Imperial Cleaning

The 25 Most Influential People on the Internet

In France, women took to the streets chanting not only "Me too" but also " Balance ton porc ," which translates roughly to "Expose your pig," a hashtag conceived by French journalist Sandra Muller. State media has labeled her a traitor, a charge that can merit up to 20 years in prison—proof that, even as Saudi Arabia appears to modernize, there can be high costs to challenging the leadership.


But part of what makes the year-old singer and entrepreneur so successful on the Internet is her own ability to listen. She listened and heard that there was a large segment of the population that felt underserved by the beauty and fashion industries, and she responded with her wildly successful makeup line, Fenty Beauty , and lingerie line, Savage x Fenty.

The money—and the followers—are pouring in, with no signs of slowing. FDR had the radio. The President rode to the office of the presidency on a character soapbox now and has since turned it into the ultimate presidential bully pulpit. The Bronx natives met during summer school but reconnected years later on Twitter, where their pithy, street-smart jokes earned them retweets, replies and followers galore. Their combined following on Twitter currently clocks in at more than a million.

No matter what, his online persona—with 28 million followers—keeps him squarely in the public eye. With one simple prompt, an year-old high school student from Georgia divided the entire internet. After his friend discovered an audio recording on vocabulary. He posted the clip on Reddit, thinking it would get lost among thousands of other posts.

Instead, it quickly garnered more than 3, upvotes within three days. It only became more popular after year-old YouTuber Cloe Feldman re-posted the clip to more than two hundred thousand Twitter followers.

From there, it became a viral sensation, generating headlines and prompting reactions from celebrities, the White House and even the singer Yanni himself. In many ways, Yanny vs. Laurel was reminiscent of The Dress as people debated fiercely for days over what they believed.

But her international recognition may have been her undoing. In May, al—Nafjan, along with several other Saudi human rights activists, was detained and jailed on unspecified charges. State media has labeled her a traitor, a charge that can merit up to 20 years in prison—proof that, even as Saudi Arabia appears to modernize, there can be high costs to challenging the leadership. Rogowsky was getting ready to leave New York, where he had pursued a comedy career, for life in Los Angeles when he snagged a hosting audition for HQ Trivia, a live game app promising cash prizes to winners.

Known by affectionate nicknames like Quiz Daddy or Trap Trebek, Rogowsky—and his puns—are a big part of why so many people hanker for their HQ Trivia fix each day. While a team of writers usually prepares material for Rogowsky, the onetime improv comedian frequently goes off script and his humor and style keep players returning to the game.

Since taking office in June , Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte , 73, has developed a reputation for rape jokes and sexist comments. Since then, Filipinas across the country have spoken out, including Congress representatives and a former Duterte cabinet member. Some called for his resignation and more protests are planned in July. Most kids play with toys. But this 6-year-old has made a career of it.

Thanks largely to a video in which Ryan, then 3, reviewed toys at once , his YouTube channel, Ryan ToysReview , became a viral phenomenon.

King first rose to prominence alongside the Black Lives Matter movement after using Twitter to share details about the death of Michael Brown, the year-old who was fatally shot by a police officer in Ferguson, Mo. At the time, King, a former pastor turned journalist and activist, had , followers; now he counts more than a million.

But his mission remains the same: More recently, he asked his followers to identify a white man recorded on video screaming and threatening to call ICE on Spanish-speaking workers at a New York restaurant.

Liu and Schuyler are using their Instagram account, Diet Prada, to draw it. In some instances, the accused offenders have attempted to make amends. Later that month, Diet Prada shamed Target for selling a T-shirt bearing an illustration of a rainbow flag that was nearly identical to the work of a lesser-known Mexican artist. The retailer pulled the shirt from its website.

But what began as a mix of Hollywood and Washington gossip—Drudge made a name for himself in as the first news source to publish the Bill Clinton-Monica Lewinsky affair after Newsweek initially withheld their coverage—has quickly exploded into a hotbed of aggregated news articles from a variety of factual sources.

The site keeps no archives, and Matt Drudge himself deletes his tweets daily, which allows him to remake the site anew every day.

But the site remains a powerful driver of web traffic and the spread of political news online, with over a billion monthly page views. Now she counts nearly 10 million Instagram followers and her signature app, Sweat, has been downloaded more than 30 million times. On social media, she posts inspirational sayings, gym selfies and before-and-after photos from her online acolytes— just check the popular BBG hashtag. Last October, an anonymous user, known simply as Q, started posting cryptic messages on the controversial message board 4chan—the common theme being that President Trump is a secret genius and his opponents, namely Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, are evil.

