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Dating App Calls For Cyberflashing To Be Criminalised

by : Cameron Frew on : 04 Nov 2021 17:14
Dating App Is Calling For Cyberflashing To Be Criminalised@modems/Instagram/Alamy

Bumble is campaigning for cyberflashing to be made illegal across the whole of the UK.

Cyberflashing is the sending of unsolicited, obscene image(s) to strangers over any form of online messaging, whether it be WhatsApp or Facebook, or transferring them to another person’s phone using Bluetooth services like AirDrop on iPhones – the latter has become increasingly common, especially for women on public transport.

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In England and Wales, there’s no specific offence against this, yet indecent exposure can see people forced to sign the sex offenders’ register and serve a maximum of two years in prison. In Scotland, it’s an offence to cause a person to look at a sexual image without their consent.

Bumble. (Alamy)Alamy

Bumble, the dating app in which women always make the first move, is calling for the government to recognise cyberflashing as a serious issue and bring forward legislation making it a crime.

Bumble’s founder and CEO Whitney Wolfe Herd said, ‘Now more than ever, we spend a considerable amount of our lives online and yet we have fallen short of protecting women in online spaces,’ The Modems reports.

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‘Cyberflashing is a relentless, everyday form of harassment that causes victims, predominantly women, to feel distressed, violated, and vulnerable on the internet as a whole. It’s shocking that in this day and age we don’t have laws that hold people to account for this,’ she said.

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‘At Bumble we’ve been taking steps to tackle cyberflashing for years. We built a Private Detector feature that captures and blurs nude images, and successfully campaigned to make unsolicited nude images illegal in Texas. But this issue is bigger than just one company, and we cannot do this alone. We need Governments to take action to criminalise cyberflashing and enforce what is already a real-world law in the online world.’

Nearly a quarter of all millennial women have experienced cyberflashing in the UK, with almost half of those between the ages 18-24 receiving an explicit photo in the past year.

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Cameron Frew

Entertainment Editor at UNILAD. 2001: A Space Odyssey is the best film ever made, and Warrior is better than Rocky. That's all you need to know.

Topics: Technology, Bumble, Now, UK

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The Modems
  1. The Modems

    Bumble is fighting for ‘Cyberflashing’ to be criminalised