supporting the evolution of gaming. It’s a complicated journey and set up, this whole interactive experience to deliver to more demanding audience and developers are still trying to avoid pit falls all along the way without damaging the content of the game. Humans are good at writing novels because we’ve had centuries of practice. Movies took around eighty years before they evolved past being pre-recorded stage productions. We’ve had television for over sixty years and we’re only just now figuring out the optimal ways of telling an episodic story. And no medium has the additional challenge of having to compensate for viewer choice. Imagine Game of Thrones having to tell such a complicated, engaging narrative with every viewer choosing each character’s decision. It would be impossible. But that’s what we’re asking of games. The truth is, we just may need more time to figure it out.

Specialized writers are slightly in need. There are some writers in gaming. They’re most culled from the ranks of programmers, developers and artists. They have extremely talented people who, unfortunately, aren’t writers. In the early days of gaming, much like the early days of film, actually, teams were so small that everyone did everything. Everything changed…for good. Even indie games will get someone specifically to do the art. Will outsource the soundtrack. But who is really taking care of the story structure. The gaming industry is solid proof that not everyone can write. And in the end, that’s the problem. The challenges exist, certainly, but we don’t even have the right people taking them on. Novels have authors, editors, and experts in the written word. Every movie you see started with a script that was written by someone who does that for a living. TV shows have whole teams of men and women working on the plot, the dialogue, and the characters. The show runners are becoming the new TV gods. They spend months, even years, developing a story for their chosen medium. Games, for the most part, have one person, if anyone at all, and most of them are coders first, writers second. Let’s be honest, some games do have writers. But it’s not the norm, and even the most writer-heavy games have only one or two names associated with the story. Obviously, hiring a writer (ideally lots of writers) is an additional expense and many games are barely on budget to begin with. Story matters and in order for it to be done well we need professional storytellers – aka, writers. We have hundreds of years of evidence that quality counts and games are no different.

Just for the pleasure, few games that are inventing some new storytelling patterns in video gaming

 

 

Marketing Time Machine

In a fast-paced world, immersing yourself in nostalgia is like wrapping yourself in a comfortable blanket of “the good old days”, when things were feeling much simpler. All research on the topic explains that our lives react positively to a sense of continuity and meaning, as we get older. That dusty gaming console on your bookshelf and your growing collection of vinyl records remind you of your more innocent years. Now, companies are beginning to recognize the value of nostalgia in advertising, as a way of convincing customers to reach this feeling by paying for your brand experience. Nostalgia inspires consumers to spend their money because it promises an immediate return in the form of happy memories and comfort. This is why nostalgia marketing campaigns have grown increasingly popular in recent years, as brands begin to discover the value of connecting with the audience on a deep emotional level. And your brand doesn’t have to be an old and well-known business to enjoy the power of a nostalgia marketing strategy. Any company has the capacity to connect with old ideas and beloved concepts. With the support of an adequate brand understanding and strategy, even the most modern company can join the retro revolution, and design a heart-warming nostalgia marketing strategy.

Whether it’s Pokemon crazy real-life game or a powerful cover of a song of our childhood, the phenomenon over the last couple of years have highlighted the value of nostalgia marketing. No matter your generation or your audience group, nostalgia has something special to offer to all of. As we age, we all develop fond memories of our younger days, from the food we ate to the games we played, and obviously the music we listened to. After all, our experiences of the past are what help to shape our personalities. When it comes to finding a nostalgia marketing definition, the easiest way to explain the concept is to look at it as a way of aligning advertising campaigns, with things that provoke emotional responses from the past. We already know that emotional leverage convince customers to act, and advocate on the behalf of their favorite brands. However, tapping into strong memories can be one of the most powerful ways to excite emotion. It is proven that nostalgia counteracts boredom, loneliness, and anxiety. It also makes people more tolerant of outsiders and more generous to strangers. Some research even suggests that nostalgia can be triggered as a way of coping with difficult life transitions and tough moments. In other words, nostalgia is before all a psychological phenomenon. In today’s highly competitive marketplace, nostalgia in advertising can allow both new, and old brands to connect with their audience on a powerful emotional level. Already, some of the most significant companies in the world have begun to show us just how useful this tactic can be. From iconic fashion brands or just retail chains and restaurants, there seems to be room for nostalgia in every category. Brands like Nike, Pepsi or Coke are already using old-fashioned designs and logos from the past, announcing them as “retro” products.

