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It’s something many women have experienced online and, although Hewson tried to make light of it she was left feeling shocked, and quit the site.
Indeed, unsolicited “dick pics” have become such a problem on online dating services that one site, Ok Cupid, actually removed the capability to send images.
What would possess someone to send a graphic image of themselves without ever being asked for one, or even thinking to check if it might be appreciated?
When it comes to the internet, it seems common sense to think that the physical distance and anonymity the online world provides allows, even encourages, people to do things they wouldn’t normally do “in real life”.
If you don’t believe your actions hold any consequences for you, then there is no fear of the social ramifications which might normally keep certain behaviours in check.
Within two days I had made it to number #3 in the top 100 women in my age group.
None of this was because I’m exceptionally stunning or unique.
Misogynistic harassment is a serious issue for online dating services.
Violent threats, hostile outbursts and being blackmailed into sending explicit images, are just some examples of the potential fall-out a woman might face – even for just ignoring or rebuffing a would-be suitor.
In a culture where men are generally still expected to take the lead in sexual relationships, being denied all of these opportunities may make some men feel powerless in the online dating game and so turn to harassment or intimidation to try and re-establish a sense of power.