It doesn’t take long to whip up a feminist backlash. Women get a whiff of power and then people start freaking out that we can’t be trusted to handle it.
But it’s not the blokes patronising the little ladies about ‘going too far’. This time, as the song goes, we’re doing it for ourselves.
2012 will go down as the year that women and enlightened men united to call out examples of sexism and misogyny with tools such as #destroythejoint and #notbuyingit.
Social media gave us a new and powerful avenue to publicly hold individuals, institutions and corporations to account for sexist and misogynistic behaviour.
But the technology is only part of the story. The real change was social.
Just as Julia Gillard let rip after years of enduring sexist nonsense, women across the county found the courage to speak out.
Up until this point, the fear of being seen as over-sensitive, humourless bitches had gagged women who were offended, objectified and belittled by sexist media, sexist corporations and sexist workplaces.
And for the most part, campaigns like #notbuyingit and #destroythejoint have been remarkably civil and abuse-free.
But as the victories started to mount — such as Alan Jones’ fall from grace, Carlton Draught’s backpedaling after its ironing promotion, the outing of St John’s sexist culture, a bar renaming its ‘Winey Bitch’ and ‘Red-Headed Slut’ cocktails, and the cancellation of a schoolgirl jelly wrestling contest — the muttering about whether it’s all got out of hand began.