Monday, November 21, 2011

Raising Awareness?

I recently received this message in my Facebook inbox:

Remember the status about our bra color or where we put our purse?? It made more people aware of the problem as it went viral on FB and made the news.

Don't tell any MEN what the status means! Copy, and resend this message to all your girl friends, let's see if we can make it work like before, keep them guessing, let's see if we make the news!

The idea is to use your birthday: month and day only-- no year!
Write: 1. I am going to live in (see corresponding city for your BD month below).
2. For (day of your BD in months).
3. Add a happy face.

Example: If your birthday is February 14th, then you would write: I am going to live in London for 14 months
January - Mexico
February - London
March - Miami
April - Dominican Republic
May - France
June - St. Petersburg
July - Austria
August - Germany
September - New York
October - Amsterdam
November - Las Vegas
December -Columbia

The person who sent this to me then changed her status to her sentence. Here are the comments on it:

(You can probably click it to make it bigger. Please enjoy my Paint skills at protecting the "innocent".)

Here are my problems with the message and the comments:

1. "It made more people aware of the problem...." Nowhere in this message do we learn for which problem we are raising awareness. I'm assuming it's breast cancer, since that's what everyone does, but how can we be sure? This brings me to...

2. How on earth is making people believe that you're living in another city/country for 1-31 months going to raise awareness about anything other than the fact that you enjoy misleading people because it's funny? Okay, so I'm exaggerating a bit, but still. "I'm going to live in New York for 27 months. :)" doesn't tell anyone "Breast Cancer is a serious problem that can affect both men and women of any age. Get screened early and donate to the research for the cure." It tells people that I'm going to live in New York for 27 months and I'm happy about it. Big whoop, especially since it's not true.

3. The previous messages were about bra color and where you keep your purse. Bra color seemed a little weird to me. Changing your status to a color isn't that weird, but the guys do catch on, and conversations about underwear are not appropriate to place on the internet where anyone and everyone can see them. For the purse one, you were supposed to say where you keep your purse in a sentence starting with "I like it...". So, "I like it on the floor," or "I like it on the counter." We all know what this is insinuating and it's lewd and inappropriate. Not to mention, how are either of these statuses (bras and purses) supposed to raise awareness for anything other than your own ignorance and lemming-ness. "Oh yes, everyone else is posting private information that should remain private, so I will, too." "Oh yes, this seems kind of inappropriate, but everyone else is doing it." GET A SPINE, PEOPLE! AND WHILE YOU'RE PURCHASING THAT, BUY A BRAIN, TOO!

4. Back to the girl's status - note that everyone believes her for a long time. Then her mom spoils the fun by saying it's not real. Then she gets upset at her mom, who apologizes for telling the truth. Okay, so if you're a girl, we'll let you in on the secret. But boys are just going to be stuck thinking that all the women they know are going to be leaving the state/country for 1-31 months. Wow. What is this - 2nd grade? "NO BOYS ALLOWED" "Girls rule, boys drool." Etc.

In a similar note, I also see lots of statuses to raise awareness for this or that, which don't bother me. What bothers me is when they say "91% of people won't repost this. Will you?" Really? First of all, where the heck did you come up with that number? Second, of course I won't repost this, because it's full of poor grammar. Third, it's like those stupid chain emails you used to get that pressured you to email them to 58 people in the next 3 minutes or your wish won't come true.

I don't mind that people are trying to raise awareness. Breast cancer (and diabetes, and bullying, and dragon attacks) is a serious issue and it's wise for us to know about it and be prepared. But please just think before you repost something. Is this really going to raise awareness? - Or is the organization/problem not even mentioned? Is it going to make people aware? - Or annoyed at you for posting your 4th awareness status yet today?

In the meantime, I just wanted you all to know that I'm going to New York for 27 months. :)

(Now go get screened for cancer!)

Love and Annoyance,

1 comment:

  1. I love this! I have been having the same rant for years. Don't even get me started during October (breast cancer month)...