Giving Compass' Take:
- Tife Sanusi provides an overview of online gender-based violence, underscoring the prevalence of this issue on a global scale.
- How can donors support activists who are tackling these issues? What responsibility do social media companies have to regulate and address online hate speech and cyberbullying?
- Learn why tech companies need to combat gender-based violence online.
What is Giving Compass?
We connect donors to learning resources and ways to support community-led solutions. Learn more about us.
What Is Online Gender-Based Violence?
Online or technology-facilitated gender-based violence is a form of gender injustice and discrimination that takes place in online spaces. This type of GBV can include stalking, harassment, bullying, and unsolicited pornography, among other actions.
"There are different categories of online GBV," says Achieng. "It could be in the form of insults, trolling, misinformation, and a lot of other things. The most recent type is deepfakes (AI generated fake photos) and like all the other forms, it is used to silence and shame women."
Online GBV is especially dangerous because a lot of online spaces do not have enough rules and regulations to protect women from this type of violence, leading to perpetrators often not facing consequences for their harmful actions.
Some common forms of online GBV include:
- Cyberbullying — bullying with the use of digital technologies.
- Doxxing — revealing or publishing private information about a person online.
- Cyberstalking — the use of the internet to stalk or harass another person.
- Non-consensual pornography — distribution of sexually graphic images without consent.
- Trolling — deliberately upsetting other people by posting inflammatory content
3 Key Facts to Know About Online Gender-Based Violence
- 51% of girls online have reportedly experienced some form of online GBV personally.
- Of these, 85% said they have experienced multiple forms of harassment.
- 39% of girls across major cities in Africa are very concerned about their safety online.
Who Is Most Affected by Online GBV and Why?
As long as you share information on the internet, you are vulnerable to harassment, discrimination, and violence online. Women and girls are often particularly targeted, and especially so if they are politically outspoken, are Black, identify as LGBTQ+, or have a disability.
What Action Can We All Take?
Perhaps the most obvious solution to all forms of gender-based violence is for all people to stop harassing women and girls, both online and in real-life.
But until that happens, staying informed on the different types of online GBV is essential to taking action, and you can do that by following and supporting social media accounts advocating for the end of this type of violence, including those of Garnett Achieng, Seyi Akiwowo, Hera Hussain.
You can also join us in taking action as part of our "Demand Equity" campaigning, calling for world leaders and the private sector to #ActForEqual for gender equality.
Read the full article about online gender-based violence by Tife Sanusi at Global Citizen.