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The truth about the #feministsareugly hashtag.

Still angry, still not sure why.

Social media users have erupted in outrage over the #feministsareugly hashtag, which began trending for a second time on Twitter last night.

Taken at face value, the tag could easily have been created by some fedora-wearing men’s rights activist trolling the women of the internet, but the thing is, it wasn’t.

In fact, the hashtag began in August last year and was started as satire by two feminists of colour Lily Bourian and @cheuya, as a way for women of colour to celebrate their appearance online.

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But as so often happens in the online world, these things tend to take on a mind of their own and the hashtag was soon bouncing around the social media echo chamber and causing outrage everywhere it went.

That outrage soon manifested in the form of sassy selfies as users began posting pictures of their best “I’ll show you an ugly feminist” faces.

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Now, putting aside the fact that a feminist’s appearance has no bearing on the strength of their political convictions, most of the faces that appeared to challenge notions of “ugly” feminism happened to be white.

Many of them were famous people.

All of them missed the point.

None of the users posting photos understood the origin or the message of the movement they had joined, but that didn’t stop them giving their best outraged pouts. Bless ’em.

Unfortunately, Twitter’s new trend mapping tool did nothing to aid these well meaning narcissists. Attempting to sum up the trend, the site’s algorithm drew on an old Inquistr headline, which was, unfortunately, “Ugly Feminists Freak Out Over #FeministsAreUgly Hashtag.”

What a beautiful mess.

There is much to unpick here and the discussion Bolourian was raising is an important one — but Twitter’s response is, to an extent, an example of case in point.

For now here are some of the posts. Courtesy, the idiots of Twitter.

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