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The Hashtag That Became a Movement Marks its First Anniversary

From Nora Jacobs at Hennes Communications:


After this week’s events, if there is a place in America where the issue of sexual misconduct is not top-of-mind, it is a place without access to the internet, television and newspapers.

Although the phrase “Me Too” dates back to 2006, it wasn’t until October 2017, when it was modified with a hashtag to become #MeToo, that the phrase became a movement.  In December last year, the movement had already gained so much momentum, “The Silence Breakers” were named the Person of the Year by TIME magazine.  In the past year, we have seen a staggering number of individuals accused, confronted and convicted for behavior society now regards as unacceptable.  #MeToo has struck the powerful and seemingly unassailable (think Bill Cosby,  Les Moonves and Matt Lauer), but also has encouraged victims to come forward with allegations against all types of individuals in business, the arts, politics, education, religion and almost any other field you can name.

Sadly, helping organizations that are caught in the midst of allegations regarding sexual misconduct has become the fastest growing practice area for Hennes Communications.  This is also the area of work where we most often find ourselves in partnership with a client’s legal counsel.  Not only do cases like this represent high-stakes threats to reputation and stakeholder confidence, but they also pose the very real possibility of legal action.  For these reasons, we are glad to sit at the table with a client’s attorneys and work together to provide a joint strategy defending an organization’s decisions and track record.

For another perspective on this approach to helping clients, take a look at this article from Bloomberg News:  Lawyers, PR Firms Team Up for Employers Facing #MeToo Crises.

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