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S’porean woman experiences voyeurism incident, netizens say she deserves it

Singaporean Daisy Mitchell, (@Daizamazze on Tiktok) never anticipated her journey home to be disrupted. Daisy was at Tanah Merah MRT station at approximately 10pm at night when she suspected a man had followed and taken lewd photographs of her. She caught him red-handed mid-capture and confronted him.

The man’s instincts were to pretend to call a friend, despite his phone screen showing his photos. Firmly, Daisy demanded he delete her images and reported the incident to the SMRT staff at the control station.

“I was stunned, and shocked. I was in disbelief that it was really happening. What really shook me was how many photos he took (of me). I thought it was a video at first but ended up being several photos of me getting up and off of the train.”

Daisy shadowed the man trying to look over his shoulder, to see what was on his phone.

“When I saw that he was swiping through the pictures of me, I called out for him to delete them. He ignored me and kept walking away. I followed him and kept shouting until we were on the stairs and I was right next to him,” she continued.

Throughout the confrontation, she had simultaneously recorded a video and uploaded it to social media platform TikTok. Her intention for posting it was to encourage others who might have faced similar incidents to be brave and stand their ground.

Credit: Daizamazze, TikTok

The video has since garnered over 1.4 million views since it was uploaded on 28 February 2023.

With the reach it generated, the incident brought about mixed opinions in her comments section.

There were netizens who came forward to share their own unfortunate experiences.

Photo: Daizamazze, TikTok

The documented video seemed to provide a safe space for others to share their own stories. However, alongside the netizens who commended Daisy for her courageousness in confronting the perpetrator, there were others who accused her of “asking for it”.

Not about what you wear

Photo: Daizamazze, TikTok

Daisy was on the way home clad in a simple white t-shirt, leggings, and sneakers. The most common question in her comments was: why was she not dressed “appropriately”, hence attributing the voyeurism incident to her choice of outfit.

Photo: Daizamazze, TikTok

Another user - whose account has since been deactivated - also referenced Daisy’s Instagram account, stating that her bikini images were already suggestive, hence she shouldn’t be affected by the incident.

Photo: Daizamazze, TikTok

Some even told her she should be honoured that the men took unconsented images of her. Another pulled in her reputation as an influencer, and claimed she was overreacting for the clout.

Photo: Daizamazze, TikTok

Although many comments quickly stepped in to defend Daisy, a survey conducted by Ipsos in 2019 targeted at attitudes on gender equality, sexual harassment and the #MeToo movement found that 45% of over 1,000 respondents agreed that “women who wear revealing clothes should not complain if men make comments about their appearance”.

We break down the term ‘appropriate clothing’; what deems an outfit appropriate, and who is it appropriate for. Formal workplaces have a formal dress code. Other industries might lean more toward smart casual or a “casual, but no slippers” attire. In rare cases, comfort is prioritised and even pyjamas are accepted. Despite these attire guides, voyeurism still occurs even in the workplace.

According to an article by CNA, from January to September 2022, 321 cases of voyeurism were reported to police in Singapore. In 2021, 467 reports were made, and in 2020, 394 cases.

Such crimes were found prevalent across MRT stations, shopping malls and even within workplaces.

The comments that call out Daisy’s “inappropriate dressing” breed a victim-blaming mentality, and imply that victims should be responsible for such incidents when they occur.

Photo: Junie Foo, CNA

As the world changes, our mindset has to change with it. It should no longer be about ‘I’ or ‘women’ versus ‘men’.

Everyone deserves to be valued on equal ground. Just as much as we encourage society to express themselves and embrace their individuality, everyone should also be taught the importance of consent and respect.

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