On April 24, 2013, when social activist Kavita Krishnan went online to participate in a chat about whether banning porn was a solution to sexual violence against women, she was abused and threatened with rape by a user. Krishnan isn’t alone. If the last few years are any indicator, abuse is common on social media.
“The nature of abuse, however, varies based on the gender of the victim,” says Riddhima Sharma, founder of Fempositive, who will be conducting a special Q&A this weekend on the role gender plays in our online interactions. “Mostly men are threatened with murder, but whenever the victim is a woman, the obvious threat is rape,” she adds.
Sharma adds that while the Web has emerged as an open and vast space for innovation, sharing and finding information, and collaborating with like-minded people, it has also given birth to a breed of abusers who misuse the anonymity of the Web to abuse people and get away with it without any punishment.
Organised in association with Queer-Ink, the discussion aims to bring people together to share their online experiences, and explore the role gender may have played in those experiences.
“Most of the time, victims are people who speak out against the status-quo. A lot of people from the LGBT community are also abused because they belong to a particular community. We are also going to talk about such experiences,” she says.
The discussion is open to all but prior registration is compulsory due to limited availability of seats.
On: April 10, 5 pm onwards
At: The Hive, 50-A, Huma Mansion, next To Ahmed Bakery, Chuim Village Road, off Union Park, Khar (W).