The dangers of being a woman online

Woman online
A young Cambodian woman uses her laptop in a local restaurant on April 9, 2014 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
Omar Havana/Getty Images

A growing number of female writers and journalists are being subjected to intense harassment online, often in response to seemingly mundane posts or articles. Even women who aren't professional writers or bloggers experience a kind of harassment online that is more graphic and violent in nature then the kind of trolling done to men.

Danielle Citron, professor at the University of Maryland's Carey School of Law and author of "Hate Crimes in Cyberspace," joined The Daily Circuit to talk about the impact of these attacks on women.

"It can be incredibly silencing for people," she said. "It drives people offline and it has a real cost, an economic and social cost for people. It's true that so often when victims talk back, it produces a much more furious response... That can be provocative to the mob and really costly for the victim."

New York magazine columnist Ann Friedman talked about what she does when she receives harassing tweets and emails:

Create a More Connected Minnesota

MPR News is your trusted resource for the news you need. With your support, MPR News brings accessible, courageous journalism and authentic conversation to everyone - free of paywalls and barriers. Your gift makes a difference.

On the show, Friedman referenced a recent This American Life episode where writer Lindy West interviewed one of her trolls. Listen here:

Learn more about online harassment:

Why Women Aren't Welcome on the Internet (Pacific Standard)

Women And Online Harassment (Diane Rehm Show)

What Male Writers Don't Understand About Cyberstalking (New Republic)

Mad Men: Inside the Men's Rights Movement--and the Army of Misogynists and Trolls It Spawned (Mother Jones)