Where to now with the #mencallmethings momentum?

a winged monkey sculpture crouched against a chimney stack

Source: monkeyswithwings.com

As someone who’s been writing for years about gendered cyberbullying, I haven’t had much to add to this week’s #mencallmethings blogaround and Twitter hashtag discussion: I’ve said it all before, many times.

A yellow handled sledgehammer with BANHAMMER written on the handle, in front of a grey cloud. Caption reads TODAY'S FORECAST: CLOUDY, WITH A CHANCE OF BANHAMMER

Today's Forecast: Cloudy with a chance of Banhammer

I will briefly add my broken record bit about how our strict comment moderation policy here at Hoyden About Town and our notoriously banhammer-happy wayshave meant that we now receive very little abuse submitted as comments here – it’s obvious that it will never be published and that we have filters in place so that we don’t even see it to delete it, so they don’t bother. There is rather more abuse and threats submitted to the Feminism 101 blog, unsurprisingly.

My small contribution to the ongoing discussion about gendered cyberbullying for today is that I’ve now used the Series feature in this template to collate the most relevant Hoyden posts from the last 4 1/2 years on the topic – you can see the full list (most recent first) in the section below the foot of this post (just above the author-box).

The gendered cyber harassment campaigns are rank intimidation aimed at silencing us.  We have to keep on talking about it so that they do not succeed.

Categories: ethics & philosophy, gender & feminism, violence

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

7 replies

  1. Thank you for calling it “cyberbullying” and “abuse” rather than “trolling” – I feel that a lot of the problem so far has been because this behaviour has been lumped in with trolling which is a rather different activity.

    • I guess there’s some level of overlap between the abusive bullies and the trolls (certainly if one doesn’t join in the LULZ doin’ it 4 teh LULZ on certain forums then one can find oneself being abused) but you’re absolutely right that one does not necessarily imply the other.

  2. Hello all – thanks for this, I’ve been collecting readings for some time on the matter and I’m now conducting a podcast interview with two women about the issue and how sexism in atheism (and/or) skepticism reflects the wider landscape that faces women.
    If there’s anyone who’d like to propose questions or strategies, please email me via the website? I’m at tokenskeptic gmail. Thanks and thanks VERY much for the list of blog-posts!

  3. #mencallmethings came in useful in a somewhat unexpected way last night. Was chatting with a couple of friends – one male one female – about sexism and gender stuff. Got the “well we’re pretty much ok these days” line. The only concrete example I could think of on the run (I was tired) was #mencallmethings, so I explained what it was about and the sorts of threats women get when they have the temerity to exist online.
    I was expecting some kind of “that doesn’t prove anything” or “that’s only one specific example” (even though these people are progressive, and they do think and are willing to listen to, and be convinced by, rational argument), but what I got instead was absolute wide-eyed shock and a sudden understanding that, oh, we’re not pretty much ok these days.
    (Even with that, I did get the “oh, all those crazies” line, and pointed out that, amazingly enough, many people with mental illness(es) manage not to abuse people on the internet; on the whole, it’s not crazy people who carry out the abuse, but totally “normal” men (mostly) who are scared of losing power and privilege.)
    So it just might mean that the awareness-raising that hey, this is happening and it’s absolutely NOT COOL, and other effects of #mencallmethings, might extend beyond the internet. Awesome.

  4. Great usage of an internet meme in meatspace, Jo – very heartening.
    I’m noticing, as I catch up on some reading around this topic, that as the momentum has kept on and women have kept on blogging with variations of “no, I won’t rise above it, I will resist it” that the drive-by GET A GRIP IT’S JUST THE INTERNET comments are starting to appear with more frequency. Whiners.

  5. Might be time to ramp up the “Who says it has to be the internet? Who made that rule?” although that could get tiring fast too.

  6. “It’s just the internet”? I’m sorry?
    Would anyone say “It’s just the phone”? “It’s just the mail”? “It’s just words”? (oh, yeah, they do, because it’s only Real Rapey Rape if the woman has broken bones and signed affidavits from three adult male witnesses that she was screaming and resisting the whole time, plus she has to be virgin, be dressed appropriately, it can’t have been after dark, the rapist must be a complete stranger, etc. Anything less than that is purely random happenstance that has nothing to do with misogyny or rape culture.)

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