Article: New anti-bullying and anti-harassment guidelines introduced for the entertainment industry

Article: New anti-bullying and anti-harassment guidelines introduced for the entertainment industry

UnknownFebruary 17th, 2018: on the wake of the allegations of sexual assault and harassment in the film and sport industries, and following the coming together of the #metoo movement, new guidelines have been proposed for the film industry in the UK.

These new guidelines have been developed by the British Film Institute, BAFTA, BECTU, Equity, Pact, The Production Guild, Women in Film & TV, the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain, the U.K. Screen Alliance and U.K. Interactive Entertainment. The goal is to provide guidelines of behavior for both employee and employer, to provide support for victims, and to help build an inclusive environment. Among the initiatives is a 24 hours helpline that will be introduced in April.

“These principles are important because up until recently there were no guidelines, there was no protocol for someone that had been sexually harassed in the entertainment industry and I know this to be a fact because I’ve asked for principles, I’ve asked to see guidelines and no one could give them to me,” said actress Emma Watson. The guidelines initiative is supported by others in addition to Emma Watson, including Jodie Whittaker, Gemma Arterton, Gemma Chan and producer Barbara Broccoli all of which have been consulted throughout the development of this plan.

Watch Emma Watson interview here.

BAFTA Tea Party, Los Angeles, USA - 06 Jan 2018

Producer Barbara Broccoli said “Our industry is full of hugely talent individuals and teams producing fantastic work, but it has become clear there is a dangerous and negative culture and behavior that has been tolerated for far too long which must be eradicated. This work is an important step in creating an industry in which we can be proud, is accessible to all and everyone working in it can feel safe.”

Specific guidelines and regulations on behavior especially concerning work relationships that have imbalance of power have been present in other working environments for some time now. Hopefully this initiative of the UK film industry will be followed by other industries where harassment and bullying are still rampant and where people’s careers and lives are still hostage of few individuals who misuse their power.





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Fandoms Against Bullying: the story of our follower Laura

Fandoms Against Bullying: the story of our follower Laura 

IMG_0791February 10th, 2018: I grew up in a small town on the outskirts of a large city. One of those towns where everybody knows everybody and your classmates are the same from kindergarten to high school. I have always been very tall and very skinny, much taller than everybody else, big brown eyes in a tall body that felt so foreign so many times. I was shy, not too talkative but very independent, wanted to learn how to do things by myself as soon as there was a chance. Probably my mother was the instigator of this. She was a working mom and she had little time so she taught us independence and self-sufficiency very soon.

I don’t know where this came from as I wasn’t exposed to this growing up, but I adored math, physics and science and I was really good in school without trying. I’d look at a math problem and solve it just looking at it. One of those kids that are called nerds. A tall, skinny nerd. I felt awkward and like I didn’t belong most of the times. I surely wasn’t part of the cool girls club and I wasn’t someone the boys would be interested in.

Back then the word bullying wasn’t too popular, but bullying existed. No matter the grade I was in, there was always a small group of kids that did the bullying. I was often the target. I remember vividly an instance in which the whole class laughed at me for what I was wearing. But most of the other times the bullying was about how well I did in school. In retrospect, it was probably jealousy but back then I didn’t know. I never talked about it and simply grew up and tried to adjust, as other classmates that were also target of bullying did.

As I got older and started to recognize the signs of bullying and how they may have affected me, I had two choices: try to change myself to conform to what a “cool” kid should look or act like, or embrace who I was and develop that so I could build on my strengths. I chose the second, probably because it was the only thing I knew how.

My self esteem had been impacted by what I had experienced in school, but somehow I had the instinct that I could work on it by setting goals for myself and challenging myself to learn new things. It wasn’t a conscious decision, somehow that instinct was in me. Perhaps again my mom takes the credit for this. As the years went by I threw myself into new challenges, committed myself 100% to them and achieved goals. These weren’t big goals, just small ones. For example, at one point I decided that I was going to become a better swimmer and took swimming lessons. Water isn’t too comfortable for me still to this day, but I did become a better swimmer. Through the years I learned that I can do things that I set my mind to and that I can trust myself.

