Over the Influence: Why Social Media is Toxic for Women and Girls - And How We Can Take it Back (Hardcover)

Over the Influence: Why Social Media is Toxic for Women and Girls - And How We Can Take it Back By Kara Alaimo Cover Image

Over the Influence: Why Social Media is Toxic for Women and Girls - And How We Can Take it Back (Hardcover)


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This essential book is a rallying cry for women to recognize and reject the ways social media is being weaponized against us — and instead wield it to empower ourselves.

In Over the Influence, communication professor and CNN Opinion contributor Kara Alaimo reveals how social media is affecting every aspect of the lives of women and girls—from our relationships and our parenting to our physical and mental well-being. Over the Influence is a book about what it means to live in the world social media has wrought—whether you’re constantly connected or have deleted your accounts forever. Alaimo shows why you’re likely to get fewer followers if you’re a woman. She explains how fake news is crafted to prey on women’s vulnerabilities. She reveals why so much of the content we find in our feeds is specifically designed to hold us back. And she explains how social media has made the offline world an uglier place for women.

But we can change this. Alaimo offers up brilliant advice for how to get over the influence—how to handle our daughters’ use of social media, use dating apps to find the partners we’re looking for, use social networks to bolster our careers, and protect ourselves from sextortionists, catfishers, and trolls. She also explains what we need to demand from lawmakers and tech companies.

Over the Influence calls on women to recognize and call out the subtle (and not-so-subtle) sexism and misogyny we find online, reject misinformation that is targeted to us because of our gender, and use our platforms to empower ourselves and other women.
Kara Alaimo, Ph.D. is a communication professor at Fairleigh Dickinson University. She writes frequently for CNN Opinion about the social impact of social media and issues affecting women. A former communicator at the United Nations and in the Obama administration, she lives in New Jersey with her family. For more information, visit www.karaalaimo.com and follow her @karaalaimo.
Product Details ISBN: 9781639106684
ISBN-10: 1639106685
Publisher: Alcove Press
Publication Date: March 5th, 2024
Pages: 336
Language: English
Praise for Over the Influence:
“An impassioned denunciation of the damage being done online to women and girls.”
Publishers Weekly

“Extensive research and input from experts provide a thought-provoking journey through just about every aspect of the social media landscape.”
Booklist Reviews

“A powerful and timely exploration of the pervasive toxicity of social media, offering important insights into its impact on relationships, well-being, and body image . . . A rallying cry to empower and guide women towards reclaiming the Internet and advocating for a dramatic and overdue change in the digital landscape.”
—Rana Awdish, MD, bestselling author of In Shock, My Journey from Death to Recovery and the Redemptive Power of Hope

“A clarion call for thoughtfulness and action on a vital issue facing girls and women . . . a captivating must-read for anyone who cares about misogyny, the internet, and the confluence between them. It is also indispensable, impeccably researched, and eye-opening reading for any parent navigating social media with their children—which is to say, all of us.”
—Kate Manne, author of Entitled: How Male Privilege Hurts Women and Down Girl: The Logic of Misogyny

“A searing indictment of the capitalist, racist, and misogynistic overtones of social media, [Over the Influence] calls on us to demand more from these platforms and to create new norms for ourselves and generations to come in relation to building and sustaining community and creating change—online and off.”
—Senti Sojwal, cofounder of the Asian American Feminist Collective

“Social media promised us a better, more connected, more empathetic world. Instead, it’s brought insecurity, humiliation, sexualization, and sometimes even violence—at least to women and girls. That’s the case Kara Alaimo makes in her important book, which everyone who has ever downloaded a social media app, or who cares about the future of society, should read.”
—Jill Filipovic, author of The H-Spot: The Feminist Pursuit of Happiness

“The ultimate guide for any mom seeking to help her daughters—and herself—more safely navigate an internet that is stacked against women. I’ll be recommending it to all the parents in my life.”
—Nina Jankowicz, author of How to Be a Woman Online: Surviving Abuse and Harassment, and How to Fight Back

“Every parent: read this book to know what you’re up against. Grab copies for your daughters and friends. Together, armed with Kara’s powerful reporting, we can reverse today’s digital backlash against women and create a narrative that serves us.”
—Donna Jackson Nakazawa, author of Girls on the Brink

“Both showcases the dangerous realities and consequences of the modern cyber world and also silverlines it with what a humane social media culture could look like . . . A protest against today’s online reality and a call to arms for what tomorrow’s ought to look like.”
—Carrie Goldberg, Leading victims’ rights attorney and author of Nobody’s Victim: Fighting Psychos, Stalkers, Pervs, and Trolls

“An essential guide for anyone who uses the internet and cares about other people—so, everyone!”
—Renee Bracey Sherman, founder and co-executive director of We Testify