A friend of mine brought this web site to my attention and it needs to be shared. So often, women (sometimes men) are victimized on the street by men under the cover of anonymity. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the women are raped or physically contacted. Strangers commonly shout things at women as they walk in public, make obscene gestures, or even just stare at them. Contrary though it may seem, this is “socially acceptable”, because they can get away with it without any of their acquaintances ever finding out. It is normal and tolerated. Their mom will never know that they cat-called a woman as she walked by, their girlfriend will never know that they took pictures of a stranger all while wearing a suggestive smile, their boss will never know they solicited obscene favors from a woman who was clearly perturbed by the suggestion. The streets of a major city are perhaps even more anonymous than the internet, in that there are no IP addresses or other cyber crumbs to follow.
Hollaback! aims to start a movement “dedicated to ending street harassment using mobile technology.” Now, when a woman is harassed or even made uncomfortable by a stranger on the streets, she can snap a picture and upload the story to this site. Now, his mom, girlfriend, and boss can finally become brutally aware of just how much of a womanizer he really is.
This web site has a smart phone app. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m downloading it right now and looking forward to my next encounter with a social deviant. :)