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Real Life

Why I feel guilty about not going 'rainbow'

Facebook went all ‘rainbow’ on the weekend – so why do I feel guilty about not clicking along?

By Michelle Endacott
I am a huge supporter of same sex marriage, and think it’s high time we legalise it. But as I don’t have the time or energy to pursue any real activism, I decided not to ‘click rainbow’.
And I felt really guilty. Were all my friends looking at my profile, thinking that I didn’t support gay marriage, as they all madly went red, green and yellow? I felt like I should post something to explain my position, but why should I have to do this? Without anybody saying or posting a word, I was feeling peer pressure! All self-imposed, of course.
I did like some of the really clever posts that turned up – like an old journo friend who couldn’t work out the program to officially go ‘rainbow’, but instead posted a photo of a rainbow lorikeet visiting her Queensland backyard.
I felt vindicated this morning when I found a ‘conspiracy theory” story via The Atlantic, that – as Facebook had made this so easy to do – they were busily crunching numbers and profiles in a back room somewhere, to use the information for some sort of shadowy 'big data’ purpose.
And I also felt a bit better when I heard about ‘clicktivism’ – which is the art of ‘clicking’ on social media and feeling smug that you have done your bit – but then not following through in any way.
Yes, of course I support marriage equality. But I’m a little bit scared of Big Data – and to all my Facebook friends, please don’t hate me! And please invite me to your gay wedding.
Leo Di Caprio was one of the many celebrities to show his support with the rainbow profile picture.
Did you know more than 26 million people went rainbow in support of the LGBTQ community?
Stats rolling in from Facebook data suggest more than 26 million people globally changed their profile pictures using Facebook's rainbow filter to show their support for the LGBTQ community since the tool launched on Friday.
Those pictures received more than half a billion likes and comments (more than 565 million interactions to be more precise).
The rainbow filter was built by two interns during an internal hackathon at Facebook last week. It became so popular internally that there was interest in building this for the public. The team worked together over a couple of days to create this experience for users around the world just in advance of Pride weekend globally and the SCOTUS decision in the US.
Several public figures changed their profile photos using the rainbow filter including:
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Elizabeth Banks
Andy Cohen
Leo di Caprio
Arianna Huffington
E.L. James
Anne Hathaway
Russell Simmons
Elizabeth Warren, Senator from Massachusetts
Kamala Harris
Dilma Rousseff, President of Brazil
Did you go rainbow?

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