Zoom Trolls Target LGBTQ Students, Denounced as a 'Hate Crime'

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Monday October 26, 2020

Stock image
Stock image  (Source:Getty Images)

LGTBQ university students at Durham University in England were targeted by a group of 15 people who bombarded a Zoom meeting with sexual imagery and homophobic slurs, the BBC reports.

The meeting was hosted by a university LGBTQ group, reported U.K. newspaper the Telegraph. The abuse also included racial epithets, media reports said. The university is investigating the incident.

A joint statement from Durham LGBT+ Association, the Durham People of Colour Association and St. Mary's College LGBT+ Association condemned the attack, saying that "15-20 anonymous callers" had "hijacked" the meeting.

"These individuals took it upon themselves to shout a number of homophobic and racist slurs at the participants of this call and proceeded to share sexually explicit videos on their screens, as well as play extremely loud, disorientating music," the statement recounted, according to Chronicle Live.

"To hijack an event like this in such an aggressive and targeted way is nothing less than a hate crime," the statement said. Calling the incident a "coordinated attack," the statement went on to say that it was "a reminder of how routinely unsafe and unwelcome our community is made to feel."

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Assistant Arts Editor. He also reviews theater for WBUR. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.

Comments on Facebook