Why CODEGIRL deserves more coverage than Essena O’Neill

Essena O’Neill is an 18 year old Australian “model” who has spent the last few years making top dollar on Instagram. She has more than half a million followers and was obviously paid to promote brands, model in clothes and the like. This week she “quit” social media in a huff announcing it was fake and “not real”. In a mini melt down she proceeded to edit most of the captions on her photos giving the real story…. and conveniently punting her new blog (anyone else notice that?). I’d love to share her rants (which also conveniently mention how she is happy to promote certain products that fit her life… so she isn’t really quitting), but they seem to have been removed now.

@KateLavie said it best on Twitter:

There wouldn’t be a need to quit social media if you were honest and real in the first place.


While the news is all over this fuss I really wish they’d spent more time giving coverage to CODEGIRL. I only found out about this awesome documentary yesterday and I’ve already watched an hour (I plan to get the rest in tonight). It really is the most incredibly shot documentary.

Susan Woicicki, the CEO of YouTube, actually summarised the documentary really well (I stole this summary from TechCrunch – thanks guys):

“CODEGIRL” follows the story of 5,000 girls from 60 countries as they compete in a global entrepreneurship and coding competition by Technovation. The girls have three months to develop an app that attempts to solve a problem in their local community. In the film, they size up their competition, interact with teachers and local mentors, learn to code, and pitch their ideas all in hopes of winning $10,000 in funding and support.

Surprised women looking at laptop, canon 1Ds mark III

Here’s why CODEGIRL is rad – for starters you can watch it, FOR FREE, on YOUTUBE, until the 5th of November. How incredible? The YouTube viewing is courtesy of Google and Made With Code. The documentary was shot by Lesley Chilcott (she has done An Inconvenient Truth). It is beautiful to watch. I wish more news outlets were encouraging people to go and watch the film, rather than bleating on about Essena O’Neill.




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