I am an adult now and I have a job I love, a job I am good at and that is rewarding. This job relies on my strengths, those character traits I was bullied for. Sometimes, it saddens me to think that some of the bullies in my school weren’t this lucky. I wish they could have used their energy in positivity instead of bullying their classmates. I am glad that bullying is more recognized now and that schools are doing something about it. No child should live through that and children’s uniqueness should be valued and cultivated, so all of us can reach our potential.





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Article: Bullied 8 yo says that she wants to die

Article: Bullied 8 yo says that she wants to die

February 10th, 2018: The International Business Time reports yet again a story of bullying in a school this time targeting 8 years old Millie from Tuebrook, Liverpool, UK. Millie’s mother Naomi O’Neill found a handwritten note on Millie’s bed that said “I am sad because I think it is not fair, because they just keep on bullying me and the way it makes me feel. Not one kid in the world should feel the way I feel when I get bullied. It makes me sad, I feel different, weird, not important, angry, dumb and hurt. There is a lot more but I don’t want to write it.” On the other side the note said, “Please help me stop getting bullied.”

Millie’s mom realized that the note had been written in a rush and not with the usual beautiful handwriting the girl has, suggesting that Millie was panicking when she wrote it. Naomi sat Millie down and asked her to explain what was wrong. The girl finally opened up to her mom telling her that she had been bullied in school and that she wanted to die. Naomi recalled that Millie indeed had had a change of behavior, refusing to eat and not wanting to go to school, to the point that she even tried to harm herself in an attempt to skip school.


Millie’s mom talked to the school officials who told her that they were completely unaware of bullying in school targeting Millie, that they were shocked about the note and only knew of a couple of small incidents that were resolved amicably. While the school assured Millie’s mom that they take bullying very seriously, Naomi has decided to pull Millie from this school and enroll her in a new school.

Bullying in school has become an epidemic. According to the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children [NSPCC], there were over 24,000 childline counseling sessions about bullying in 2016/17 and more than 16,000 children were absent from school due to bullying. Several organizations have launched campaigns to tackle the problem of bullying. For example a recent campaign is called “Stop Speak and Support” and it was launched by Heads Together a campaign started by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and by Prince Harry to end the stigma attached to mental health. As the problem of bullying is brought into light and organizations dedicate resources and effort in tackling bullying, hopefully in a not too distant future children like Millie will no longer have to endure what she experienced.

Picture credit to The International Business Time.

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Article: Lottie Tomlinson, Gemma Styles and Lou Teasdale support #labelsareforclothes

Article: Lottie Tomlinson, Gemma Styles and Lou Teasdale support #labelsareforclothes

February 4th, 2018: Louis Tomlinson’s sister Lottie, Harry Styels’ sister Gemma, and One Direction’s hairstylist Lou Teasdale showed support on social media for the campaign #labelsareforclothes. This campaign was launched today on social media by the British clothing line River Island.


River Island has partnered with the anti bullying charity Ditch the Label to campaign for inclusivity. With the hashtag #labelsareforclothes the message that we are all unique and one of a kind will be spread on social media. River Island has designed a special set of t-shirts and hoodies for this campaign. For every one of these items purchased, the clothing line will donate £3 to Ditch the Label. If a picture is taken and posted on social media with the hashtag and @DitchtheLabel, another £1 will be added to the donation.


Ditch the Label is a charity that wants to tackle discrimination and prejudice in the world from the way we view our bodies to the way people are discriminated against based on their sexual orientation, race or religion. Ditch the Label works in the belief that nobody should experience bullying and that bullies need education and emotional support, and not punishment. The charity wants to reach this goal using a multidisciplinary approach: 1) by providing innovative and comprehensive emotional, psychological and physical support to individuals that suffer on and off line bullying. The charity aims at involving also parents and educators in their approach. 2) by producing pioneering research to evaluate and predict changes in the landscaping of bullying so that victims of bullying can be helped in the best way possible. 3) by collaborating with other organizations to provide the best support to victims of bullying and to ignite positive change.


