Amplifying Abuse: The Fusion of Cyberharassment and Discrimination
4 Pages Posted: 23 Oct 2015 Last revised: 9 Mar 2016
Date Written: October 22, 2015
Cyberharassment devastates its victims. Anxiety, panic attacks, and fear are common effects; post-traumatic stress disorder, anorexia and bulimia, and clinical depression are common diagnoses. Targets of online hate and abuse have gone into hiding, changed schools, and quit jobs to prevent further abuse. Some lives are devastated in adolescence and are never able to recover. Some lives come to tragic, premature ends. Danielle Keats Citron not only teases out these effects in her masterful work, Hate Crimes in Cyberspace; she also makes the profound conclusion that these personal effects are part of a larger social cancer that breeds sexism, subjugation, and inequality. I would like to emphasize a further point: for sexual minorities, institutional discrimination amplifies cyberharassment’s horrors.
Keywords: cyberharassment, LGBT, privacy, internet
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