Saturday, December 4, 2010

Internet Violence Against Women: Have we really come to this?

I’ve literally been disconnected with what is going on in the real world ever since I’ve been away for four months this past summer. 
And let me tell you, there are fucking loads to catch up on.

The one thing I wish I didn’t have to catch up on was overhearing a troubling story with my roommate as we stumbled upon an episode of The Oprah Show yesterday morning.  

It was in that moment that I was able to catch a glimpse of one of the most horrific stories of rape ever recorded within the internet era.
 And it only that took place at the beginning of this very year.

 I use the word internet strategically, because what I really want to suggest is that we are entering into a new medium of violence against women. 

That of internet rape.  

I mention this matter in light of the fact that Sarah Kostonvy’s ex boyfriend most recently placed a false ad on Craiglist in her name claiming that she wanted to be raped. 

Specifically, the ad indicated that Sarah needed an, “aggressive man who had no concern for women.”

As the story went, Sarah later found this ad on Craiglist which she discovered to explicitly contain photographs of her stolen off from her Myspace account.  

Following this discovery, she was followed to her home and violently raped by a man on her living room floor for over half an hour. 

 While she was in the hospital recovering from her sustained injuries, her fiancé went back to her house to collect her belongings. He only got as far as the front door to be able to discern the presence of another man in Sarah’s living room.

Equipped with a video camera.

 Waiting for Sarah to come home.

 So he could rape her.

Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck.

After doing some research, I was able to discover that it wasn’t just two men set up to rape Sarah but rather 21 “appointments” had already been made to rape her during the course of that week.  

Even more horrifying was the fact that a total of 161 men had replied to this posting online.

While both the internet rapist and the physical rapist received a sentence of life in prison (60 years), media reports failed to mention whether r not the men who had appointments and the men who had replied to the posting received any sort of punishment.  

This fucking scares the shit out of me.

When people post messages on the internet, in most circumstances it is considered public space. 

This renders them nearly no responsibility for their linguistic communication.  
I know there are some laws in place now to ‘protect’ human bodies from internet abuse, but nothing is set in stone when it comes to internet violence against women. 

While it may be perceived by society that she was advertising a rape fantasy, this in no fucking way shape or form is a rape fantasy.

A rape fantasy for some is a fabulous form of eroticism and for those that partake, fuck ya!

But in these circumstances, it is a consensual form of fucking in which a safe word is used in case the person needs their partner to stop, slow down etc.

Even if Sarah herself had posted on the internet that she really wanted to participate in a rape fantasy, no grounds would have been established for  the negotiation of such sexual encounters.

Not only should this lack of consent be highlighted but this rape is furthered confounded by the fact that it was her ex boyfriend that placed the ad claiming that she had this type of fantasy.

He was selling her body to be raped.

Today Craiglist is no longer allowed to have any sort of sexual negotiations online, yet this does not stop such instances from happening on another online social networking site.  

It just seems to me like a more advanced form of violence against women via the internet, a form which is only further made complicated by the fact that society in some cases disconnects responsibility because of the computer sitting between the physical person and words on the screen.

Such violence is something that we need to address as soon as possible so that crimes like what happened to Sarah Kostonvy never ever happens again the future.


In solidarity,

No comments:

Post a Comment