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Entertainment Meghan Markle Suggests Instagram 'Dislike' Button to Stem the Tide of Negative Comments

22:26  10 november  2021
22:26  10 november  2021 Source:   people.com

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Meghan Markle thinks social media users needs better options than 'Like' or hate.

Speaking at the The New York Times DealBook Online Summit on Tuesday, The Duchess of Sussex floated the idea of adding a 'Dislike' button to platforms.

"One of the things that seems like such an easy solve from my lens, if you look at Instagram for example, there's a 'Like' button and then there's comments," she told host Andrew Ross Sorkin, an Editor at Large for the Times.

"So if you disagree with something you have to comment on it in a really vitriolic way," she continued. "If there was a 'Dislike' button, wouldn't that hugely shift what you were putting out there? Because you could just 'Like' it or just 'Dislike' it."

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She added, "Now you have to 'Like' it or say something negative. It is just adding to this really unfortunate cycle that I think is having an unfortunate effect on women across the world."

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Meghan, 40, made her comments to Sorkin and Ariel Investments' Co-C.E.O. and President Mellody Hobson during a conversation about economic and professional parity — though the event covered a wide range of topics, including Meghan's recent political engagement and one of her first business ventures selling scrunchies.

Meghan Markle who is smiling and looking at the camera: The Duchess of Sussex said adding one simple feature © Provided by People The Duchess of Sussex said adding one simple feature "seems like such an easy solve ... [for] this really unfortunate cycle that I think is having an unfortunate effect on women across the world"

She had traveled to New York with husband Prince Harry, 37, who also drilled down on the problems with media (both legacy and social) during Wired magazine's RE:WIRED virtual summit.

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The Sussexes know all too well the toll that social media toxicity can take — in the Wired panel, Harry cited an independent report that had found "more than 70 percent of the hate speech about my wife on Twitter can be traced to fewer than 50 accounts." He also implicated tabloid journalists in "amplifying the hate and the lies," saying they "regurgitate these lies as truth."

Case in point: The term "Megxit," which went viral after the couple announced their decision to step back as senior working royals in January 2020.

"The term 'Megxit' was or is a misogynistic term that was created by a troll, amplified by world correspondents, and it grew and grew and grew onto mainstream media. But it began with a troll," Harry said on Tuesday.

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Erik Pendzich/Shutterstock Meghan Markle and Prince Harry © Provided by People Erik Pendzich/Shutterstock Meghan Markle and Prince Harry

The Duke of Sussex also underlined the synergy between legacy media and social media in commodifying viral content to toxic ends — name-checking Succession's fictional media tycoon Logan Roy and real-life media mogul Rupert Murdoch.

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"This isn't just a social media problem. It's a media problem," he said. "I've grown up learning that news should be sacred ground. You don't have to be Logan Roy or Rupert Murdoch to understand that clickbait is the descendant of targeted advertising."

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And in her Times discussion, Meghan had a few more thoughts about media consumption: "Well, firstly I would urge you not to read tabloids. Because I don't think that's healthy for anyone," she told Sorkin.

"Hopefully," she added, "one day they come with a warning label like cigarettes do. Like, 'This is toxic for your mental health.'"

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