Law student tries to shut down Facebook page of university "hotties"
15 April 2016
A female law student has launched a petition to close a Facebook page called "Hotties of Melbourne University
". The petition, which has gained over 23,000 signatures so far, says that the group "perpetuates rape culture
The page posts photos of female students without their permission and provides details about them including their degree and their whereabouts on campus. Adolescent gawping keyboard warriors then pile on to rate the photos and provide comments, which are mainly lewd ("phwooar I'd motorboat that
") and offensive ("tuckshop arms and turtle face
"). The page also features male students too, although the majority of comments on those photos are from other males making jokes.
How not to develop social skills at University
Law student Laura Blandthorn has started a campaign to shut it down. She
wrote in a law student publication
that the page "reeks of sexual harassment
" and "normalises predatory behaviour
" by hiding behind "the hollow gloss of false humour
". She was also alarmed to see that fellow law students followed the page, and urged them to "unlike" it. The
online petition can be viewed, and signed, here
As well as gaining wide support from the petition, Blandthorn also has the backing of the University. Susan Elliott, Deputy head of Melbourne University, said that the page was "absolutely at odds
" with the university's values. She added that the university had contacted Facebook to remove the page, but had been informed that the Zuckerberg-machine did not consider the material to be offensive.