The Wall Street Journal reports on the reactions to the Hollaback harassment video.
[T]he woman in the video, actress Shoshana B. Roberts, and the anti-harassment organization that sponsored it, Brooklyn-based Hollaback!, have also received a host of death and rape threats, officials say. Those threats, which have been passed along to New York City police, underscore how casually some people view street harassment, experts say.
“We’ve had so many people reach out saying, ‘Thank God, this is exactly what my day looks like,’ or people who were shocked, saying, ‘I had no idea that this is what women face. I’m so grateful,’” said Emily May, the co-founder and executive director of Hollaback!. “But we’ve also gotten this tremendous backlash from people saying just horrific things and a number of violent threats.”
Because how dare anyone document street harassment of women? It’s a human right to harass women on the street. Women are public property, and pretty women are like 90 squillion times more public property, so obviously if they object to it there has to be a tremendous backlash.
The video was shot by filmmaker Rob Bliss, who approached Hollaback! with the idea in August after his girlfriend told him stories of being harassed while walking down the street.
“I felt like no one had really clearly demonstrated what street harassment looks like,” Mr. Bliss said. “No [one] had shown the world what it looks and feels like to a person.”
Mr. Bliss’s team recorded the video over the course of 10 hours using a GoPro camera hidden inside a gym bag and two microphones held by Ms. Roberts. The team navigated the city’s busiest and most frequently cited places of harassment: Midtown Manhattan, Wall Street, SoHo, the Brooklyn Bridge area and Harlem.
In the video, several men yell things such as “hey beautiful” and “how you doing?” to Ms. Roberts, who is dressed casually in jeans and a T-shirt and doesn’t respond to the catcalls. One unidentified man follows her for five minutes.
Hey, she’s outside, she’s on the street, she’s fair game. Public property, I tell you.