Meknes - Several teenagers started the “Don’t Judge Me Challenge,” posting ugly pictures of themselves which then transform into pictures of themselves as “beautiful.” Does this challenge really discourage "body-shaming," or is it just a simple excuse to post a selfie?
Meknes – Several teenagers started the “Don’t Judge Me Challenge,” posting ugly pictures of themselves which then transform into pictures of themselves as “beautiful.” Does this challenge really discourage “body-shaming,” or is it just a simple excuse to post a selfie?
The challenge was intended to lead the world toward rethinking beauty and ugliness. Certainly, beauty (and hence ugliness) is not scientifically measurable, nor are these concepts absolutes. Everyone does not necessarily share the same tastes or follow the same trends. However, in this new challenge, teenagers have created a whole package of elements that define the beauty/ugliness stereotypes. There is now a new definition of ugliness; being ugly is having a unibrow, blackened and crooked teeth, crudely drawnred lips, and false acne.
elle a voulu faire le “don’t judge me challenge” mais c parti en couille dps elle est tjs comme ça pic.twitter.com/sOPC3WWQG2
— Océane (@une_bulle) August 3, 2015
Could beauty then mean the absence of these elements? Not in all cases. Philosophically, beauty means harmony in relation to “generally accepted social norms” or references. “If beauty remains “beautiful,” ugliness can sometimes be a charm. In his new book, “Ugly: The Aesthetics of Everything,” Stephen Bayley argues that ugliness is far more interesting than beauty.
This “Don’t Judge Me Challenge” focuses on the “me,”on one’s ego. Although it purports toleranceby saying someone can be beautiful even with his or her ugly side, it nevertheless causes us to return to a very Manichean vision. This paradox can program our brains through a labeling machine with dualities: beauty and ugliness, good and evil, white and black, right and wrong, happy and sad, and so on.
This challenge is said to have a purpose, unlike the #CharlieCharlieChallenge. Although its initial objective as told by YouTubers is to preach tolerance, the origin of this phenomenon remains unclear. However, the videos proliferated (See the hashtag #DontJudgeChallange with an “a”) when the blogger Em Ford posted a video of herself trying to remove her makeup, revealing her acne. North African YouTube and Instagram users have also participated inthis challenge. Morocco and Algeria were represented by several videos with thousands of views,in comparison with Tunisia which was representedon YouTube by a single person. Acrossthe world, the keyword #DontJudgeChallange(sic)has already been used more than 234,000 times on Instagram and more than 2 million times on Twitter in seven days, according to the Topsy analysis website.
Can’t believe people are still doing the #dontjudgechallenge ……it’s getting boring now ????????????
— Eddie (@EDDIECAUCAU) August 19, 2015
Beyond the “Don’t Judge Challenge”
This new phenomenon deserves further study. Some observations are worth a closer look. For example, girls are more involved with this challenge than boys. Those who consider themselves the least attractive make themselves as uglyas possible to reduce the “paradox distance” and make it more shocking. The fake duck face is used frequently. Girls who are not famous never show their real face without makeup. The choice of music is not necessarily random. The use of products in these videos may be a matter of advertising. Many teens say clearly that they make these videos or watch them for fun.
Not only was this phenomenoncriticized because it led to death or facial disfiguration (the case of Shawn Jackson, 22, of Miami who died from severe self-inflicted injuries), but also because it offended many people who are sick ofhaving a unibrow. While some consider that the cult of appearance, although deceptive, is more apparent in these videos, others consider them to be self-parody or, perhaps, simply hypocrisy.
Thisonline trend then has not made everyone laugh. To counter it, the #BeautyInAllChallenge was created to show one’s body parts thatare most criticized by others. In this sense, YouTube star Miranda Sings posted a video keeping the same face with a big red mouth. Others made their videos, but with a different purpose. Oneyoung girl, Jamie-Lee Girvan, without naming her illness, posted picturesshowing herselfwith makeup and carefully styled hair and thenwithout makeup or wig.According to the Huffington Post, this girl accompanied her video (which has 6,000,000 visits and 150,000 shares) witha message to those who enjoyed it. “To every **** and **** who uses eyeliner to make a unibrow to get ugly. Remove your makeup … As you’re ugly with makeup. You should remove all these things and stop judging us because we were born to be different. So be yourself and stay happy.”
Some young people participated in the “Don’t Judge Me Challenge;” others judged the “Don’t Judge.”But, finally, what will be the next challenge for young people in this new world of social media?
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