Crystal Washington was thrilled when she was hired as a hospitality coordinator at the Plaza, a storied hotel whose allure is as strong for people who want to work there as it is for those who can afford a suite.

But then, she says, a co-worker began making crude remarks to her like "I can tell you had sex last night" and groping her. One of those encounters was even caught on camera, but the management did not properly respond, her lawyers say. I have an year-old daughter, and she's depending on me,' says Lewis, who still works at the hotel to make ends meet. I wasn't really left with the option of leaving. I'm not left with the option of giving up.

I want to show her that it's O. If you keep fighting, eventually you'll see the sun on the other side. Washington has joined with six other female employees to file a sexual-harassment suit against the hotel. But she cannot afford to leave the job and says she must force herself out of bed every day to face the man she's accused. Other women, like the actor Selma Blair, weathered excruciating threats.

Blair says she arrived at a hotel restaurant for a meeting with the independent film director James Toback in only to be told that he would like to see her in his room. There, she says, Toback told her that she had to learn to be more vulnerable in her craft and asked her to strip down.

She took her top off. She says he then propositioned her for sex, and when she refused, he blocked the door and forced her to watch him masturbate against her leg. Afterward, she recalls him telling her that if she said anything, he would stab her eyes out with a Bic pen and throw her in the Hudson River. Blair says Toback lorded the encounter over her for decades.

Many of the people who have come forward also mentioned a different fear, one less visceral but no less real, as a reason for not speaking out: The Besh Group says it is implementing new policies to create a culture of respect. Besh apologized for "unacceptable behavior" and "moral failings," and resigned from the company. Iwu, the lobbyist, says she considered the same risks after she was groped in front of several colleagues at an event.

She was shocked when none of her male co-workers stepped in to stop the assault. The next week, she organized women to sign an open letter exposing harassment in California government.

When she told people about the campaign, she says they were wary. After the Oregon state senator accused her fellow legislator Jeff Kruse of sexual harassment, the statehouse launched an investigation and stripped him of his committee assignments.

And that means we have to be willing to speak out when it's a member of our own party. Kruse said in a statement that he never touched Gelser inappropriately. The mother of two told the HR department at the hospital where she worked that an executive there repeatedly came on to her. Why couldn't I force words out of my mouth? When I got home, I crumbled. I kept thinking, Did I do something, did I say something, did I look a certain way to make him think that was O.

Taylor Swift says she was made to feel bad about the consequences that her harasser faced. After she complained about a Denver radio DJ named David Mueller, who reached under her skirt and grabbed her rear end, Mueller was fired. He sued Swift for millions in damages. Mueller's lawyer asked her, on the witness stand, whether she felt bad that she'd gotten him fired.

Actors and writers and journalists and dishwashers and fruit pickers alike: What had manifested as shame exploded into outrage. She reported him to his radio station, KYGO, and he was terminated. He said her accusations were false and sued Swift.

This man hadn't considered any formalities when he assaulted me Why should I be polite? Mueller's lawyer did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

This was the great unleashing that turned the MeToo hashtag into a rallying cry. The phrase was first used more than a decade ago by social activist Tarana Burke as part of her work building solidarity among young survivors of harassment and assault.

A friend of the actor Alyssa Milano sent her a screenshot of the phrase, and Milano, almost on a whim, tweeted it out on Oct. She woke up the next day to find that more than 30, people had used MeToo.

Milano burst into tears. At first, those speaking out were mostly from the worlds of media and entertainment, but the hashtag quickly spread. By November, California farmworkers, Pascual among them, were marching on the streets of Hollywood to express their solidarity with the stars.

Women were no longer alone. Pezqueda filed a suit alleging that her supervisor at the Terranea Resort, a luxury retreat in South California, pursued her for months.

When she rebuffed him, he changed her schedule and cut her hours. The reality of being a woman is the same—the difference is the risk each woman must take. Attorneys for the staffing company that employed Pezqueda deny her allegations. Terranea Resort declined to comment except to say that the suit involves an outside agency. Lipman accused a former agent, Tyler Grasham, of sexually assaulting him when he was Grasham has since been dismissed by his agency and is being investigated by the Los Angeles Police Department.

And gay men are often highly sexualized in the media, so coming out with a story of sexual assault, especially one that also involved alcohol and maybe drugs, there is an idea that 'Well, did you want it?. Grasham never represented Lipman. Discussions of sexual harassment in polite company tend to rely on euphemisms: That's one of the reasons why the Access Hollywood tape that surfaced in October was such a jolt. The language used by the man who would become America's 45th President, captured on a recording, was, by any standard, vulgar.