Ditch the Label has been working on several different campaigns to spread its message of inclusivity including “equal love” and “the body confidence revolution” among others. In “equal love” the beauty of love found in different types of relationships is explored.  As part of this campaign a video was uploaded on their website in which the lives of 3 couples, one straight, one gay and one lesbian are followed. The “body confidence revolution” explores our relationship with our body and the idea that the way we view our body  is heavily influenced by the media.

The approach that Ditch the Label has been using is very personalized and stemming from real interactions with individuals who have been targets of bullying and discrimination. Indeed a link on their site named “I need help” let’s you ask anything. At this link Ditch the Label reports that 23,738 questions have been answered so far.

You can help support Ditch the Label’s work either by donating directly to this charity or by purchasing their merchandise. You can also fundraise for them, become a mentor or an ambassador. Now you can also help by purchasing one of the t-shirts and hoodies sold by River Island. If you want to help Ditch the Label start here.

Most pictures are shared from Ditch the Label website. 



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Article: Harry Styles joins tribute to Fleetwood Mac for MusiCares Benefit

Article: Harry Styles joins tribute to Fleetwood Mac for MusiCares Benefit

imageJanuary 26, 2018: Harry Styles joined Lorde, Haim, OneRepublic, and other artists influenced by Fleetwood Mac to give a special performance as tribute honoring the band as recipients of MusiCares 2018 Person of the Year. Held in New York at Radio City Music Hall this was the first time that a band was honored for the prestigious award. Some past recipients have included Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney, Bonnie Raitt, Neil Young and Tom Petty yet for the first time Fleetwood Mac, the band, will be celebrated. MusiCares chose Fleetwood Mac to honor this year for their extraordinary creative accomplishments and their extensive charitable contributions.


When the selection was announced, Neil Portnow, president and CEO of the MusiCares Foundation and the Recording Academy, stated: “Our 2018 MusiCares‘s Person of the Year tribute is a celebration of firsts — the first time our annual signature gala will be held in New York City in 15 years, and the first time in the benefit’s history that we will honor a band. This excitement is only matched by the genuine thrill and privilege of paying tribute to Fleetwood Mac, a legendary and influential group of artists whose music has provided the soundtrack for music lovers around the world.”

Many artists, like Harry, have mentioned Fleetwood Mac’s impact on their musical career. Harry performed a cover of Fleetwood’s hit single “the Chain” from their Rumors album on his past world tour.

imageIndeed, as Harry was launching his solo career at the Troubadour in May of last year, he welcomed Stevie Nicks to his stage for a rare performance.




Mick Fleetwood wrote a statement about the band’s reception of the award (members include Mick Fleetwood, Stevie Nicks, Lindsay Buckingham, Bobby and Christine McVey): “It’s a tremendous honor to be the first band to receive the MusiCares Person of the Year award. Independently and together, we all set off on a journey to spend our lives as artists, songwriters and musicians. None of us did it alone and there were plenty of helping hands along the way, so we applaud and celebrate MusiCares’ guiding principles of giving musicians a helping hand and a place to turn in times of need.”

This is the 28th year that the annual Person of the Year tribute celebration will be providing essential support for MusiCares, which ensures musicians have a place to turn in times of financial, medical, and personal need.

Earlier this week Harry also auctioned off a signed Gibson guitar on eBay to benefit this charity with bids starting at $5,000. You can view the auction and place your bid at this link.


At the concert last night, Harry performed with Fleetwood Mac “the Chain” the only single from the 1977 album Rumors that is credited to all the band members, which Harry has covered during his own tour as well, as stated above. In introducing Fleetwood Mac Harry stated: “Ladies and gentlemen, there are several things that I thought I would never be doing in my life: 1. is sharing a stage with these legends. I am one of the babies that Stevie was talking about earlier.” 

