The problem

Three in five…

Three in five adult Australians report experiencing some form of digital harassment and abuse, our Summary Report reveals.

Overall men and women were just as likely to report experiencing digital harassment and abuse, while women (1 in 5) and younger adults ( 1 in 4, aged 18 to 19) were most likely to experience sexual harassment.

Key findings from the Summary Report also reveals a concerning level of image-based abuses:

1 in 10 Australian adults said that a nude or semi-nude image of them was sent onto others or posted online without their consent.

The findings suggest the need for law reform in some areas, but also recommend more proactive steps be taken by internet and social media service providers, as well as individual ‘bystanders’ to challenge digital harassment and abuse when they see it.

A copy of the Summary Report can be downloaded here: REPORT_AustraliansExperiencesofDigitalHarassmentandAbuse

What is the project about? Why is it being conducted?

This study explores the nature, impact and scope of technology-facilitated sexual violence and harassment. Our aim was to document adult’s experiences of these harms, and identify the gaps within current Australian law and policy for responding to such behaviours.

For the purposes of our study, we were particularly interested in hearing about experiences of: online sexual harassment, or stalking-type behaviours, whether via mobile phones, social media sites and via the use of other technologies
• the recording and/or distribution of intimate or sexual images without permission
• threats to record and/or distribute intimate or sexual images
• unwanted sexual requests and experiences, such as via online dating sites and social applications
• abusive, offensive and hateful speech directed a you on the basis of your sex, gender identity or sexuality, and
• other experiences where online or mobile phone technologies have been used to harass, abuse, stalk or otherwise harm, or cause you to feel unsafe.