He didn't just say that he'd made a pass; he "moved on her like a bitch. That Donald Trump could express himself that way and still be elected President is part of what stoked the rage that fueled the Women's March the day after his Inauguration.

It's why women seized on that crude word as the emblem of the protest that dwarfed Trump's Inauguration crowd size. Megyn Kelly, the NBC anchor who revealed in October that she had complained to Fox News executives about Bill O'Reilly's treatment of women, and who was a target of Trump's ire during the campaign, says the tape as well as the tenor of the election turned the political into the personal. McGowan reached a settlement with producer Harvey Weinstein in after accusing him of sexually assaulting her in a hotel room.

McGowan's decision to speak to the press this year helped expose Weinstein as a serial harasser. People forget a lot that there's a human behind this, someone who is very hurt. It fuels my fire. They really f-cked with the wrong person. So it was not entirely surprising that began with women donning "pussy hats" and marching on the nation's capital in a show of unity and fury. What was startling was the size of the protest. It was one of the largest in U. Summer Zervos, a former contestant on The Apprentice , was one of roughly 20 women to accuse the President of sexual harassment.

She filed a defamation suit against Trump days before his Inauguration after he disputed her claims by calling her a liar. A New York judge is expected to decide soon if the President is immune to civil suits while in office. No matter the outcome, the allegations added fuel to a growing fire. By February, the movement had made its way to the billionaire dream factories of Silicon Valley, when Fowler spoke out about her "weird year" as an engineer at Uber.

Wendy Walsh, a psychologist and former guest on the network, was one of the first women to share her story about the star anchor—but she was initially reluctant to go on the record. Eventually she allowed her name to be used. The downfall of O'Reilly, who has denied all allegations of harassment, would prove to be just the beginning of the reckoning in media and entertainment.

In June, Bill Cosby was brought to trial on charges that he had drugged and sexually assaulted a woman named Andrea Constand, one of nearly 50 women who have accused Cosby of sexual assault over several decades. Although the case ended in a mistrial—it is scheduled to be retried in April—the fact that it happened at all signaled a shift in the culture, a willingness to hold even beloved and powerful men accountable for past misdeeds.

I dipped out of the industry. When I came back, I was put in a sausage dress. The hair got blonder and the cleavage got deeper and the heels higher. Fox had created a sort of Snapchat filter: Part of what happened to the women at Fox News started in the makeup room. When she quit her job as social-media manager at the restaurant group of celebrity chef John Besh, Reynolds sent an email to her bosses complaining about the company's culture of sexism.

She later filed a complaint with the EEOC. Besh has since stepped down. I'm just a person from a small town in Texas. I have no money, no power, no social standing. And they have more power and money than I will ever have. I felt extremely vulnerable and scared. Then I heard from women I had never met—they worked as line cooks while I worked in corporate—who had experienced the same toxic culture.

The company said it is working to enact policies to create a culture of safety and respect. Besh has apologized for 'unacceptable' behavior and 'moral failings,' and resigned. Complaints at the University of Rochester helped expose harassment in academia. Then, in early October, the dam finally broke.

The revelation was quickly followed by New Yorker investigations that widened Weinstein's list of accusers and showed the incredible lengths he went to cover his tracks. Weinstein denied the allegations, but the levers that he had long pulled to exert his influence suddenly were jammed. Fellow chieftains refused to defend him. Politicians who once courted him gave away his donations. His company's board fired him. Within days, the head of Amazon Studios, an influential art publisher and employees at the financial-services firm Fidelity had all left their jobs over harassment claims.

By the end of the month, the list of the accused had grown to include political analyst Mark Halperin, a former TIME employee; opinion-shaping literary critic Leon Wieseltier; and numerous politicians and journalists.

The Oscar-winning actor Kevin Spacey was scrubbed from a completed movie. In the wake of the revelations about Harvey Weinstein, Pascual spoke out at a march in L. When the man was harassing me, he threatened to harm my children and me—that's why I kept quiet. I cried and cried. But, thank God, my friends in the fields support me. So I said, Enough. I lost the fear. It doesn't matter if they criticize me. I can support other people who are going through the same thing. The response to the Weinstein allegations has shaped the way people view women who come forward.

The movement—and fallout—quickly spread around the world. Michael Fallon, Britain's Defense Secretary, quit the Cabinet after journalist Jane Merrick revealed that he had "lunged" at her in , when she was a year-old reporter.

