The Brief: Women, including many celebrities, have been nominating each other to share black and white photos along with the hashtags #ChallengeAccepted and #WomenSupportingWomen on Instagram to show solidarity with fellow women.

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The #WomenSupportingWomen challenge on Instagram invites women to post a black and white selfie on Instagram along with the caption “Challenge Accepted” or #ChallengeAccepted. The purpose of this social media challenge is to encourage women to show support for the women in their lives.

Many women, including celebrities, have participated in this challenge, nominating their friends to join via DM. These messages typically ask women to “take care of each other” and showcase how “we are beautiful the way we are.” They ask people to nominate 50 other women they know and to tag them in the post, reminding them that they are “beautiful, strong and incredible.”

The origin of this challenge is not currently known, but some sources have connected it to a similar campaign from 2016 for cancer awareness. Others have speculated that this challenge may be a nod to Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez’s recent speech in response to a sexist verbal attack from Congressman Ted Yoho in which she spoke out against sexism, saying “I am here because I have to show my parents that I am their daughter, and that they did not raise me to accept abuse from men.”

Most posts related to the Women Supporting Women challenge and the hashtag #ChallengeAccepted on Instagram aren’t related to a specific political action, but are a way of celebrating friendships between women and the strength and beauty they carry. Although not all posts are directly associated with this challenge, the hashtags #ChallengeAccepted and #WomenSupportingWomen have been used in over 9.5 million Instagram posts.

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women supporting women 🖤🤍#challengeaccepted

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