Study shows: the image of women in social media is anything but emancipated

Equal rights between the sexes, equal pay, new distribution of roles in the household? It would be nice! The role of men and women in social media is unfortunately very old-fashioned. At least that is what a recent study shows.

Actually, today's youth is pretty cool. She takes to the streets, she is active and accuses. She has long since internalized tolerance and openness towards others, never before have LGBTQ, diversity and bodyshaming topics been so present.
It's just a shame that it still shows that there is still a lot to be done when it comes to equality and equal opportunities. Because the old role models around men and women hold up like Patex - like a representative survey on behalf of the children's rights organization 'Plan International ' under 1.000 women and men between 14 and 32 years of age.

We have summarized the most important facts for you.

Dusty role models: Incredible but true

The roles are clearly assigned in social networks. Girls and women are interested in topics such as fashion, beauty, nutrition and decoration, while boys and men are more interested in politics, society and games.
57 percent of men and 35 percent of women are of the opinion that housework is still a woman's job. Women and men who use social networks less often don't see it as terrifying: only 47 percent of men and 31 percent of women agree with this thesis.
And: There are quite classic ideas, such as man or. Woman should be. Women are considered beautiful if they are slim and pretty - men, on the other hand, if they are athletic and muscular. And in order to comply with this ideal of beauty, 94 percent of women and 87 percent of men say that they use filters and co. optimize.
Particularly frightening: a third of the girls and women surveyed and more than half of the boys and men who use Instagram, Facebook and YouTube every day think it's completely OK that women earn less than men. (Among the less social media-savvy respondents, only 17 percent said that to women and 29 percent of men).

The irritating thing is that three quarters of the women surveyed and 61 percent of the men said they were very concerned about equality.

-> You can find more information about the study by 'Plan International ' here.

Gone away potential

This fact is more than regrettable, because the social networks in particular have a strong role model function and a great influence - especially on young people who are still looking for orientation and role models. Half of all respondents said that the people they met on Instagram & Co. would serve as a role model for them. So this means: Be on Instagram & Co. old role models and clichés are preserved and celebrated, so that slows down any equality quite hard.
And that's really annoying. Because with the help of Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest and Co. one could move a lot. That is why we should also use the platforms specifically to change our society for the better. Because actions like meetoo, WirSindMehr and FridaysforFuture have already proven that this works.

Women put on make-up - men make politics

But despite counter-movements such as nomakeup, nofilter, the large amount of what we see on social networks remains a beautiful and extremely perfect world of appearance based on classic role models. This was also shown by a study by the MaLisa Foundation 2019, which dealt with self-portrayals by men and women on YouTube and Instagram. According to the study, while women give make-up tips, men tend to turn to topics such as music, games, comedy and politics.
Nevertheless, we can change something and help break out of roles. And for this we should use the power of images. For example, through the conscious representation of emancipated role models and the renunciation of clichéd depictions of gender norms.
And that applies above all to the well-known influencers with their incredible number of followers. They are role models for many young people - they have a great opportunity to promote social change in favor of equality and thus to make a contribution to a more modern, progressive and fairer world. So: Away with the make-up tubes and here with the really important things!

Video: IHaveDasRecht: We raise our voices on International Women's Day

Your browser cannot play this video.

Video by Tanja Koch