Some of the women journalists whom IPI has interviewed over the years have said that one way to get some distance to the online misogyny they faced was to take it as a subject of analysis for their work. Azerbaijani journalist Arzu Geybulleva, for example, reported on the troll armies that directed their hatred against her. In certain cases and in the right circumstances, this can be an effective strategy to minimise the impact of these attacks.
The film #FatUglySlut is another example. Directed by Florence Hainaut and Myriam Leroy, prominent journalists in Belgium, the documentary portrays the stories of several women, from different backgrounds, ages and origins, that dealt sexist abuse and violent threats online. The twist is that both Hainaut and Leroy have themselves been at the bull’s eye of recurrent misogynistic campaigns online.
IPI Head of Digital Communications Javier Luque interviews both directors in this new episode of The Press Freedom Files dedicated to the phenomenon of online harassment against journalists. Luque leads IPI advocacy efforts to address online harassment through the Ontheline project, which he helped developing in his first year in IPI.
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This episode of ‘The Press Freedom Files’ was produced by the International Press Institute (IPI) as part of its Newsrooms Ontheline project, which looks into measures to address online harassment in newsrooms. Newsrooms Ontheline is financially supported by a grant from the Adessium Foundation.