Tweeting About Sexism Can Improve Female Wellbeing

Author: British Psychological Society
Published: Friday 30th January 2015
Summary: Publicly tweeting about sexism could improve wellbeing by expressing in ways that feel like they can make a difference.


This is one of the findings of a study by Dr Mindi Foster, Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada that is published today, Friday 30 January 2015, in the British Journal of Social Psychology. The study was supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

Dr Foster explained:

"We know women can be badly affected by experiences of sexism and that responding publically can be stressful and risky. This study examined whether using Twitter to respond to sexism could be done in a public way without any negative effects to their wellbeing."

A total of 93 female undergraduate students were randomly assigned to one of three conditions regarding tweeting over a three day period.

All participants received information over the three days regarding topical issues around sexism in politics, the media and in universities for them to tweet about.

One group was required to tweet publically, another privately and the third group did not tweet at all.

They received no instructions regarding the number or the content of tweets they should undertake.

All participants completed mood questionnaires and wellbeing measures after they tweeted.

Tweets were also analysed for linguistic and emotional content. Emotions identified were: anger, discontent, sarcastic, shocked, surprise and sadness. The most common combination was surprise and discontent.

"Never knew there was this much sexism in politics! It's so disturbing! Shocked disgusted".

Analysis showed that the group of women who tweeted publically displayed feelings of increased wellbeing by the third day.

Neither of the other two groups showed any changes in wellbeing.

Dr Foster said: "We know that popular online campaigns such as EverydaySexism have empowered women to speak out and share their experiences. However, this study demonstrates how tweeting publically has the potential to improve women's wellbeing.

"More research is required to understand whether this form of collective action has any further health benefits."

Full paper title is 'Tweeting about sexism: The well-being benefits of a social media collective action.'


Similar Topics


From our Female Sexual Health section - Full List (21 Items)

Send us your coming events and LGBTQ related news stories.


LGBT Community Connectedness Differences Between LGB Republicans and LGB Democrats


Black Men and Sexual Minority Men Overrepresented in U.S. Among Commited Sex Offenders


Over Five Million LGBT Adults in the U.S. are Religious


Canada Reintroduces Legislation to Criminalize Conversion Therapy Related Conduct


No Difference in Health Outcomes for Transgender and Cisgender Parents


LGBT People 4 Times More Likely to be Victims of Violent Crime


Pathways Into Poverty for LGBTQ Adults Study


A Summary of Data on LGBT Suicide for Suicide Prevention Month



Tsara Shelton
"Storytellers are powerful and we are all storytellers," suggests Tsara Shelton, author of the book Spinning in Circles and Learning from Myself: A Collection of Stories that Slowly Grow Up..


LGBT Awareness & Events
List of important LGBT awareness dates and coming sexual diversity events.


Transgender Reporting Guide - English
Guide for those writing on transgender and LGBT community - Spanish Version.
Sexuality Definitions
List of definitions and glossary of sexual terms, abbreviations and their meanings.