The recent rise in misogynistic content online has sent society backwards in their treatment of women, according to a new study.

A professor from Oxford University, Deborah Cameron, has said "The return of overt misogyny is visible both in politics and in popular culture".

She added: “Though the misogyny of the 21st century is politically backward-looking, its style and mode of expression belong to the present.”

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Despite there being an increase on the number of laws on women's rights, women are still prone to online abuse such as rape threats, which can deter them from taking on public positions in society.

This recent research has suggested that prejudice, discrimination and abuse should not be regarded as yesterday's problems as they have now evolved in ways which reflect the conditions of the present day, making it an ongoing, unresolved problem.

Similar content can be seen in Prof Cameron's book, Language, Sexism and Misogyny, which analyses the way sexism and misogyny are expressed and enacted in today's advertising and media.

It highlights the trending issues of views from Andrew Tate and Donald Trump, and assesses the rise of concepts such as ‘tradwife' (traditional wife) and the ‘manosphere’ (websites and blogs where men express opinions on fragile masculinity but also express hostile views on feminism and women’s rights).

The book, which has been published by Taylor & Francis Group, also discusses how social media platforms such as TikTok have allowed a space for promotion of misogynistic ideas which has caused a rise in online threats and abuse against women.

thisisoxfordshire: Professor Deborah Cameron's new bookProfessor Deborah Cameron's new book (Image: Contributed)

Due to the recent rise of online threats against women, it is believed that such hostility may be causing women to step down from important roles.

Such as political roles, which are enhanced by other potential factors such as being granted less time to speak than men.

The Oxford professor said: “Survey’s consistently find that most women who use the internet have some experience of online abuse, just as most have some experience of being harassed offline, on the street or on public transport.”

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In order to combat the growing presence misogyny against women online, Prof Cameron does believe that women have begun to use language to fight back.

This is by inventing new terms, "reclaiming" old slurs and campaigning for changes in media reporting, dictionary entries or the language used in job advertisements.

Prof Cameron said: “Sexist and misogynist language is everywhere. It’s insidious, and in an age when we’re often told it’s no longer a problem, the forms it takes can be subtle.

"To fight it, we need to be able to see it and understand how it works, and that’s really what this book is for.”

Opinion: Are social media applications giving a platform to the increasing rise of misogyny?

Whilst the internet, and social media apps such as Instagram and TikTok are deemed as platforms that give way to free speech and freedom of expression, is there enough being done to tackle the rising misogynistic attitudes and language targeting women online?

One aspect that cannot be denied, is that it is easier to express prejudices that exhibit hate when using online platforms because such users can remain faceless, anonymise their profiles and easily delete comments as and when they choose to.

Because these interactions are not in-person, this almost gives them a kind of freedom to convey misogynistic prejudices, and the worst consequence they could face would be to receive a three-strike warning or have their account banned for a limited amount of time.

Rather than doing more to prevent the presence of misogynistic comments and messages, apps such as TikTok run on an algorithm, which is a recommending system that works from the moment you like a post or like a comment, most instantly more content relating to the themes of the post or comment will appear as it will try and cater your personalised interests.

thisisoxfordshire: TikTok (Yui Mok/PA)So rather than lessening misogynist content and online opinions, the algorithm will just increase the search for it, which will make more room and give misogynistic content the platform it runs on.

It is safe to say that more needs to be done as many women online are prone to posting videos of themselves often being harassed, often by men, when they are going about their daily routine.

This is often to raise awareness that such incidents still happen, and it often gives meaning to the statistic that was released by U.N Women March 2021 where it was said that 97 per cent of women in the UK aged between 18-24 have experienced sexual harassment in public spaces.

Rather than abandoning these social media apps entirely, there needs to be a more productive solution, so misogynist behaviours are no longer encouraged to the point where they can be freely expressed on online platforms without consequences.

Tackling the problem offline would be a significantly effective starting point.