What is '97 percent' on TikTok? The viral trend explained

18 March 2021, 13:16

What does 97% on TikTok mean?
What does 97% on TikTok mean? Picture: Chesnot/Getty Images, @theofficialnoddy via TikTok

A recent UK survey about sexual harassment has inspired a new TikTok trend.

If you've been on TikTok recently, you may have come across a few videos referring to being 'part of the 97%' or people sharing videos with the #97percent hashtag. Here's what that means.

In March 2021, an investigation by UN Women UK revealed that 97% of women in the UK, aged 18 to 24, had experienced sexual harassment in a public place. The study also revealed that more than 70% of women of all ages have also had similar experiences.

The disturbing percentage has now made its way on to TikTok where users all over the world are sharing their own stories and experiences with sexual harassment. The #97percent hashtag and the '97% trend' have both gone viral on the platform, with over 21 million views.

What does #97percent mean on TikTok?

As well as a reaction to the results of the study, the 97% trend is also a reaction to the tragic murder of 33-year-old Sarah Everard.

On March 3rd, Sarah Everard disappeared while walking home from a friend's house in Clapham, London. Her body was found a week later in a woodland area in Kent. A Met police officer has been arrested and charged with her kidnapping and murder.

Following Sarah's death, women from the UK and all over the world have been bravely opening up and sharing their experiences of sexual harassment, sexual assault and feeling unsafe in public, particularly around men.

Starting on Twitter and Instagram, the social media reaction then spilled over to TikTok. Some have been sharing images of what they were wearing when they were harassed or assaulted and the ways in which they've been catcalled. (Some of the videos using the hashtag might be distressing or triggering for some viewers.)

Some have also responded with criticism to the "Not All Men" hashtag that emerged on Twitter.

If you need help or want to talk to someone, you can visit RapeCrisis.org or call their National Telephone Helpline at 0808 802 9999. If you're in the US, you can visit RAINN.org or call The National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673.