One of the campaigners behind moves for a woman to feature on British bank notes is galvanising Twitter after receiving violent rape threats following the success of the bank note campaign.
Caroline Criado-Perez has involved police after being victimised on the social networking site since Thursday and is calling on Twitter to take more action against such posters.
Thousands have now signed a petition calling on Twitter to install a “report abuse” button on tweets and head of business at Twitter UK, Tony Wang, tweeted that the service was testing a report abuse function.
Criado-Perez is the founder of the Week Woman blog and was part of the campaign to have a British woman on Bank of England notes. Over 35,000 signed a petition and the bank announced on Wednesday that Jane Austen would become the next historical figure on bank notes.
However, following the news she began receiving a barrage of abuse on Twitter and decided to take action.
Writing in the New Statesman, Criado-Perez said: “There are those who tell me that I shouldn’t feed the trolls. Ignore them, they’ll get bored and go away. They’re just looking for attention.
“Except these ones are different. They’re not looking for attention. They are purely and simply looking to shut me, and any other woman who dares use her voice in public, “the fuck up”. And we shouldn’t give them what they want.
“Let’s remember this,” she added. “Let’s start feeding the trolls. Let’s start shouting back, and show them that we’re not going away, that we won’t be defeated. Let’s take them on. And let’s win.”
The campaigner said she had been “overwhelmed” by messages of support. High profile tweeters such as Caitlin Moran and Owen Jones have backed her.
Who knows if a Report Abuse button IS the answer. But the QUESTION is, "What is Twitter going to do about sexist, racism, homophobic abuse"?— Caitlin Moran (@caitlinmoran) July 27, 2013
Also, we're testing ways to simplify reporting, e.g. within a Tweet by using the "Report Tweet" button in our iPhone app and on mobile web.— Tony Wang (@TonyW) July 27, 2013