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VIDEO: Monica Lewinsky Stages Anti-Cyberbullying PSA in Williamsburg

By Gwynne Hogan | October 9, 2017 4:59pm
 The PSA features Whoops Bakery and other Williamsburg locations.
The PSA features Whoops Bakery and other Williamsburg locations.
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YouTube/In Real Life

BROOKLYN — Monica Lewinsky is using emojis to fight internet trolls in Williamsburg.

The former White House intern, who has been the frequent target of cyber scorn, launched a new collection of anti-bullying emojis along with a public service announcement that prominently features well-known Williamsburg locales like the Bedford Avenue L train stop and McCarren Park.

The video PSA, released Monday, imagines what cyber-bullying would look like in real life, with strangers bombarding a gay couple with homophobic comments while they enjoy a coffee at Whoops Bakery on Driggs Avenue and haranguing a Muslim woman as she walks through McCarren Park.

Eventually, bystanders who didn't know the encounters were staged step up and defend the people being trolled.

“This campaign is a wakeup call to remind people that our instincts for empathy and caring are still strong," said Lewinsky, who has turned into staunch anti-cyberbullying advocate following the flood of online bullying she experienced following her scandalous affair with former President Bill Clinton.

"We just need to consciously extend that thinking online," she said.

Whoops Bakeshop manager Leidy Gutierrez, 33, gladly let the film crew use the shop for the shoot once she learned of the PSA's mission.

"Bullying has to stop," said Gutierrez, a mother of 9-year-old twins, who wants to protect her kids from intimidation and harassment.

"I don't want that to happen to my little ones," she said, recounting how a childhood friend from her native Colombia committed suicide after enduring years of bullying for being gay.

"People need to hear more about this."

The "#BeStrong" anti-bullying emojis, which available in the App Store, feature different colored hands shaking, as well as motivational phrases like "Got Your Back," "On Your Side" and "Blocking is Beautiful."