CNN notes that in 2017, the #MeToo hashtag went viral on social media and in the news. This followed accusations of sexual harassment against a famous film producer. Since then, the movement has spread to New Hampshire and the rest of the United States. It empowered many women who suffered in silence to speak out, and not just in America, but overseas.
Men now take issue with the medium many women choose to accuse them. Instead of getting tried in a court room, they increasingly find that the accusations are made publicly to news agencies or via social media. This can have devastating effects on a man’s career following thoughtless comments made while drunk that they may have later sought to make honest reparations for.
While this certainly does not excuse the fact that these incidents happen, and all too frequently, it does bring up the issue of appropriate ways to make an accusation. This may remain true even when the accusations are not only true but when the accuser owns up to them. To get answers, some men now resort to taking women to court for the public accusations, citing defamation of character.
Getting sued for reporting the men they accuse are not the only risks women now face. Forbes notes that male health practitioners fear to give CPR and administer other forms of medical care out of fear of these being classed as unwanted sexual touching. Men in high positions also expressed fear of mentoring younger women because they worry about saying something inappropriate or being falsely accused of misconduct.
It is not clear what effects these developments may have on women naming their accusers and how they do so. Some believe it makes fewer women want to step forward. Others believe it may only help to temper the medium women use to shed light on sexual harassment incidents that they experienced.