Fat hate on autocomplete
"Fat people don't have feelings."
"Fat people are gross."
"Skinny people are ugly."
These are just a few of the autocompleted searches blogger Jes Baker, discovered while perusing Google recently, and, it's safe to say, she was not amused.
The negative phrases have moved the writer, who bogs at The Militant Baker, to channel her frustrations into a positive project.
Inspired by the United Nations campaign in October, which highlighted the way sexism manifests itself online, Baker's project, 'Bodies Aren't Ugly. Bullying Is," highlights the proliferation of body-shaming - and it is incredibly powerful.
"I may be used to reading this kinda junk by now," Baker wrote in a blog post introducing the project on December 2, "but that doesn't make it any less alarming when the top searches for fat people include things like: fat people are disgusting, don't have feelings, deserve to be bullied, and should die."
A person's body shape is so benign it only affects those who inhabit it, Baker says. "Yet, it is socially acceptable to hate, loathe, harass, antagonise, persecute and bully a person based on a clothing size."
Following the lead of the UN, Baker juxtaposed photographs of people with Google autocompleted searches criticising their body type. She then shared the images on her Facebook page and invited her followers to create and share their own posters. To date, she has received more than 500 submissions.
"As long as we continue to demonise and degrade one body type, we will never reach true body acceptance as a society," Baker writes. "And until we reach true body acceptance as a society, we will continue to see low self-esteem, depression, eating disorders, sabotaged relationships, employment inequality, sky high suicide rates, and all sorts of other social infirmities. No more please. No more."
This project radiates enough positive energy to make us forget it's a sunny Wednesday and we're stuck inside the office. We are fast developing a girl crush on Jes Baker and her fresh and colourful perspective.
- Share your support and poster at The Militant Baker's Facebook page.
- Daily Life