In France, women took to the streets chanting not only "Me too" but also " Balance ton porc ," which translates roughly to "Expose your pig," a hashtag conceived by French journalist Sandra Muller. In the week after MeToo first surfaced, versions of it swept through 85 countries, from India, where the struggle against harassment and assault had already become a national debate in recent years, to the Middle East, Asia and parts in between.

Meyer says that Justin Caldbeck, a venture capitalist who invested in her first company, harassed her. After six other women reported harassment by Caldbeck, he resigned from his firm. I wanted to be able to get back to running my company and not have the daily distraction of being constantly emailed, called, text-messaged.

That took a lot of energy to deal with and to process and to try to bury—because I didn't want it to be a big deal. For so long, I went around harboring this ridiculous belief that because I was a nonwhite woman in my 20s that somehow it was expected that I would have to be treated this way. And now I see that that is so silly. I am a person with dignity. Caldbeck apologized in a statement to the women he 'made uncomfortable.

Hotel guests have propositioned and exposed themselves to Melara while she was working. I said, 'No, I don't even do it to my husband. I rushed to finish the room as fast as I could and get out of there. It's crazy that people think that if they pay for the room, they are paying for sexual service. By November, the spotlight was back on American politicians. A woman named Leigh Corfman told the Washington Post that Roy Moore, the Alabama Republican nominee for the Senate, abused her when she was 14 and he was a year-old assistant district attorney.

Nine women have come forward to describe inappropriate encounters with Roy Moore, including several who say he pursued them when they were teenagers. Moore has called the allegations "false" and "malicious.

There are ways to approach a woman, and if it's done with respect, it's O. Without respect, it's not good. Now if men want your love, they have to ask themselves how to be, how to approach a woman. We must restart all relationships from the beginning. We have to cleanse society to find a better way.

I'm sure the road will be long and difficult, but it will be positive in the end. Several other women have since come forward with similar harassment allegations against Franken, who has called on the Senate Ethics Committee to investigate his own behavior.

He has said that the allegations "are not accurate; they are not true. Farenthold denies that he engaged in any wrongdoing and has vowed to repay the settlement.

Fowler's February blog post about the harassment she experienced as an engineer at Uber went viral. Uber then launched an investigation that led to the ousting of its CEO Travis Kalanick and more than 20 other employees. So there were certain things that I thought I could avoid: I'm not going to do press right afterward, because they'll say I'm doing it for attention. I can't have any emotion in my blog. I have to be very, very detached.

The accused were both Democrats and Republicans, but the consequences thus far have been limited—and often filtered through a partisan lens. In politics, at least, what constitutes disqualifying behavior seemed to depend not on your actions but on the allegiance of your tribe.

Crews says Venit groped him in front of his wife at an industry event. Venit was briefly suspended from the agency. Nobody questions the predator. Because they just expect it. And I expect it. And I just said, 'No more. Let's talk about what the predator is doing. The agency said it had suspended and demoted Venit, who declined to comment. As another election cycle approaches, Americans find themselves trying to weigh one ugly act against another in a painful calculus of transgression.

Is a grope caught on camera more disqualifying than a years-ago assault that was credibly reported? What are we willing to forgive or ignore or deny if the violator shares our politics? It wasn't so long ago that the boss chasing his secretary around the desk was a comic trope, a staple from vaudeville to prime-time sitcoms. There wasn't even a name for sexual harassment until just over 40 years ago; the term was coined in by a group of women at Cornell University after an employee there, Carmita Wood, filed for unemployment benefits after she had resigned because a supervisor touched her.

The university denied her claim, arguing that she left the job for "personal reasons. University of Rochester professors Celeste Kidd right and Jessica Cantlon left , along with six current and former members of the brain and cognitive sciences department, filed complaints with the university and the EEOC, alleging harassment and retaliation. But eight of us linked arms and continued to pursue the complaint.

I think working together was powerful. It was hard to silence all of us. The university has launched an investigation led by former U. Attorney Mary Jo White.

Wood, joined by activists from the university's human-affairs program, formed a group called Working Women United that hosted an event for workers from various fields, from mail-room clerks and servers to factory workers and administrative assistants, to talk about their own harassment experiences. It was a proto-version of the social-media explosion we're seeing today, encouraging unity and reminding women that they were not alone. But even as public awareness about the problem of sexual harassment began to grow, legal and policy protections were almost nonexistent.

In the s, most businesses and institutions had no policies on sexual harassment whatsoever, and even egregious complaints were regularly dismissed. I never thought things could change for me.


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