We all remember the many sexually suggestive status updates of female Facebook users during the breast cancer awareness month of October. They were posting things like “I like it on the floor,” “I like it on the couch” or “I like it in the closet.” For those of you who thought being promiscuous was the new online trend, these women were in fact trying to raise awareness for breast cancer by saying where they liked to put their handbags or purses.
This method was definitely eye-catching, but its efficacy is questionable. Did it raise anything other than eyebrows? I doubt it. November is prostate cancer awareness month and it has to be said that men, over 24,000 of whom will be diagnosed with the disease this year alone, are doing a much better job at raising awareness for their cause than the opposite sex.
In this battle of the sexes of causes, the Movember campaign easily wins against the women’s silly “I like it on” campaign. During Movember, a clever combination of mustache and November, men grow mustaches and raise awareness and money for prostate cancer research.
Last year’s unofficial breast cancer campaign saw female Facebook users update their status with the colour of the bra they were wearing at the time. Many are questioning the effectiveness of social networks as a means of viral marketing. MJ Decoteau, the executive director of Rethink Breast Cancer, told the Toronto Star: “The bra I kind of got – it’s connected to boobs – but I don’t understand the purse.”
Last year’s Movember campaign involved over 35,000 men and women (yes, women, too) and raised $7.8 million for Prostate Cancer Canada.
Besides raising your friends’ eyebrows and making them believe you are way, way oversharing, updating your Facebook status to “I like it on the floor” does absolutely nothing. That campaign also excluded a large segment of the population, including children, men, and older individuals. By being an exclusively Facebook-oriented campaign, the participants were limited in scope and variety and kept many in the dark. Movember has found an effective way to unite everyone for a cause by encouraging all to take action and donate money to the prostate cancer association via the Movember website.
People use these websites as a form of expression. This year, it has been demonstrated by men and other supporters of Movember who have found an active approach to help raise consciousness about prostate cancer. They have managed to attract people’s attention, without sounding sordid, by either posting pictures of themselves with their growing moustache, or simply by posting informative facts about prostate cancer.
Everyone is encouraged to donate, take action and get educated instead of chuckling at how kooky and coincidental it is that women like their handbags in places they could also like to get down.
Men are a lot less likely to seek medical help or go for routine checkups than women. Whether it’s due to their pride or macho attitude, it’s in everyone’s interest to encourage all the men in their life to get their prostate checked, because every man is someone’s son, father, brother, husband or friend. People have to take more action and become proactive. Actions speak louder than words.