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Slut-Shaming, Victim 
Blaming, and Harassment 
on Social Media 
25th Anniversary | Montreal Polytechnique Massacre 
Decemb...
Trigger Warning 
The following presentation discusses sexual assault and rape, 
victimization, and violence against women ...
Who are we? 
@TesniEllis @BaileyParnell
What is all this stuff? 
Slut-Shaming 
The act of making a person, especially 
women and trans folks, feel guilty or 
infe...
Slut-Shaming
What is all this stuff? 
Victim-Blaming 
Victim blaming is a devaluing act 
where the victim of a crime, an 
accident, or ...
Victim-Blaming
What is all this stuff? 
(Online) Harassment 
Harassment is a form of discrimination. It involves any unwanted 
physical o...
Online Harassment
How common is this?
How common is this?
How common is this?
How common is this? 
93.1% CONVERSATIONAL (actual conversational 
usage) 
6.9% COMMENT (commenting on usage of these words...
How common is this? 
MOST HOSTILITY 
➔ Female journalists 
➔ Male celebrities 
➔ Male politicians 
BUT... 
➔ Women are tar...
Why does it matter? 
Rape culture affects all of us 
We’re all on social media 
It reflects broader societal behaviours an...
Social Media
Social Media
Social Media 
OPPORTUNITY OPPRESSION
Social Media 
SYMPTOM DISEASE
Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming 
Real world impacts: 
the online and offline 
are connected 
“She asked 
for it.” 
“She shou...
Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming
Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming 
Real world impacts: 
the online and offline 
are connected 
“She asked 
for it.” 
“She shou...
Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming 
Slut shaming has been going on for 
centuries but now there’s a new tool 
– instead of sham...
Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming 
Steubenville, Ohio Rehtaeh Parsons Amanda Todd
Online Harassment 
Women are being driven out; they’re being driven offline. This isn’t just in 
gaming. This is happening...
Online Harassment 
Online harassment, especially gendered 
online harassment, is an epidemic. 
Anita Sarkeesian
Online Harassment: Cyber Misogyny 
Women have long been controlled through violence and 
some people derive benefits from ...
Why Social Media? 
Reach 
Immediacy 
Anonymity 
Slow response from networks 
Sparks offline campaigns
Social Media
Using Social Media to Combat 
#FBRape #YesAllWomen 
Everyday 
Sexism Project 
#BeenRapedNeverReported 
Bye Felipe
#FBRape 
Targeting Facebook, 
using Twitter 
Next up: Twitter’s 
abuse reporting 
policies
Everyday Sexism Project
#YesAllWomen
Bye Felipe 
“This is just a 
symptom of a 
larger 
problem...Until we 
change the 
cultural 
atmosphere, 
women will 
cont...
#BeenRapedNeverReported 
“Because I had been drinking, and didn’t remember everything.” 
“Because even my ‘friends’ told m...
Current Campaigns to Follow
Where do we go from here? 
Not a social media problem, but a people problem 
Reproducing and reinforcing oppressive spaces...
Where do we go from here?
Questions?
Tweet Us! 
@TesniEllis @BaileyParnell
“The Unsafety Net: How Social Media Turned Against Women” by Catherine Buni and Soraya Chemaly 
http://www.theatlantic.com...
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Slut Shaming, Victim Blaming and Harassment on Social Media

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"Bailey Parnell & Tesni Ellis

Slut Shaming, Victim Blaming and Sexual Harassment on Social Media

This session will discuss the forms of violence against women, and projects that seek to combat such violence that take place in the online world. The talk will discuss rape culture and the forms of harassment that women and youth experience online, from threatening trolls to discourses that blame victims of sexual assault to women in the gaming industry.

We will also look at feminist projects and trends that use social media to educate, rally and combat the harassment experienced both online and offline, including groups like SlutWalk, the Everyday Sexism Project and trends like #YesAllWomen and #BeenRapedNeverReported. Join us as we discuss rape culture’s presence on social media and contemplate methods to change the cultural consciousness.

With Bailey Parnell and Tesni Ellis, Ryerson Student Affairs Creative Unit.

ASL provided. If you require any other accommodations, please let us know."

Published in: Social Media
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Slut Shaming, Victim Blaming and Harassment on Social Media

