Sunday 4 December 2016

Julia Molony: Slut-shaming is a real teenage threat

Of all the bogeymen parents fear, conservative bullying might be the worst

Published 13/01/2013 | 05:00

All credit to parents of teenagers in our age. It must take nerves of steel to raise them. Last week, the prophets of doom on the interweb brought more bad news of the latest destructive teenage trend.

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Slut-shaming (it sounds made up, I know, but it's real, just ask Wikipedia) is the practice of kids, or to be specific, girls, taking to social networking sites to call each other out over their indecent choice of clothing.

On the surface of it, it seems quite a turn up for the books. Perhaps today's young ladies have embraced the ethics of the Women's Institute and collectively swallowed an editorial line about decency from the Daily Mail? Whatever their inspiration, the phenomenon is becoming common. Behind cloaking avatars and usernames, teenagers gather in virtual herds to chant things like "did your mother really let you out like that?" and "shame on you!" Or, presumably, stronger, more explicit and more bitchy variations on that theme.

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