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Cyberstalking By Proxy
"Looking to please and to be pleased," said the ad, posted on Craigslist's
Oklahoma area website in the “casual encounters” category on June 25. It
detailed various sex acts the poster would voluntarily engage in, much of the
explicit language unpublishable here. Then this: "I will do group sex or one on
one or with other women. ... My mother might join us. Her name is Pam." At
the end, there was a name, a telephone number and a plea for calls.
In case you didn't know. This was a false ad trying to get strangers to call this woman in an effort to harass her. This is nothing new. This has been tried before usually with the criminals who post such ads going to jail for stalking.
A new name for an old crime. I've heard of stalking by proxy which primarily takes place in the offline world but this is a new one on me. The crime of cyberstalking however is not new to me. I've talked about my own case from a few years back on my blog and in my articles on Hubpages so I'm no stranger to stalking. In fact, this wasn't the first time I'd been stalked.
What's truly amazing about this story is that when Pam(the girls mother who had no interest in random sexual encounters gathered the evidence on her own that it was her daughter's ex boyfriend) went to the police with the evidence she'd gathered the police told her it was a civil matter. Stalking is a civil matter? Since when? Sounds like the time my neighbor was getting credit cards in my name and the police called it kid stuff. Rather than identity theft which it was.
Some police depts are not only stupid and naive in my opinion but don't want to deal with crimes like these and if they do want to deal with it they are ill equipped to do so so they tell the victim whatever lame line they have to to get them out of their offices. Which is a sad shame. Because many of these perpertrators will act on their crimes. When they grow bored with simply trying to send strange men to someone's house they may do more. And even if they don't there's no way of knowing when one of these perverts is going to show up for his jollies and become angry thinking the victim has either changed her mind or is teasing him. It's a dangerous situation no matter which way it could go and it's appalling that some police depts are not taking these threats seriously.
The postings were on craigslist. How many times has this happened there yet they still allow people to put someone's name, phone number and/or address in the ad. They could put a swift stop to that by simply not allowing any personal information in the ad including an email address, website/blog url or any information pointing to a social networking account or usernames of any kind that could point to the victim. By simply allowing no personal information would certainly cut down on the amount of people being harassed by avenues such as craigslist. Heaven knows google groups/usenet allowed it for the longest time but I think they've even put a stop to it now or most of it anyway.
I'm not saying this is going to stop criminals/vengeful people but it could go a long way to curbing the problem. At least if the perpertrator wanted to give out a victims personal information he/she would have to do it through email. That would require someone answering the ad then the avenger emailing the person back. It puts one more step in there of giving out personal information. It would also require some interaction that the perpertrator might be unwilling to engage in or not have the time.
It's time police took these matters far more seriously than they are.
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