This is how often girls are called ‘sluts’ and ‘whores’ on the internet
Half the offenders were other women
Women are targeted by misogynistic online abuse up to seven times a minute, new research has found.
A new Demos social media study analysed thousands of aggressive and abusive tweets sent from UK Twitter accounts belonging to both men and women. Their research looked for the words “slut” and “whore” over a three week period and found over 6,500 women were targeted by a staggering 10,000 explicitly aggressive and misogynistic tweets.
Internationally the number was even higher, with over 200,000 aggressive tweets sent to 80,000 people in the same amount of time. A previous study found that “slut” and “whore” dominate misogynistic online language, particularly on Twitter. Shockingly though, 50 per cent of the perpetrators were women targeting other women.
The study has been linked to the #ReclaimTheInternet political movement, which campaigns to support women and encourage female participation on social media. Commenting on the findings, Alex Krasodomski-Jones, Researcher in the Centre for the Analysis of Social Media at Demos, said:“It is clear that just as the digital world has created new opportunities for public debate and social interaction, it has also built new battlegrounds for the worst aspects of human behaviour. This study provides a birds-eye snapshot of what is ultimately a very personal and often traumatic experience for women. While we have focused on Twitter, who are considerably more generous in sharing their data with researchers like us, it’s important to note that misogyny is prevalent across all social media, and we must make sure that the other big tech companies are also involved in discussions around education and developing solutions. This is less about policing the internet than it is a stark reminder that we are frequently not as good citizens online as we are offline.”