The social media multiplier effect: A make-or-break of the SGBV chain

The social media multiplier effect: A make-or-break of the SGBV chain

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BY NELSON ONYIMBI

Social media is awash with radical promoters of gender-based violence, and they often lead a following whose biggest mistake is lacking correct information.

In an era where parenting supersedes physical presence, we need to ask ourselves on behalf of our children, peers, and siblings: Who raises the young people online?

The long-term effect of misleading content especially in low-income communities is a generation of boys and men who disregard every sexual and reproductive health right and perpetrate rape and sexual violence.

A quick search online for radical personalities will give you results such as, among others, American-British social media personality Andrew Tate, who, notwithstanding his huge following, continues to front words and actions that culminate into sexual gender-based violence.

Despite being detained for sex trafficking and rape charges, Tate’s misogynist remarks seem to inspire some boys and young men who have picked his ideologies both in theory and practice. This leaves questions on how much work is needed to counter the misogyny and replace them with useful, correct, and verified information.

Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) is a violation of human rights, and it needs to be nipped in the bud. With Kenya among the top African countries with reliable internet and a hugely youthful online community, it goes without saying that interventions need to be put in place and present ones, strengthened by organizations in the sexual reproductive health space by developing educative entertainment (edutainment).

Young people should take advantage of reliable online spaces and informational materials that educate them on what actions to take in case of incidences such as rape, and these spaces need to be highlighted more (feel free to name some in the comments).

As much as social media has a multiplier effect, we need to also educate our circles on what is right and wrong. However, everyone needs to take responsibility for their own actions, as SGBV is always only a decision away.