Valentina Schulz is 12 years old and a contestant on the Brazilian version of Masterchef Junior.
During the season premiere of the show on Oct. 20, Twitter users began tweeting about Schulz in a suggestive way. This tweet by the now deactivated @AnderSoberano seems to have been what started it.
In reaction to the sexualization of a 12-year-old, people began using the hashtag #PrimeiroAssedio ("first harassment") to speak out about the first time they were sexually harassed.
Since the incident the show's host network, Bandeirantes, has issued a statement apologizing for the reaction to the young contestant.
Speaking to BBC Trending, Juliana De Faria of feminist group Think Olga, which started the hashtag, said she had received an overwhelming number of stories about young girls being targeted by sexual harassment.
"Suddenly some readers and followers of Think Olga were writing me back with the first time they were harassed and they were very, very young, as young as five years old. So I started retweeting that."
Rachael Krishna is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.
Contact Rachael Krishna at email@example.com.
Clarissa Passos é sub-editora do BuzzFeed, em São Paulo
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