Monica Lewinsky’s TED Talk ‘The Price of Shame’ gains 10 million views
Monica Lewinsky is a globally respected anti-bullying advocate and has one of the most viewed TED Talks of all time.
In 1998, the former White House intern’s love affair with President Bill Clinton became the focus of a history-changing federal investigation into her private life and Monica became the first prominent victim of cyber-bullying. Today, after 20 years of living in the shadow of that period, she has a public role, speaking out about on-line abuse, privacy, compassion and gender equality.
Lewinsky’s message is both powerful and timely, as cyber-bullying is a growing problem in society with devastating consequences. Her call for a safer and more compassionate social media environment have been well received all over the world. In 2015, her TED Talk, ‘The Price of Shame’ received a standing ovation at the Global TED Annual Meeting in Vancouver and is now in the top ten of most viewed TED Talks of all time.
Speaking of her own personal experience, Monica said, “I went from being a private figure to being publicly humiliated by many people with no knowledge of the truth or actual event.” “I was branded a tart, a slut, a bimbo. I lost my reputation and my dignity and I almost lost my life.”
Monica is now a Diana Award Anti-Bullying Ambassador and a board member of the Garrett Snider Foundation, which focuses on fostering resilience in children. She has become very aware that she is not alone when it comes to public humiliation. According to the i-SAFE foundation, over 25% of adolescents and teens have been bullied repeatedly through their cell phones or the Internet. In 2016, Monica launched a specially-designed anti-bullying emojis app with Vodafone to help victims suffering from low self-esteem.
As a contributing editor at Vanity Fair, Monica has written numerous articles on public humiliation, bullying and most recently Internet trolls. She believes that what we need is a cultural revolution, because presently there exists a culture of humiliation that not only encourages and revels in shadenfreude, but also rewards those who humiliate others from the ranks of the paparazzi to the gossip bloggers. “The more we saturate our culture with public shaming, the more accepted it is, the more we will see behaviour like cyberbullying, trolling, hacking and on-line harassment,” she warns.