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After a Woman in India was Raped and Murdered, Her Name Trended on Porn Sites

By March 2, 2020 No Comments

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Cover image credit to Gulf News. 4-minute read. Post originally published in December 2019.
TRIGGER WARNING

In late 2019, after Priyanka Reddy endured a violent four-man gang-rape where the men took turns raping 27-year-old, she was suffocated to death and her body was carried by truck to be dumped and burned.

The body of the young veterinary doctor was found, burned beyond recognition, under a bridge on the outskirts of a city in southern India.

According to police, the four men had trapped the woman by deflating one of the tires on her motorized scooter. When she attempted to pick up her parked vehicle and return home, that’s when they struck.

Many have been quick to call out the four men’s actions.

Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao, the head of government for the Indian state where this all happened, advised officials to ensure swift justice for the accused. Protesters across the country went one step further than Chief Minister Rao, instead requesting the death penalty be given to all four men. This large-scale public outcry signals that some people are really waking up to the realities of violence against women.

Related: Pornhub Reportedly Profits From Nonconsensual Videos And Real Rape Tapes—Here Are The Latest Examples

Others were less willing to condemn the accused. In fact, some even exhibited public support for their crimes.

Following the Indian government’s response to Reddy’s case, Indian filmmaker Daniel Shravan responded with an Instagram rant that criticized the government for “frightening rapists.”

According to Shravan, “The government should encourage and legalize rape without violence,” and, “Girls above 18 should be educated on rapes and not deny the sexual desires of men.” He also went on to say that, “Rapists are not finding a way to get their bodily sexual desires [met],” which is compelling them to kill.

As horrific as this all is, it actually gets worse. Let us explain.

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Searches for “Priyanka Reddy” show up on the world’s most popular porn site

Although there is no evidence Reddy’s brutal gang-rape was recorded, her name still became the number-one trending search on Indian and Pakistani versions of one of the world’s most popular porn sites the weekend after the rape was committed.

In other words, on a site that gets 4.4 billion page views per month, there was enough of a demand for videos of Reddy’s brutal rape and murder to rank the search trend above any other searches that weekend. The demand was so strong, porn producers fabricated and posted scripted versions of the crime.

And—get this—it’s not unheard of for people to look this kind of stuff up.

We wish this weren’t true, but in India, rape and murder attacks are commonly filmed and posted online or sold on USB sticks at local markets for cheap. With that being said, it wouldn’t be abnormal for someone to attempt to search and watch real rape and murder videos. In fact, our website FightTheNewDrug.org gets site visitors all the time who Google search “real rape tapes” before landing on our site.

Related: Their Private Photos Were Shared Non-Consensually To Pornhub, And Now These Women Are Fighting Back

Reddy’s story is slightly different than most other rape stories in that it was widely publicized soon after it happened, which led to widespread social media outcry and the launch of a petition to have her name removed from the porn site’s video trends.

However, for many survivors and victims who really do have recorded evidence of their rapes on Pornhub and elsewhere, there are no media outlets sharing their stories with the world, no petitions, nor any social media outcry. They simply do not have the luxury of getting the videos of their violation removed.

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Porn sites profit greatly from violent porn

Consider the demand to see the (nonexistent) rape video of Reddy. If that’s what consumers want, that’s the content the site needs to supply if they want to keep their consumer base happy and not leave it to another porn site to do so.

Related: Pornhub Refused To Remove Videos Of This Minor’s Sexual Assault—Until She Posed As Her Own Lawyer

In this way, the big porn sites profit from the suffering of real people. And, even when the porn isn’t directly connected to a sex crime—take, for example, all the fake videos that were posted in response to what occurred with Reddy—they are still profiting from people’s fantasies regarding real, painful life experiences of others. How is this acceptable?

Porn scenarios normalize the most brutal of sex crimes

A young secretary made a little mistake and gets raped and killed by the office crew

Couple rape & kill girl & rape the corpse again

Watch asian girl knocked out and raped and killed

The above includes a list of just a couple of quick porn site search results that essentially portray scripted versions of the violence Reddy endured. The gruesome titles give us a firsthand look of how porn normalize, fetishizes, and profits from the most brutal of sex crimes.

Related: “You’re Gonna Be A Star”: The Day I Was Drugged And Raped On A Porn Set

Research exhibits that the media people consume has a strong impact on them. While that impact isn’t necessarily unhealthy when someone is watching, say, a documentary that discusses the strength of an alligator’s jaws, it definitely can become unhealthy when someone consumes rape porn and associates someone else’s pain with their own arousal.

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Rape culture and porn are intricately connected

When videos that depict what Reddy faced and worse are plentiful and readily available, when studies show that societal acceptance of porn has caused a seismic shift in the acceptance of rape culture and can lead to violent sexual behavior, when porn consumers are more likely to believe that women secretly enjoy being raped and are less empathetic to survivors of sexual violence, it becomes clear how massive the connection between rape culture and porn truly is.

Related: Hundreds Of Women Who Agreed To Model Swimsuits Were Forced To Perform In Porn, Lawsuit Alleges

We cannot properly combat sex crimes and rape culture without fighting porn, too.

We refuse to accept how porn reinforces toxic and abusive ideals, and slows lasting progress in the fight against violent sex crimes and rape culture.

It is for those like Reddy that we must speak out about how porn fuels the existing issue of sexual violence. It ends with us. Will you join us?

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