Why the internet is bad for Amber Heard and is this the end of #MeToo?

Updated 1 hour ago

the jury is go out Johnny Depp has launched a $50 million US defamation lawsuit against his ex-wife Amber Heard.The proceedings stemmed from Hurd’s 2018 publication in Washington postin which she describes herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse”.

However, the article does not mention Depp, I heard Depp divorced In 2016, a restraining order was obtained against him. A backlash against Hurd erupted on the internet over the course of the six-week trial. The actress was mocked as a liar and a gold digger. The online reaction quickly morphed from support for Depp to anger and ridicule for Heard. Why is the Internet bad for Amber Heard? Does this case mean the end of the #MeToo movement?

Dirty

The vitriol directed at Hurd is inexplicable in many ways. Her allegations against Depp were previously considered credible. In 2020, Depp sues The Sun The paper called Depp a “wife beater,” the report said. In that case, the judge was confident that Depp’s description was accurate and that 12 of the 14 violent incidents Depp allegedly committed against Heard did occur.

Justice Nicol said he was satisfied with all the evidence that Hurd was “the victim of multiple ongoing attacks by Mr Depp in Australia”. The judge rejected Depp’s claim that Heard cut off his finger and commented on the level of Depp’s anger, which prompted him to scribble a letter to Heard in his own blood. “I accept her evidence of the nature of the attacks he carried out on her. They must have been horrific,” the judge concluded.

Widespread support for Depp is also baffling, especially given the series of grotesque Short message Sent by Heard after he filed for divorce, which has come to light at the trial. In one such message, Depp expressed hope that Hurd’s “rotten body is rotting in the trunk of the Honda Civic.” In another exchange with actor Paul Bettany, Depp wrote: “Let’s burn Amber!!!” followed by “Let’s drown her before we burn her!!! Then I will Fuck her charred body to make sure she’s dead.”

Heard’s allegations against Depp are one of the worst examples of domestic violence imaginable. These include allegations of physical and verbal abuse as well as sexual assault, including forcible penetration with a wine bottle (Depp has also brought abuse allegations against Heard). After a 16-day trial, a British court believed Hurd’s allegations. So why is the internet working against her and so many people seem to be rallying around Depp?

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The answer may lie in part in how some media outlets and even companies have handled the matter.According to reports Vice News The right-wing Daily Telegraph has spent tens of thousands of dollars on social media ads to support Depp and discredit Heard.The sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live has parody trial, dismissed serious abuse allegations and described the trial as “for fun”.Different kinds Starbucks branch Tip jars have been specified in favor of “Johnny” or “Amber”.

The frenzy was fueled by the conduct of the U.S. trial itself, with judges sanctioning the livestreaming of the case, tweaked by millions every day, and clips and memes shared live on media platforms.

Another factor that could lead to online attacks on Hurd could be the rise of ‘anti-mania’, reports Caitlin Tiffany in the Atlanticthe focus on a (usually female) celebrity is credited with bringing down the (usually male) celebrity, leading to an online smear campaign and the spread of unfounded rumors.

Conspiracy theories flourished about Heard, including that she faked bruises with makeup and took cocaine while testifying in court.

Whatever the reasons for the anti-Hurd material fuelling social media, it will undoubtedly be seen by many who have experienced intimate partner violence. Such violence is widespread internationally.In Ireland, demand for services of Dublin Rape Crisis Centre reached record high in 2019. We also know that gender-based violence is vastly underestimated. Research One reason that suggests this underreporting is the cultural acceptability of this violence.

#MeToo what now?

#MeToo, a phrase coined by advocates Tarana Burkeharnesses the power of social media by inviting women and girls to speak out about their experiences of violence and sexism.

In her Washington Post article, the subject of defamation lawsuits, Hurd tells a story familiar to many women who have experienced abuse: fear of reporting sexual harassment and assault, realization that many institutions are there to protect male predators, and hope emerging From the conversation started by the #MeToo movement. The whole internet culture now seems to have been taking off in the backlash of the #MeToo movement, targeting Hurd.

The circus surrounding Depp’s case against Heard, and the memetics of the trial centered on the most serious domestic violence charges, remind us of the dark side of the internet.

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Hurd described in her article very fearful,”Our culture’s anger at outspoken women‘, her treatment was reflected throughout the case. It will undoubtedly further deter victims from coming forward – no joke.

Seána Glennon is an attorney and doctoral student at UCD Sutherland School of Law and chief outreach officer for the UCD Center for Constitutional Studies.

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