The recent attack targeting Nancy Pelosi exemplifies the real-world risk to women of violence stemming from the online vitriol targeting them in politics, especially women of color, which is more likely to be gendered, personal and invoke sexual violence, reports Rebecca Klar for The Hill.
Experts say the rise of social media and its secretive algorithms are increasing the threat level facing women in the public arena, in a way that could dissuade women from running for office.
Women of color were more likely than any other group to be subject to misogynistic and racist content, including white women and men of color, and also faced the highest percentage of tweets targeting them that combined disinformation and abuse, according to a report from the Center for Technology and Democracy (CDT).
The CDT report also found that the racist and sexist attacks targeting women were present regardless of the candidate’s party affiliation.
Meanwhile, Dominick Mostrangelo reports that Elon Musk and former President Trump appear to be at the forefront of conspiracy theories now circulating online in the wake of the attack.
Trump called it a “sad situation” before suggesting no one had broken into the Speaker’s house, while Musk tweeted a link to an article focusing on the event from a website known for publishing false information.