Trolling or Online Gender-Based Violence? The best caption that perfectly describes these occurrences on the ground according to the word on the streets is trolling. Looking at the topic at a glance, it seemed easy-peasy since nowadays the word gender-based violence is thrown around like confetti, only that the subject of discourse means different things when one crosses boundaries from the rich to the poor, learned and unlearned. “What is love if you are not here with me?” In this case love being synonymous with domestic abuse where one’s tolerance to pain seems to only end in death.
If this is a free space then allow me to vent. In recent times, online gender-based violence has no boundaries. The good lie is that even though most people will fast forward it as a women thingy, according to Web Foundation: women and girls are indeed deeply affected. Ever wondered why women in politics and in other fields have bodyguards? Ah! It’s a security mandate, but against who? If someone can attack them online, yea, a Chinese wall is not enough to protect them from offline physical attacks. Being a woman king is not for the faint hearted.
The funny thing about this topic is that it does not have defined standards. The other day, the former president of the United States, Barack Obama, was a victim of this. A sound byte from one of his speeches was manipulated to come off as an enemy. It leaves one to wonder if the commoner should be worried.
Sometimes there is no solution to Online Gender-Based Violence (OGBV). It’s human nature. Azziad Nasenya; a TikTok dancer, has been trolled constantly for being normal: posting pictures without makeup, and attacked for coming out to raise awareness on acne. Out here is just survival of the fittest.
Wondering if it gets better? forgive me, but the answer is NO! A large number of people do not have Twitter accounts. Ever heard of “Kenyans on Twitter(KOT)?” Opening that account at one’s own risk becomes the SEO keywords of the day, and dare you try to air out one’s opinions…there are rumors that planet Mars can actually support human life.
The proverbial saying that women are each other’s enemies seems to have shifted. Who has noted? Anyone? When it comes to gender-based violence many cases are from women. What about men? Due to archaic societal constructs, a man who speaks up becomes the simp of the day, week and even months. Their vulnerability becomes a syllabus about the do’s and don’ts.
Instagram stories are about celebs revealing how blocking has become the holy grail. But the fact that pseudo accounts can be created is sad. Today even trolls seem to have a brighter future. The blue checkmark on Twitter for verification of credible accounts is up for grabs. Albeit there are cyber laws in the world, with the constant evolving of technology, it has to take teamwork and individuals embracing self-love.

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