On this week's episode of WHO magazine’s TV podcast, Binge List, the team weigh in on Is Australia Sexist? (airs Tues., Dec. 4 at 8.40pm; SBS), the new documentary hosted by Yumi Stynes that is causing controversy ahead of its release. The documantary examines The Global Gender Gap Report, 2017, which shows Australia has dropped down to 35th place in world rankings for gender equality.
Stynes examines pay disparity and introduces us to some shocking “experiments”, including one that sees her sign up for Tinder, and then read aloud some of the shocking, misogynistic and just-plain-gross messages she receives after posting her profile.
Stynes then goes on to meet up with one of the men who sent her the comments, to call him out on his behaviour and ask why he did it - and it makes for pretty confronting viewing. It’s a fabulously illustrative way to get the point across that young women are receiving abusive comments online in startling numbers, and that it’s symptom of a wider problem we have in Australia.
So why are so many people annoyed with her on social media?
After a well-known entertainment journalist posted footage of the interaction from the documentary on Twitter, he was inundated with comments from people saying she should never have “put herself in the position”.
"Can’t fathom what a married woman with 4 children is doing on Tinder in the first place ... What staged & dangerous rubbish @SBS !! She’s lucky this sick game didn’t backfire,” posted one Twitter user.
“Is she for real.... it’s friggin Tinder what did you expect, flowers and chocolates?” asks another.
Like every other woman who puts herself out there on dating sites, whether just for sex, or to form a lasting connection, Stynes says she just expects some common decency. And not to be cat called. And slut shamed. And made to feel like a tramp.
Is that too much to ask?
Shame on you, social media trolls. Shame on you ANYONE who’s ever written anything like that - we can all do better.
First step? Watch Is Australia Sexist? And stop piling on Stynes for taking the brave step to call this behaviour out.
Hear more about what the Binge List team thought about Is Australia Sexist? in this week's episode (below).