  1. 1. Slut-Shaming, Victim Blaming, and Harassment on Social Media 25th Anniversary | Montreal Polytechnique Massacre December 6th | Canada’s National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women @BaileyParnell @TesniEllis
  2. 2. Trigger Warning The following presentation discusses sexual assault and rape, victimization, and violence against women in descriptive terms and images.
  3. 3. Who are we? @TesniEllis @BaileyParnell
  4. 4. What is all this stuff? Slut-Shaming The act of making a person, especially women and trans folks, feel guilty or inferior for their (perceived) sexual behaviours, circumstances or desires. Slut-shaming is a form of exercising social control over women and trans folks’ bodies and behaviours.
  5. 5. Slut-Shaming
  6. 6. What is all this stuff? Victim-Blaming Victim blaming is a devaluing act where the victim of a crime, an accident, or any type of abusive maltreatment is held as wholly or partially responsible for the wrongful conduct committed against them.
  7. 7. Victim-Blaming
  8. 8. What is all this stuff? (Online) Harassment Harassment is a form of discrimination. It involves any unwanted physical or verbal behaviour that offends or humiliates you. Generally, harassment is a behaviour that persists over time. Serious one-time incidents can also sometimes be considered harassment. Harassment occurs when someone: ● Makes unwelcome remarks or jokes about your race, religion, sex, age, disability or any other of the 11 grounds of discrimination. ● Threatens or intimidates you. ● Makes unwelcome physical contact with you, such as touching, patting, pinching or punching, which can also be considered assault.
  9. 9. Online Harassment
  10. 10. How common is this?
  11. 11. How common is this?
  12. 12. How common is this?
  13. 13. How common is this? 93.1% CONVERSATIONAL (actual conversational usage) 6.9% COMMENT (commenting on usage of these words)
  14. 14. How common is this? MOST HOSTILITY ➔ Female journalists ➔ Male celebrities ➔ Male politicians BUT... ➔ Women are targeted specifically because of their gender ➔ Men are overwhelmingly those doing the harassing DISPROPORTIONATELY TARGETED ➔ Women of colour ➔ Members of the LGBT community
  15. 15. Why does it matter? Rape culture affects all of us We’re all on social media It reflects broader societal behaviours and thoughts Creating and reproducing unsafe spaces You can be the change
  16. 16. Social Media
  17. 17. Social Media
  18. 18. Social Media OPPORTUNITY OPPRESSION
  19. 19. Social Media SYMPTOM DISEASE
  20. 20. Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming Real world impacts: the online and offline are connected “She asked for it.” “She should have said no.” Innocent until proven guilty? Privilege: class and race Reproducing oppression: controlling/limiting women’s bodies, choices, and behaviours
  21. 21. Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming
  22. 22. Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming Real world impacts: the online and offline are connected “She asked for it.” “She should have said no.” Innocent until proven guilty? Privilege: class and race Reproducing oppression: controlling/limiting women’s bodies, choices, and behaviours
  23. 23. Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming Slut shaming has been going on for centuries but now there’s a new tool – instead of shaming hussies in the town square there are thousands of Facebook and web pages literally called “exposing hos.” - 16 year old Temitayo Fagbenle
  24. 24. Slut Shaming & Victim Blaming Steubenville, Ohio Rehtaeh Parsons Amanda Todd
  25. 25. Online Harassment Women are being driven out; they’re being driven offline. This isn’t just in gaming. This is happening across the board online...So the harassment actually has a very real effect on us as a society, in terms of making this space unwelcoming for women. Anita Sarkeesian
  26. 26. Online Harassment Online harassment, especially gendered online harassment, is an epidemic. Anita Sarkeesian
  27. 27. Online Harassment: Cyber Misogyny Women have long been controlled through violence and some people derive benefits from that fact that they are loathe to give up. Bullies and abusers who thrive in our culture where many insist violence against girls and women - real or implied - isn't a big deal, that we're exaggerating and should stop complaining. Who does this approach serve? Bullies and abusers. The violent and gender-specific aspects of the online harassment and threats are qualitatively and quantitatively different from other common forms of trolling and abuse because they take place in a world where violence and rape are pervasive, real and epidemic.” - Soraya Chemaly
  28. 28. Why Social Media? Reach Immediacy Anonymity Slow response from networks Sparks offline campaigns
  29. 29. Social Media
  30. 30. Using Social Media to Combat #FBRape #YesAllWomen Everyday Sexism Project #BeenRapedNeverReported Bye Felipe
  31. 31. #FBRape Targeting Facebook, using Twitter Next up: Twitter’s abuse reporting policies
  32. 32. Everyday Sexism Project
  33. 33. #YesAllWomen
  34. 34. Bye Felipe “This is just a symptom of a larger problem...Until we change the cultural atmosphere, women will continue to receive these hurtful messages online and in real life.” - Bye Felipe’s creator
  35. 35. #BeenRapedNeverReported “Because I had been drinking, and didn’t remember everything.” “Because even my ‘friends’ told me I shouldn’t cause I would ruin HIS life.” “Didn’t know I could say because I was sixteen and he was my boyfriend.” “Because when you’re young and no one really believes you anyway.”
  36. 36. Current Campaigns to Follow
  37. 37. Where do we go from here? Not a social media problem, but a people problem Reproducing and reinforcing oppressive spaces that already exist offline Connects to the broader discussion of gender roles More guidelines and policies from social networks
  38. 38. Where do we go from here?
  39. 39. Questions?
  40. 40. Tweet Us! @TesniEllis @BaileyParnell
  41. 41. “The Unsafety Net: How Social Media Turned Against Women” by Catherine Buni and Soraya Chemaly http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2014/10/the-unsafety-net-how-social-media-turned-against-women/ 381261/ “Sorry, we haven’t reached a ‘watershed’ on violence against women” by Denise Balkissoon http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/sorry-we-havent-reached-a-watershed-on-violence-against-women/ article21452668/?utm_source=Shared+Article+Sent+to+User&utm_medium=E-mail:+ Newsletters+/+E-Blasts+/+etc.&utm_campaign=Shared+Web+Article+Links Demos Report: Misogyny on Twitter http://www.demos.co.uk/files/MISOGYNY_ON_TWITTER.pdf?1399567516 Cyber Bullying by Christopher Palmeri http://www.bloombergview.com/quicktake/cyberbullying “After arrest, let’s not forget lessons of Jian Ghomeshi affair” by Emma Healey http://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2014/11/26/after_arrest_lets_not_forget_lessons_of_jian_ghome shi_affair.html “Sexual Cyberbullying: The Modern Day Letter A” by Temitayo Fagbenle http://www.wnyc.org/story/259398- sexual-cyberbullying-modern-day-letter/ Everyday Sexism Project: https://twitter.com/EverydaySexism PEW Research Centre “Online Harassment” report http://www.pewinternet.org/files/2014/10/PI_OnlineHarassment_102214_1.pdf Resources

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