'Stranger Things' star Millie Bobby Brown quits Twitter after cruel abuse from trolls
The internet has opened the world up in myriad ways. It's amazing that people from all corners of the globe can share their experiences, whether it's of the personal, cultural, or political variety. We can see protests in one country, get live coverage of an event in progress in another, or simply talk about the latest movie to take the box office by storm.
However, while this inter-connectivity has its benefits, it also gives us the privilege of anonymity - allowing people to freely act in anti-social (and sometimes psychopathic, let's be honest) ways and find communities that relish this kind of abusive behaviour.
As usage of social media platforms like Twitter has been on the rise, we've seen the attention people receive quickly turn into something a lot worse.
Unfortunately, there are countless examples of users (usually women) who have spoken out on certain issues, only to receive death threats, insults, and in many cases, their home address shared online. Earlier this month we became aware that Kelly Marie Tran, who recently starred in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, had deleted all of her Instagram posts because of the racist and sexist harassment she had received online for months on end.
Shockingly, she wasn't the only member of the cast this happened to. Daisy Ridley, the lead in the latest trilogy, deleted her Instagram account in 2016, reportedly for receiving a nasty backlash for her views.
Rian Johnson, the director of The Last Jedi, commented on the controversy afterwards - explaining that the trolls who conduct themselves in this manner do not represent the fandom, but are instead just a small, horrible, part of it.
In addition to this, co-stars Mark Hamill and John Boyega also came forward to show their love and support for Tran, while those in the fandom that loved and appreciated her role in the series came out in full force.
This kind of response isn't relegated to the Star Wars fandom, however. Now, it appears that actress Millie Bobby Brown, who plays Eleven in the hit Netflix series Stranger Things, has decided to leave social media. According to Variety, the actress made the decision to delete her Twitter account following criticism, bullying, and abuse from fans and trolls.
For the past seven months or so, the hashtag #TakeDownMillieBobbyBrown has plagued the actress, with photos of Brown being altered to make her appear homophobic. Meme-generators would take selfies and other photos of Brown and add homophobic slurs and statements.
It's unclear exactly why this all started, but it's clearly become too much for Brown, who has halted her frequent posts on social media - leaving her Instagram account and her anti-bullying account, '@Milliestopshate', online.
Obviously, it's fine to not like a character or the movie/TV show they're in. It's also fine to not particularly like the actor or actress behind them. But if you find yourself sending that person hateful messages, or organising with others to harass them (as some groups did with Kelly Marie Tran), you've stepped over the line in a major way.