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article imageReddit sees dramatic reduction in revenge porn victim reports

By James Walker     Apr 27, 2015 in Internet
Reddit's community leader has updated the world on the website's continuing efforts to eradicate revenge porn. The popular discussion board known as the "front page of the Internet" has promised that revenge porn will not be tolerated.
The full statement can be found on CNN. It begins with Reddit's community head announcing "I spent the start of this year learning as much as I could about revenge porn."
The website first announced its anti-revenge porn policy on February 24th. It has now released the first results from the new policy.
From its introduction to March 30th, Reddit received contact from 15 victims of revenge porn seeking to have content removed from the site. During April, only 2 victims have made contact. Reddit is hoping that there will be none in May.
The site says it has two goals with its revenge porn policy: to make it easier for victims to contact the site and get image removed and to be pre-emptive and active in discouraging revenge porn.
The statement explains: "First, we wanted to make the process easier for victims to contact us and have the images removed. Having even one site be responsive, respectful, and quick to act can make a positive difference for victims. […] Our second goal was to be pre-emptive — to discourage revenge porn before it starts. If we won’t tolerate it, maybe fewer people will follow through."
The logic is sound and should help to reduce the revenge porn on Reddit. The site will have to be careful to ensure it can maintain its stringent new measures in the long term though.
The community head writes Reddit only sees a tiny part of the much larger revenge porn problem — "maybe one or two images on a website." It is also easy for the site to remove content, although some sites make it possible to view deleted Reddit comments. The company promises that images will always be removed though, saying "We did not want to Reddit to be a part of that nightmare [of making it hard to remove images]."
Reddit is moving to proactiveness in preventing revenge porn from happening and protecting victims when it unfortunately does. It is exhibiting frustration at the often inadequate responses of the police, saying:
"Law enforcement is slow to catch up to technology. […] When your response [to where this happened] is 'The Internet', it immediately becomes an uncharted territory."
This has been a common concern among victims who have often ended up visiting conventional law enforcement to resolve revenge porn issues. Reddit is making it much easier for victims to take issues up directly with the site though, avoiding the added complexity and worry of visiting a police station staffed by officers unfamiliar with the landscape of the Internet.
The site also commends the efforts of other companies, singling out Twitter, who implemented similar revenge porn policies soon after Reddit introduced them. It is encouraging to see some of the largest community sites online taking such an active stance against one of the largest menaces of the modern Internet. With Reddit and Twitter no longer tolerating it, time may begin to run out for the victimising practice of revenge porn.
More about Reddit, Revenge, Porn, revenge porn, Abuse
 
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