People on Twitter are revealing the first time they saw 'themselves' on screen.

Lieutenant Uhura in "Star Trek." Tia and Tamera from "Sister, Sister." Susie Carmichael on "The Rugrats."

Twitter users are chiming in with stories of the first time they felt represented by a character on-screen, using the hashtag #FirstTimeISawMe

The trending hashtag is part of a multimedia campaign launched by Netflix to promote its "diverse, layered and intersectional content," including Marvel's "Luke Cage" and "Dear White People."


Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images.

"Seeing someone that looks like you and deals with similar things that you have to deal with is powerful because you inevitably feel like you can conquer your issues once you see someone else on-screen do it first," Netflix spokesperson Myles Worthington writes in an email.

Many who posted to the hashtag noted the powerful impact that certain iconic characters — from princesses to Power Rangers — had on them as young children.

Characters like Static Shock, with fully fleshed out personalities, interests, and skills — particularly nerdy ones — received lots of praise.

Others, like Sulu from "Star Trek," even helped some Twitter users figure out what they wanted to do later in life.

Some pointed out that they're still waiting to see themselves fully represented.

With the ratings success of programming like FOX's "Empire" and ABC's Shonda Rhimes universe, both the small and large screen have diversified in recent years, though some would like to see the process speed up.

"I think it’s still slow going, but it’s getting better — depending on what you watch," Constance Gibbs of Black Girl Nerds, who collaborated on a video for the campaign, wrote in a blog post. "If you watch Netflix or ABC or even somewhat the CW, you may see someone who looks like you (but maybe not as a lead character). But if you watch a network like CBS, you probably won’t — no matter who you are."

CBS recently found itself mired in twin controversies after announcing a fall season with no female-helmed shows and after two Asian-American actors left long-running "Hawaii Five-O," citing pay discrepancies with their white cast-mates.

Gibbs noted, approvingly, that networks have featured more fully characterized dark-skinned black women on screen in recent years, in shows such as Netflix's "Chewing Gum" and ABC's "Still Star-Crossed" and hopes the networks continue to spread the opportunity around.

"There are many who are still waiting for that first burst of authentic representation," she writes over email.

Netflix hopes the campaign will emphasize its commitment to this growing trend.

"We don’t have advertisers to think of, or specific time slots to consider, or a cap on the amount of shows we can create," Worthington says. "If we uncover a unique story that we think our members will enjoy, we can bring it to life."

Uncover enough of them, and perhaps today's kids won't have to start an appreciative hashtag on the social network of tomorrow.

Though we're always here for more Power Rangers GIFs.

When "bobcat" trended on Twitter this week, no one anticipated the unreal series of events they were about to witness. The bizarre bobcat encounter was captured on a security cam video and...well...you just have to see it. (Read the following description if you want to be prepared, or skip down to the video if you want to be surprised. I promise, it's a wild ride either way.)

In a North Carolina neighborhood that looks like a present-day Pleasantville, a man carries a cup of coffee and a plate of brownies out to his car. "Good mornin!" he calls cheerfully to a neighbor jogging by. As he sets his coffee cup on the hood of the car, he says, "I need to wash my car." Well, shucks. His wife enters the camera frame on the other side of the car.

So far, it's just about the most classic modern Americana scene imaginable. And then...

A horrifying "rrrrawwwww!" Blood-curdling screaming. Running. Panic. The man abandons the brownies, races to his wife's side of the car, then emerges with an animal in his hands. He holds the creature up like Rafiki holding up Simba, then yells in its face, "Oh my god! It's a bobcat! Oh my god!"

Then he hucks the bobcat across the yard with all his might.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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