I will be the first to say that I eagerly await the release of a new “Celebrities Read Mean Tweets” segment from The Jimmy Kimmel Show. I find it funny, and I know it is 100% mean-spirited. I would personally NEVER tweet something rude to a celebrity or anyone else for that matter.
And I don’t think it is the actual tweets that are funny per se, it’s more the celebrity’s reactions and how they read the tweets.
But a new ad campaign highlights why the segment isn’t really as funny as we (see: I) think it is.
The Canadian Safe School Network takes the format and flips it on its head with their version “Kids Read Mean Tweets”. It is exactly what you would expect: teenagers reading the mean tweets that have been sent to them.
And it is gut wrenching.
“It’s easy to laugh at rich celebrities reading some of the terrible things people have said about them online. We condone it. We even revel in it,” says Canadian Safe School Network in a press release.
“But this same behavior is turning almost 40 percent of Canadian kids into victims of cyberbullying. It’s a growing epidemic that invades their lives and leaves many feeling like there’s no way out.”
Cyberbullying is a serious issue, and Canadian Safe School Network is trying to highlight that by turning humour on its head. While it may be funny to us when it happens to celebrities “who have the maturity and confidence to overcome these hurtful words,” when need to remember that kids don’t.
“For regular kids, words can cut like a knife,” says Stu Auty, President of the Canadian Safe School Network. “Cyber-bullying is an epidemic that invades their lives and leaves many feeling like there’s no way out.”
So next time you read something terrible about a celebrity, try to think it you were in their shoes or, worse, if your child was.