The week in hashtags – #BandAid30, #WeBackEd, #ChokingGirlsAroundTheWorld

Charity, equality campaigns and Princess Bride memes stick a band-aid on the broken internet… it’s our round-up of must-see hashtags from the past week.


We all know it’s Christmas now, because Band Aid’s latest incarnation has landed. Featuring the likes of Ellie Goulding, Sam Smith and Ed Sheeran alongside One Direction (naturally) and Bono (of course), Bob Geldof’s irrepressible creation has been revived on its 30th anniversary to raise funds for Ebola relief.

Some of the song’s more questionable lyrics have been changed this time round, which hasn’t stopped the backlash – or the outpouring of donations either, with £1 million raised in five minutes after Geldof’s spot on The X Factor last night. Questions the internet is asking include: do we really need this charity single, when African musicians have already recorded their own? Did Adele really turn down the invite? And so what if she did? Why are Zoella and Alfie Deyes there? Was ‘#E30LA’ really the most tasteful choice of official hashtag? Is the whole thing patronising and egotistical – or is the money all that really matters?



This week, scientists made history by landing a spacecraft on the surface of a moving comet. Almost more impressive was the speed at which we moved from celebration and awe to whinging about everything humanity does slightly less well – such as politics, toilet design, putting apostrophes in hashtags or appearing on TV across the world without wearing a really offensive shirt.




Amid plummeting polls and rumours of a coup, supporters of Labour leader Ed Miliband started #WeBackEd last weekend as a display of solidarity on Twitter. Despite trending for 24 hours, the tag was a lukewarm success at best, as it was quickly hopped on and used by Miliband’s detractors – who also pointed out that only seven of his 23 shadow cabinet colleagues had joined in.

Sorry Ed. Next time, your choices are nudity or landing on a comet.



Another week, another misogynist clogging up our cyber highways. Just as news broke that homegrown sexist Dapper Laughs has had his ITV series cancelled, attention turned to another ‘pick up artist’, Julien Blanc. The ‘dating advice expert’, who has been promoting his world tour using the hashtag #ChokingGirlsAroundTheWorld, was forced to leave Australia early when his visa was withdrawn.

Now a petition asking the Home Office to refuse him entry to the UK has gathered more than 150,000 signatures,  supported by MPs Yvette Cooper and Lynne Featherstone among others. With Blanc’s tour due to pitch up in Britain on Friday, pressure is on Home Secretary Teresa May to make a call on his visa status – and decide how far the free speech argument really stretches.



By far the best thing to come out of TIME Magazine including ‘feminist’ in its Worst Words of 2014 poll (for which it has now apologised), Twitter amused itself in the way Twitter likes best this week – by turning cult classic The Princess Bride into a beautiful story of gender equality. Have fun storming the patriarchy? As you wish.



#BreaktheInternet and #FixtheInternet

You know what they say – if it ain’t broke, try to fix it anyway. There have been so many layers of backlash to Kim Kardashian’s back-flash that we’ve kind of lost track, but the gist is this: lady gets naked, magazine tries to ‘break the internet’, people get angry for various reasons, tweeters try to ‘fix the internet’ with, among other things, rants against public nudity and photos of classy old ladies such as the Dowager Countess of Grantham, Solange Knowles gets married, is not naked but tastefully clad in a white cape, and wins the internet*.

All we’re absolutely sure of is this: the internet appears to be working fine.

A photo posted by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on

*It isn’t actually possible to win the internet either, we checked.


Want to read more? We’ve chosen our 20 favourite coats and 16 favourite ankle boots to get ready for the winter weather.

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Lauren Bravo