Hollaback! is a non-profit involved in the movement to end street based gender violence through mobile technology. By using mobile phone apps and crowd sourcing technology, hollaback provides a safe virtual space when folks can share their experiences of gender violence and have it plotted on an interactive map.
Street harassment is a culturally acceptable form of gender violence. Hollaback tracks the violence and gives a folks a forum to break the silence around street harassment while actively resisting it.
Hollaback started as a small organization in 2005 founded by three men and four women. After hearing the women’s stories of street harassment the men realized how vastly different their experiences were. Also around this time, a New York woman reclaimed her power when she was harassed at a subway station. A local restaurant owner was masturbating publically in front of her, an image she captured with her cell phone and posted to flickr. The story later broke in the mainstream media and incited discussion. Inspired by her story, the seven youth created a blog for folks to share their experiences.
The website is now leading the movement and a key organization in the International Week Against Street Harassment.
The site has been able to track incidents of street harassment around the world in 45 cities in 16 countries. It’s been translated into nine languages. The movement doesn’t just cite violence, but also celebrates bystanders who take action. On their map a green dot represents a story from someone who saw street harassment and did something about it. The campaign “I got your back” builds solidarity and awareness.