Understanding Online Sexual Harassment

In today’s modern technological age, which includes computers and the internet, sexual harassment is no longer limited to face-to-face, in-person contact that occurs between  individuals. In fact, many instances of sexual harassment occur in the online world between people who are not physically close to one another. 

Even though the victim and the person committing the act of harassment might be located many miles apart, the harassment victim can still experience discrimination, threats, and coercion as a result of the unwanted harassment. Moreover, he or she might feel humiliated, sexualized, and/or exploited. 

Sexual harassment on the internet can occur through messenger systems, on social media platforms, and via chat forums, emails, and other electronic media. With significantly more people working remotely, online workplace sexual harassment has become more common.

If you are the victim of online sexual harassment that occurred in one of these contexts, you have legal options that are available to you. A knowledgeable California workplace sexual harassment attorney can explain what those legal options are and can help you pursue action that will put the sexual harassment at an end.

Defining Online Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment that occurs online is essentially sexual conduct that is unwelcome and that takes place on one or more digital platforms. Online sexual harassment can take the form of sexual advances, stalking, pornographic photos, inappropriate remarks, sexual jokes or innuendo, and derogatory comments that are made about an individual’s gender or overall appearance. Even body-shaming about a person is a type of sexual harassment that often takes place online.

Steps to Take if You are a Victim of Online Sexual Harassment

If you believe that you are a victim of online sexual harassment, there are certain steps that you should always take. First of all, you could install a filter on your computer, cell phone, tablet, or another electronic device. The purpose of this filter is to screen emails and calls from specific items or individuals, and which are related to particular subjects.

In addition, on many messaging forums, including chat forums, users have the ability to block others who send harassing or disparaging comments or messages. In addition, you should report the harassment to the individual who hosts the website or chat room. As a result, the host may block the individual who is harassing and/or prevent that individual from being able to post messages or engage in chats on the forum in the future.

Finally, you might be able to install an anti-spam program on your device. Spam essentially refers to unsolicited advertisements and other media that is irrelevant or harassing. These anti-spam devices might be able to block the harassment before it ever gets to you.

Online sexual harassment is even criminalized under certain situations, and an offender who is ultimately convicted could receive various types of fines and jail time as a punishment for his/her actions. If you believe that you are the victim of online sexual harassment, it is important that you speak with a California workplace sexual harassment attorney as soon as possible to find out what legal options you may have.

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