Milling around by the bar, sipping the free wine I stealthily nicked from the graduate photography exhibition taking place next door, I didn't really know what to expect from the night, but was curious as a young feminist to hear what women more mature and socially aware than me, had to say on the matter.
The room is packed, pushing past a row of early birds I seat myself and wait. After five minutes of trying to work out how to use the microphone app on my smashed up Iphone and trying to remember remnants of shorthand, the panel enter to a round of applause.
Suzanne Moore – a woman after my own heart concerning her bushy barnet, FIFTEEN year old blogger Lilinaz Evans, comedienne Bridget Christie, No More Page 3 campaigner Lucy-Anne Holmes and deputy editor of The New Stateman, Helen Lewis sit themselves down with their glasses of tap water (kudos to Christie for carrying on a healthy pint).
The night didn't really reap any clear-cut answers in regards to whether social media has helped the fight on misogyny or not. However, with the unsettling statistic that 1 in 5 women will be the victim of a sexual assault in their life-time, campaigns such No More Page 3 sharing and retweeting with supporters drives home how fucking unfair this is.
Highlight of the night was blogger Lilinaz Evans, who at the tender age of fifteen articulated herself in a manner that was enviously self-assured, and left me wishing I had known myself as well at the same age. Her comparison between a rape threat being no less threatening online than it is in real-life definitely resonated with the panel and audience.
One thing is clear though – misogyny is a deep rooted abscess of our culture, and social media is without a doubt enabling it to breed.