When looking for best practices in terms of nostalgia strategy, a lot of companies expect to get some great examples only in brands enjoying already pre-established connotations. However, the truth is that you don’t have to enjoy any background in your marketplace to find the right way. One excellent example of how new concepts can tap into old ideas is the ‘Stranger Things’ retro sci-fi show. Released as a Netflix original, the show features references, music, and images that play homage to some of our favorite thrillers and kid movies from the 80s, including E.T., the X-Files, the Goonies and more. However, it’s a completely original piece of content that combines nostalgia with new ideas, dramas and characters. By looking at ideas like ‘Stranger Things’, and examples from other brands that have used nostalgia marketing strategy so effectively in the past, even the most forward-thinking start-up can discover the power of looking back.

Stranger Things

Nostalgia marketing is a simple concept. It’s all about using old, familiar concepts known for developing happy connotations and fond memories, to build trust for new ideas and novel associations. What better way to seduce your customers when you associate your company with something they already love? While this tactic has been around for several years now, it’s begun to see a particularly strong resurgence recently, as Millennials search for a sanctuary from the stress and confusion of the digital age. Although it’s true that any company can use nostalgia in advertising to grow their brand, it’s also worth noting that it can be difficult to get the “feel” right, without some careful planning and attention to detail. If your nostalgic strategies don’t align your brand values and personality, then you’ll simply convince your audience that you’re willing to adopt any strategy in an attempt to get them to buy from you – regardless of whether it fits or not.

You have to be careful to loopholes not for your brand to look opportunist or phony. Build your strategy on a real purpose, in total integration with your brand to make sure your inspiration is led by the best of attention and care for your consumers, the total respect of the associations that you want to unveil. Before you can engage in a powerful nostalgia marketing strategy, you need to make sure that you’re drawing images and ideas from the right generation, to appease the right demographic. Think about the age-range of your target audience, and make sure that you research their preferences in detail when you’re building your plan. And of course, if you can, you just use in the history of your brand. A brand that’s been around for even a couple of years can build on their nostalgia strategies by reminding their customers of the good experiences that they had with them on previous occasions. Then, all the details are important and, even more, it has to take some memories and project them in the present.

Nostalgia marketing is a difficult exercise when you can’t fake it, you will be betraying your audience twice for that. Don’t make fool of pop culture heritage; you’ll be immediately punished. But if you succeed to find the right recipe, you will be loved beyond reason for reviving the best of our existence.

(Inspired by the article from Fabrik Brands ‘Passion for the past: Nostalgia marketing and the retro revolution’)

 

Social Kills Fashion – Maybe Not

There is no doubt Instagram became an amazing platform for storytelling. And as fashion relies heavily on powerful visuals and graphics…well, you feel the match. Eva Chen, Instagram’s Head of Fashion Partnership, explains, “It democratizes fashion. There’s a greater connection to the customer now. Instagram enables brands to build a voice and speak more specifically to their audiences. Designers are not just thinking about the people at the shows.”

The four pillars for Instagram development are the following:

Brand Identity

With visual storytelling, fashion brands and retailers are now using Instagram as their primary tool to reveal brand personality. One look at a brand’s Instagram page should easily provide consumers a glimpse into the brand’s culture, lifestyle and products. Apart of revealing the attributes and the world of the brand, its environment and associations, it can give also the customers an insight on what the company and its employees are like, showcasing interesting cultural insights related to the brand positioning. Instagram offers the perfect snapshot of a fashion label’s identity, and nowadays, it has become imperative for successful brands to communicate a unique footprint to their consumers.

Community Engagement

One of the most innovative forms of marketing is to let the customer do the selling. Through Instagram, brands can generate high community engagement. The hashtag still proves to be a reliable and important way to increase reach and shows some relevant trends for the brands. So we can observe high community engagement through marketing activations where it’s been asked to the people to generate some content by themselves.

Behind the Scenes of Fashion

Social media has blurred the lines between the once “exclusive” fashion community and the general public. Gone are the days of waiting until the September issue of Vogue or Bazaar to see the latest collection looks. Nowadays, fashion insiders capture the runway looks on their smart phones and share them from the show. Some fashion designers are going beyond that and offering their followers a “behind the scenes” peek.

Monetizing Social

Instagram has become increasingly shoppable. There are only few steps from the platform. There’s no doubt that Instagram has revolutionized and redefined the fashion industry. It has made the once “exclusive” fashion industry accessible to the public. Furthermore, brands can now craft an identity, create community engagement, and generate return far beyond the rack.

LilMiquela

If you still with me until now, we can agree altogether that what I just stated here is common sense and brands are using Instagram’s assets in the proper way. But let’s have a bit of critical thinking here. Obviously instagramers are useful to the fashion industry because they offer another revenue stream for brands and designers, but could they potentially be bad for the industry? Fashion, more than most industries, relies on aspiration and exclusivity. The high fashion brands have pedigree and history. They have an institutional quality to them that’s been built over the course of decades. Instagram is a product of the new millennium. The accessible, grassroots nature of social media makes it less prestigious by default, which risks cheapening the brands that rely on it.

