Mobile apps tap the crowds to fight street harassment

Mobile apps tap the crowds to fight street harassment

Some 80 to 90 percent of women have experienced harassment on the street, yet traditionally there's little they can do about it. That's the primary motivation behind Hollaback, a crowdsourcing project that aims to help victims fight back by sharing their stories online and using a mobile app to focus attention on the perpetrators.

Street harassment is what New York-based Hollaback calls a “gateway crime”, with implicit acceptance of it helping to legitimize other forms of gender-based violence. We've already seen a variety of initiatives spring up in Mexico in response to such abuse — including a women-only bus service and female-friendly taxis, for example — but Hollaback hopes to address the problem at a deeper level by publicly raising awareness about the issue.

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