A group identifying as “men’s rights activists” recently targeted a college’s anonymous online rape report system by filling it with spam. The idea, as they explain, is to fill the system with so many false reports that it undermines its purpose and makes it unusable.
The campaign began when a linkwas posted to the /r/MensRights group on Reddit. That link sends group members to a new anonymous reporting system set up by California’s Occidental College. There, students can report sexual violence without revealing their identities.
The Reddit post made in the men’s rights activist group was titled: “Feminists at Occidental College created an online form to anonymously report rape/sexual assault. You can just fill out a form and the person is called into the office on a rape charge. The ‘victim’ never has to prove anything or reveal their identity.”
That description is actually inaccurate. Instead, as the online form itself explains, charges could not be leveled against a person based on an anonymous testimony. Rather, the new system hopes to “identify and address troubling trends.” If a person is named, they may have to meet with a member of the dean’s staff. Together they would review the school’s policies on sexual misconduct and the student would be told to stop his behavior, if true.
Regardless, members of the men’s rights activist Reddit group say they’ve begun spamming the Occidental College system. Many such comments have been deleted as the post draws attention and outrage from all across the internet. However, at the time writing, the post remains on the Reddit group with 646 upvotes and 520 comments.
One reply bragged that it “looks like there is an epidemic at Occidental, particularly female-on-female assault. Even though most of these will be scrubbed, I promise the numbers will be kept and used to justify programs.”
Another commented: “Let’s get submitting boys? Has anyone been raped by the dean of woman’s studies? Surely somebody.” In response one user remarked that “filling this out is fun!”
Critics of the men’s rights activist group say that spamming the anonymous report system is a questionable form of protest and undermines their credibility. Many Reddit group members, however, seem to support the tactic.
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