And it would help all women and girls.
It’s a very moving piece, and an extraordinary gesture from the young billionaire. One of the world’s most high-profile entrepreneurs is making a statement about the true power of wealth, and saying it has nothing to do with conspicuous consumption. Zuckerbeg is in the rare and remarkable position of being able to make an actual difference, and should be celebrated for it.
And yet I can’t help but wonder why a man who is willing to give away his billions in the hope of making life better for his daughter has not made one very simple change which could make a real world improvement to his daughter’s life as she grows up. And the lives of millions of other women.
I’m talking about Facebook finally taking a stance against the sort of online abuse that his daughter (and her friends) are almost certainly going to experience once they reach adolescence, just by virtue of their gender.
Facebook is not the only platform where women experience harassment. Watch prominent women reading mean Tweets about themselves. (Post continues after video).
I’m talking about the type of sexual harassment and misogynistic abuse that literally millions of women and teen girls have already experienced while on Facebook.
Right now, 62 per cent of online abuse in the US happens on Facebook, and sexual harassment of women and girls is the most common form of that abuse.
And we don’t have to look to America to see staggering examples of online misogyny. Last week, Australian writer Clementine Ford published the profile names of some of the many men who had sent her vile abusive messages on Facebook. This week, an Australian man lost his job for abusing Ford after he was reported to his employer.