Jane Austen Bank Note Campaigner Threatened By Twitter Trolls

by Rebecca Martin

Caroline Criado-Perez, the journalist and campaigner responsible for landing Jane Austen her long-awaited spot on the new ten pound bank note, has been thrust into the spotlight after receiving a series of violent and obscene messages on Twitter.

Days after celebrating her incredible win against the Bank Of England, which saw her 35,000-strong petition secure Jane Austen a coveted bank note portrait, Caroline was subjected to rape and death threats from Twitter users.
Police have today arrested a 21-year-old man in Manchester on suspicion of harassment in connection with the malicious tweets.

A petition has now been drawn up in Caroline's support, calling on Twitter to introduce a new 'report abuse' button, like Facebook's, so that threatening tweets can be dealt with more swiftly and efficiently. It's already received over 12,000 votes.



Caroline said: 'It's sadly not unusual to get this kind of abuse but I've never seen it get as intense or aggressive as this. It's infuriating that the price you pay for standing up for women is 24 hours of rape threats. We are showing that by standing together we can make a real difference.

'We made the Bank of England change its mind, we can do the same with Twitter.'

It was announced by the Bank Of England last week that Jane Austen will appear on the ten pound bak note from 2017. Caroline drew up the petition after it was reported that Winston Churchill would replace Elizabeth Fry on the new five pound note, leaving no more women on British bank notes.



Tony Wang, the general manager of Twitter UK, tweeted today: 'We encourage users to report an account for violation of the Twitter rules by using one of our report forms. Also, we're testing ways to simplify reporting, e.g. within a Tweet by using the 'Report Tweet' button in our iPhone app and on mobile web.

'We will suspend accounts that, once reported to us, are found to be in breach of our rules.'

A Twitter spokeswoman added: 'The ability to report individual tweets for abuse is currently available on Twitter for iPhone and we plan to bring this functionality to other platforms, including Android and the web.

'We don't comment on individual accounts. However, we have rules which people agree to abide by when they sign up to Twitter. We will suspend accounts that, once reported to us, are found to be in breach of our rules. We encourage users to report an account for violation of the Twitter rules by using one of our report forms.'

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