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#ScaryStats - Uncovering Inequality One Statistic at a Time

Did you know that in the US, on a yearly basis, an average of over 220,000 women die during botched abortions? Neither did I until I started researching this article. #ScaryStats is one of the latest, and most alarming hashtag trends and the focal point is inequality. All the posts that fly this banner are designed to reveal startling statistics about inequality and prejudice, and it relates to everyone from women to ethnic minorities to members of the LGBT community, with one common thread - it's all shocking.

It kicked off last Friday, in concordance with Halloween, the idea being to show people something a little bit more frightening than someone far smaller than Tom Hardy trying to pull off a Bane outfit. It was started by a group of different women's rights groups - the Latino-centric COLOR, sexual health advocacy group Healthy and Free Tennessee, human rights group SisterSong and MomsRising, who focus on awareness and help to combat the issues faced by struggling mothers, whatever the source of the struggle might be. Also involved with the organisation of it were Steadfast Strategies, a non-profit consultancy firm.

As well as Halloween, the campaign was intended to coincide with World Statistics Day, and it was very cleverly thematically balanced between the former and the latter so as to maximise engagement and reach. It quickly spread out beyond women's rights issues as scores of posts emerged, scrolling through the feed reveals an unending stream of disturbing statistical imbalances, the vast majority of which I was almost completely unaware of.

Twitter is frequently repurposed as a conduit for calls to action, but it's often ineffective, as its by-the-minute ticker format means that people will often forget the impetus behind a particular tweet mere minutes afterwards. While this one might not break that chain of fad culture and disinterest, if it carries on at a steady pace, it might encourage people to focus more on statistical information, rather than hearsay, to make an important point. Written arguments are easy to massage, manipulate and take out of context but numbers don't lie. If this starts a trend in the way vital information is shared, it will do a great deal of good.

Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. Follow him @CallumAtSMF

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#ScaryStats - Uncovering Inequality One Statistic at a Time Reviewed by Unknown on Tuesday, November 03, 2015 Rating: 5

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