Before the rise of the Internet and the proliferation of social media, the bar of entry into the fashion world was much higher. Anna Wintour isn’t simply a woman with great vista and taste; she’s a qualified journalist. Alexander McQueen was not just someone with superhuman talent for designing clothes; he was the graduate of the world’s most elite school for fashion design. Influencers, on the other hand, are simply the winners of a popularity contest. They haven’t endured the same level of scrutiny from people who know how and what to scrutinize. And now, the first rows of the defiles are just populated with all those ‘new generation’ contestants. It was always striking me that the most popular fashion week was the one from NYC, the one with the less interesting and refined collections but obviously with the biggest population density of worldwide influencers and instagramers.

big4fashionweek

 

The keys to the door are now shared between the “establishment” and consumers, but making fashion more accessible corrodes some of its prestige. This idea might be considered a bit old fashioned, not in the wave of modernity. But it’s interesting to have a look to both sides of the coin. Meritocracy should always prevail. The rise of the influencers can compromise the creative vision of the industry, as they influence the future of creativity with pretty much novice eyes. Before the digital era, there was very little discourse between the industry and outside forces: fashion professionals picked the supermodels, dressed them, curated the image and beamed it out into the world. The only way that consumers could have a say was through their purchasing decisions. Their choice of influencer puts the tastes and desires of the consumer into a very public forum that the industry can observe. The end product is created with the consumer in mind. So, in that sense influencers haven’t really changed anything, they’ve only made the voice of the public clearer, louder and more intrusive.

I’m nobody to judge to that extent.

Cyber Pop Security

Every year, many sources file a lot of information about our passwords because of the leaks and many security issues; they compile a list of the most popular passwords based on millions of stolen logins made public in the last year. In 2017, we can enjoy again some nice data to think from. The least we can say is that human beings are mostly naïve or otherwise very influenced.

Mr Robot

If we start by the naïve or possibly the most simplistic side of our brain, we already know the top names that emerge (based on more than 5-10 million leaked passwords in 2017) are “123456” and “password.” – they keep the top ranking since quite a few years already. In the list of the ‘already known’ and ‘still really popular’, we can have passwords as stupid and easy to hack as ‘12345678’, ‘qwerty’, ‘iloveyou’, ‘admin’ (more for IT connoisseurs), ‘welcome’, ’login’ or the really complicated ‘hello’. It seems that the people are more afraid to forget their passwords than to gently give a bunk of their personal files to strangers. Nothing really changed since this TEDx talk from Lorie Faith Cranor.

 

But what is really interesting is to deep dive into the second aspect of our personalities, the influenced one. We talk here about the relationship we develop with our environment and mostly the pop culture we are exposed to on a daily basis. The two new passwords that make the top 20 this year is ‘starwars’ and ‘dragon’ (obviously inspired by the blockbuster and TV series Game of Thrones plot). Pop culture is really leading us to make some choice that we believe are very personal but it seems that the hackers are much clever than you, they analyse (with the help of powerful and dedicated softwares)  geographies, backgrounds, education and other personal things. They can find out very easily what kind of films you’re watching, the games you’re playing and obviously the football team you’re supporting. Some words, expressions or references are still quite amazing to notice this year. I want to give you a sample here – those beyond the obvious but still very popular in the ranking lists –  ‘Sh1a-labeouf’ (seems that the sometimes-troubled actor is still very popular, maybe because his name and reputation make you feel safe), anything with Jennifer in it (we assume Jennifer Lawrence popularity is constantly high), ‘Mynoob’ (with a clear link to World of Warcraft and its fans), Ut4luke (abbreviation of ‘Use the Force, Luke’), Superman and 007Bond (heroes reuniting different generations) or even SpongeBob, HelloKitty and JustinBieber. “Unfortunately, while the newest episode may be a fantastic addition to the Star Wars franchise, ‘starwars’ is a dangerous password to use,” Morgan Slain, CEO of SplashData, said in a press release. “Hackers are using common terms from pop culture and sports to break into accounts online because they know many people are using those easy-to-remember words.”

According to the data from this year and years past, we are still a bunch of idiots – our astonishingly weak passwords at the mercy of even the most amateur hackers. Of course,   those conclusions might be slightly biased as the sample is built around 10 millions breached accounts (which obviously show the weakest options out of billions of passwords in the world) but it says a lot about our incapacity to learn, to memorize or to dissociate our security with things we are really attached with.

 

#metoo – Movement Sustainability

We celebrate the women today; 8th of March, happy Women’s Day. But it’s also important to acknowledge all the efforts still to be done for total gender equality across the globe. We also witness the outcomes of almost 6 months of Harvey Weinstein sex harassment scandals in the Hollywood microcosm. It was the sparkle that unveiled the truth (if truth had to be revealed when it comes to the cinema industry) but we have the right to understand how can we sustain this movement initiated few months ago. It is definitely a day to start to reflect on what has to be done to make tangible changes from the #metoo movement to its continuation #timesup…and beyond.

