Though Reddit has its merits, it also has places that act as the creepy back alleys of the Internet — in some of the more insidious forums, it can be dark, clammy, and full of creeps. Over the past few years, controversial (aka terrible) forums have been deleted, like r/jailbait, in which users posted suggestive photos of teenage girls.
Another creepy forum, aptly named r/creepshots, gathered surreptitiously-taken upskirt photos of women, and was taken down last year. Now, these Redditors have found an entirely new way to be terrible: stealing photos of women showing cleavage from Facebook. Though, the “cleavage” in r/FacebookCleavage isn’t necessarily a strict rule. According to the forum’s description, “any sexy pic will do.”
As of now, there are over 16,000 subscribers to r/FacebookCleavage. The descriptions and comments on the photos are as gross as you’d expect, ranging from the mildly misogynist to the overtly rapey. One post (which I won’t link to) showed three young women in bikinis with the description “Fuck Kill Marry?” Swell, guys.
The “rules” of the forum clearly state that users shouldn’t post photos of underage girls, but the Daily Dot points out that it won’t be difficult for creepy users to find the identities of women posted in the forum. “A quick reverse-image search along with the name of a college on a hoodie, for instance, can lead to the social media profiles of women on the subreddit.” Reddit’s moderators can choose to take down an image if it includes identifying information or appears to be of an underage girl, but they can’t prevent them from being posted altogether.
How terrifying is it to think that some troll you had physics class with during sophomore year could be digging through your Facebook photos to find the “suggestive” poses and share them with his troll friends and the rest of the Internet? Many of these photos aren’t even of scantily clad women. Some are no-makeup selfies. Others are shots from Halloween parties.
Whatever the photos depict, they certainly aren’t the property of creepy Reddit dweebs who are looking for spank bank material. At The Gloss, Hayley Hoover makes the argument that the users of this forum aren’t just interested in seeing hot chicks — it’s more insidious than that. “They’re not here to look at beautiful people — there are millions of pictures of beautiful people available online. They’re here for the thrill of creeping on a hot body who didn’t give them permission to look.”
I think she’s right. These types of spaces attract pervs, and even the “normal, nice guys” who view it are complicit in the theft of these images. They’re also ogling women amongst peers who are totally willing to steal photos from their friends so that random dudes on the Internet can talk about raping them.