This Week in the Mercury


Monday, August 11, 2014

Jezebel: "We Have a Rape Gif Problem and Gawker Media Won't Do Anything About It"

Posted by David Schmader on Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 11:00 AM

The staff at Jezebel—the feminist wing of the Gawker Media empire—posts an open letter:


For months, an individual or individuals has been using anonymous, untraceable burner accounts to post gifs of violent pornography in the discussion section of stories on Jezebel. The images arrive in a barrage, and the only way to get rid of them from the website is if a staffer individually dismisses the comments and manually bans the commenter. But because IP addresses aren't recorded on burner accounts, literally nothing is stopping this individual or individuals from immediately signing up for another, and posting another wave of violent images....None of us are paid enough to deal with this on a daily basis.

In refusing to address the problem, Gawker's leadership is prioritizing theoretical anonymous tipsters over a very real and immediate threat to the mental health of Jezebel's staff and readers. If this were happening at another website, if another workplace was essentially requiring its female employees to manage a malevolent human pornbot, we'd report the hell out of it here and cite it as another example of employers failing to take the safety of its female employees seriously. But it's happening to us. It's been happening to us for months. And it feels hypocritical to continue to remain silent about it.


Whole thing here.

UPDATE: Gawker Media's editorial director responds on Twitter:

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