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Facebook must do more to become a haven of gender equality

As the social networking giant introduces 56 new gender options, activist Sarah Gibson explains why it needs to go further.

Avatar of Alessia Valenza

24th February 2014 10:33

Alessia Valenza | ILGA North America

I have to admit that I rather enjoy using Facebook and like a lot of people I probably spend far too much time connected to what is the centre of my virtual presence. Therefore I wholeheartedly welcome Facebook’s latest move to provide more gender options for you to pick from, but with the vast amount of praise being heaped upon Facebook for this, you might be mislead into believing that the social networking site is now a haven for people of all gender identities. 

At the heart of Facebook is people and, unfortunately, they don’t tend to leave their prejudices on the real world side of their computer monitors. If you delve into the darker areas of Facebook you’ll find thousands of pages, groups and photos all containing transphobic slurs and encouraging others to belittle or attack trans people.

Even Facebook’s own post about these new options has become targeted by people aggressively denouncing the move and trans people in general.

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