’Spycam porn’ sparks record protests in South Korea


  • ASEAN+
  • Saturday, 04 Aug 2018

We’re watching you too: South Korean women staging a monthly protest against secretly filmed spycam pornography in Seoul. — AFP

SEOUL: Even a record heatwave will not keep Claire Lee from joining tens of thousands of South Korean women at a mass protest today against secretly filmed spycam pornography as anger over the issue swells.

Since May, the monthly demonstration in Seoul has shattered records to become the biggest women’s protest in South Korea, where the global #MeToo movement has unleashed an unprecedented wave of female-led activism.

Their target: so-called molka or spycam videos which largely involve men secretly filming women in schools, offices, trains, toilets and changing rooms.

“Entering a public bathroom is such an unnerving experience now,” Lee, a 21-year-old student said, adding that she always checked the walls for any “suspicious holes”.

The number of spycam crimes reported has surged from around 1,100 in 2010 to more than 6,500 last year.

Now, women are fighting back. Over 55,000 attended last month’s protest in Seoul, according to its organisers.

Asia’s fourth-largest economy takes pride in its tech prowess, from ultra-fast Internet to cutting-edge smartphones.

But these advances have also given rise to tech-savvy peeping Toms, with videos widely shared in chatrooms and on file-sharing sites, or used as adverts for websites promoting prostitution.

Justice is rarely served – most offenders are fined or given suspended jail terms.

“The police rarely respond when female victims ask for the immediate arrest of the offender,” Seo Seung-hui, head of the non-profit Korea Cyber Sexual Violence Response Centre, said.

Campaigners have called for harsher punishments for those who film, distribute and view such images, and tougher rules to restrict the sale of high-tech spycam equipment. — AP


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