A Bristol student has found a new use for Snapchat – the social media app, popular with young people, that displays pictures for a short period of time.
Hannah Price’s campaign #RevoltAgainstSexualAssault harnesses Snapchat’s filters to encourage students to voice their experiences of sexual assault, while maintaining a masked identity.
Participants are encouraged to reveal the sexual abuse, sexual harassment and sexism that lurks beneath the surface of university life nationwide.
Campaign leader and student of the University of Bristol, Hannah Price, explains that “The Snapchat element allows each victim to bring their experiences to life, in a humanising way, reminding the viewer that they are not just statistics.” Using a platform which is second nature to many millennials (almost a third of 18 to 25 year olds use Snapchat), the campaign has revealed stories that might have otherwise stayed under wraps.
Writing in the University of Bristol’s student newspaper, Epigram, Price explains how the students’ faces were transformed by Snapchat’s face-tracking software, giving them anonymity and therefore the confidence to find their voice.
With the Crime Survey of England and Wales reporting that, in 2013, a staggering 1 in 5 women in the UK had experienced some form of sexual violence, and a 2015 Telegraph survey finding that a third of female students had experienced inappropriate touching, this is a campaign that speaks to many.
#RevoltAgainstSexualAssault aims to ensure that sexual assault no longer remains a topic to be suppressed. It rejects victim blaming, and asks that men be taught not to rape, rather than women being taught not to walk home alone at night, or not to wear provocative clothing.
One anonymous contributor spoke of how the campaign made her feel empowered, while others have found the experience helping them to acknowledge and accept what has happened to them.
Hannah Price has turned some of the anonymous entries into a six-minute video, with young women speaking frankly about their experiences of many different types of sexual assault. Her project aims to humanise the statistics, and show the impact these actions have on each individuals.