By Alexis A. Moore
Founder, Survivors in Action
Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg’s stalking case can be a triumph for stalking victims around the world.
Stalking victims and advocates believe that the key needed to bring about real change in the stalking victim resource system lies in Mark Zuckerberg’s hands. Not that we wanted him to suffer the horrors that we’ve suffered. No, we hope his stalking ordeal ends quickly and happily. But this talented social-networking giant has the power, the technology and the international exposure needed to unlock the gates of reform. He is the key to help us bring real attention to the cyberstalking epidemic and the tens of thousands of victims who suffer each year.
I am sending out this virtual SOS and hoping that he hears our signal. Welcome to our club, Mark Zuckerberg.
We have hundreds of thousands of members, so unfortunately it’s not a very exclusive club. Our members come from all walks of life though, women and men, boys and girls, rich, poor, famous and unknown. As you’ve learned, there are lots of awful dues to pay, and membership is never any fun. I know, you never wanted to join and, truly, we are sorry that you are here. But without a doubt, you are now a card-carrying member of the Stalking Victims Club.
I am president of Survivors in Action, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting victims of cyberstalking and physical stalking. As a cyberstalking expert and advocate, I work every day to convince our legislators, law enforcement and justice communities that stalking– both online and offline– is a real and dangerous threat for all Americans. This crime is growing extremely quickly, but the victims often receive very little support until it’s too late.
We need help to fight back. We need the online leaders to develop new safety programs that help us identify and stop cyber assaults. We need high-profile advocates, like you, to bring attention to the situation and help us convince legislators that more must be done to protect the public. We need new laws to protect us and more funds to train law enforcement and court personnel, create stalking victim resource centers, and prosecute criminals. Most importantly, we need to teach victims that there are ways that they can fight back, stop the attacks and rebuild their lives.
With your understanding of 21st Century technologies, knowledge of online networking and communities, and the Facebook revolution behind you, you pack a double punch. Your social networking status is exactly what we need to take the fight to the next level.
So, Mark, if you are reading this, I am ready, willing, and able to help. My organization has hundreds of volunteers, and we help tens of thousands of cyberstalking and physical stalking victims each year. But there is so much more to be done. Please, Mark, join us in our fight to ensure that no stalking victim is left behind.