#MeToo, for all the progress it has made in exposing sexual harassment and abuse—and in exposing the contours of systemic sexism— has been, from the outset, largely limited to a certain population that is far to represent the full world population: a movement started, by the famous and the visible, a movement unsure of how to convert itself from stories into action. How do you broaden it? How do you move the #MeToo movement beyond the countries, the cultures, the socio-demographic layers, the professional environments… as a proper movement that should last, how to make it more inclusive, more systematized, more politically effective? How can #MeToo, essentially, move from the realm of the “me” to the realm of, more fully and more meaningfully? Move from identifying the problem to actively solving it.

The initiatives that started to pop up through different sources include efforts to create legislation that will penalize companies that tolerate harassment, and that will discourage the use of the nondisclosure agreements that have helped to silence victims of abuse. It has embraced a mission to reach gender parity (still focusing on Hollywood studios and talent agencies when it comes to TimesUp). And, perhaps most significantly, they will administer a National Women’s Law Center’s Legal Network for Gender Equity and that will connect victims of sexual harassment with legal representation. To that end, Time’s Up has established a GoFundMe of $15 million – from Hollywood honchos and the public at large—to provide legal support to women and men who have experienced sexual harassment, assault, or abuse in the workplace. “Access to prompt and comprehensive legal and communications help,” the campaign notes, “will mean empowerment for these individuals and long term growth for our culture and communities as a whole. ”

Oprah

We understand the theory about movement (a lot of theories are out there, have a look to Strawberry Frog agency work on the subject). It starts by an ignition (the Weinstein scandal in our case), the expansion (the understand ing and the reflection on its own experience with #metoo, the common belief from all women that time is up, still very abstract in my sense, another slogan to make it broader) and sustainability – this is where we have to think further, to make sure that things matter, that things get real for everybody. Maybe we can think about few points – you can help me to make those points

– We have to shift public focus away from celebrities to real people living in the working world, to the thousands of women who face sexual harassment daily but may not have the means or access to pursue legal cases or media articles. That seems at least part of the goal of “Time’s Up,” but I get a possible issue here. The fund is still organized by people in the limelight and not initiated by real empathic stories for the many. If Rosa Parks or Kathrin Switzer decisions and actions were so strong, it’s because her story was simple, grounded to the reality and extremely bold as she was alone to stand for it. She was not on a red carpet in a black dress with global broadcast – that is the power of simple stories, to bring us together to act.

– We need see men and women step up as bystanders, one of the few ways proven effective at combating workplace harassment and discrimination (and in fact very easy to do!). We will reach our goals of gender equality only if we all fight for the same thing. I still hear some men saying ‘What do you think? In Hollywood, everybody knew. This is not like that in the real life and they live differently than us’. Well, we have to solve the whole thing together because it happens everywhere.

– We need to talk so much about culture and education as much as we talk about individuals, and recognize that while the Weinsteins of the world are extreme, the messages we learn about sex, and power, and courtship, and consent, are deeply engrained and start and will take far more than a workplace sexual harassment training to unleash the voices of the people. And we should not forget about disparities in the culture of the country. I don’t want to point anybody in particular here (and I might be wrong in my conceptions) but women don’t have the same opportunities everywhere for obvious reasons Top of Form

– We need to have a meaningful, some nuanced discussions about due process, understanding of the rights/wrongs and conduct behavior. What can someone accused of sexual misconduct reasonably expect, what is fair, and what range of punishments should be considered beyond the abrupt torching of someone’s career? We don’t want men to be afraid to smile to their colleagues or just to be staying late, working 4 meters from their assistant…that would make no sense. We have to define and think about what can be done and what should not be done – for the sake for everybody’s lives

– We have to encourage women to take over the reins at major institutions, filling in the gaps left by the fallen men who have long shaped our societal narratives. We know from research that organizations with more women are more successful, more collaborative, more profitable, and more inclusive. What effect might those women’s leadership have on media and culture at large? We have to make sure that this movement is getting towards the achievement of the better.

– We have to make sure that all institutions or power eco-system (in any sense) work in symbiosis to change the way we understand the society – from the media to the government, they all have something really important to play here, with intelligence and perspective. We have to focus on the right questions, the right solutions, the righ stimulus, the right…you name it.

So, what would be the next steps for the movement #metoo or #timesup. Maybe like all the other movements that made history, to disappear slowly after achieving what has to be done, never again have people questioning something that seems to be the basic understanding of our bright future altogether.