Below are some of the pictures taken by the audience at the MusiCares concert honoring Fleetwood Mac last night.

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Article: Liam Payne supports a fundraiser to help 18 yo with a rare condition

Article: Liam Payne supports a fundraiser to help 18 yo with a rare condition

January 20th, 2018: Yesterday Liam Payne tweeted in support of a fundraising campaign set up to help 18 years old Moin Younis who suffers from a rare skin condition called Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB).   EB is a group of genetic disorders characterized by very fragile skin that tears and blisters in response to minor injury, scratching, rubbing, and sometimes even heat. In the most severe cases blisters can appear in the mouth and stomach as well. Moin is affected by one of the most severe cases of EB and most of his body is covered in blisters and wounds.

One of the major challenges of EB is preventing infections. To prevent infections the wounds and the blisters have to be medicated and covered with bandages that have to be changed every single day. Moin’s mom is his main care taker and it takes her approximately 5 hours each day to care for his wounds and change his bandages.

Moin has been under the care of the Acorns Children’s Hospice in Birmingham since he was 3 months old. He later became an ambassador for this hospice as he started advising nurses and doctors at the hospice on how to improve the care for children with the most severe conditions. Liam Payne met Moin at the Pride of Britain Awards in November of 2017 where Moin was awarded the Teen of Courage award for his work with Acorns Children’s Hospice and for his inspiring positive attitude. The Pride of Britain awards honor unrecognized individuals of all ages who do exceptional and remarkable things to help others.


The Justgiving campaign Liam tweeted about intends to raise 250,000 pounds to fund a new experimental treatment for Moin that has shown positive results on other EB patients. This new treatment consists in a full body graft of genetically modified stem cells that will regenerate Moin’s skin. The treatment is not a cure but if successful is bound to greatly improve Moin’s quality of life by lowering his pain and allowing him more mobility and freedom to do every day activities that we so often take for granted.

You can also access the Justgiving campaign from Moin’s website here.


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Article: Louis Tomlinson donates $10,000 to Rylee Sanford’s fundraiser

Article: Louis Tomlinson donates $10,000 to Rylee Sanford’s fundraiser

January 15th, 2018: Today MaKayley Sanford from Georgia shared on her twitter account that Louis Tomlinson donated $10,000 to a fundraiser set up by her family on YouCaring. The fundraiser was established to raise funds for MaKayley’s sister Rylee who suffers from cerebral palsy and needs her home adapted to her special needs.

rylee1Rylee, who is 9 years old, was born with a very rare form of brain malformation called bilateral closed-lipped schizencephaly. This brain malformation causes a number of serious symptoms including developmental delays, including delays in learning speech and language skills. It can also cause problems with movement, poor muscle tone, accumulation of fluid in the brain, seizures and also paralysis. On the fundraising page MaKayley explains that Rylee can only say a few words and cannot walk without assistance.

Rylee’s home needs to be adapted to her special needs so that her family can care for her and give her the best life possible for her condition. In particular they are seeking to install a walk-in shower, widen doorways and add a ramp to their porch. They had estimated that $10,000 should cover the cost of these modifications. By donating $10,000 Louis basically will be covering the entire cost of the work needed to adapt the family home to Rylee’s needs. In fact, given that the goal has been now surpassed thanks to Louis’ donation, Rylee’s family can now work towards other goals including stem cell treatments which have shown great results for this type of condition.

Over the years Louis has donated to many causes dear to his heart and has used his visibility to raise awareness for causes ranging from childhood cancer to organizations that help seriously ill children and young adults. Louis has done much of this work with his mom Johannah before her passing in December of 2016. Joannah had indeed said at one point that the publicized charity is only a fraction of the charity that Louis does quietly behind the scenes.

If you want to contribute to Rylee’s fundraiser you can visit her site here.

Pictures are shared from Rylee’s fundraiser page.

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