News

Men Keep Harassing On-Air Female Journalists

An incident involving a Canadian journalist at a music festival is just the latest in a long and shitty trend.
August 8, 2017, 4:05pm
Screenshot via Radio-Canada footage

The "fuck her right in the pussy" trend taught the public what many women in media already knew: Some men think it's funny to harass women who are just trying to do their jobs.

Radio-Canada television reporter Valerie-Micaela Bain was working on Friday at the Quebec music festival Osheaga on air when a man she didn't know came in frame, kissing her without consent.

Bain remained composed, shoving the man out of the frame immediately and continuing her broadcast. Later, she wrote a response on social media:

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"It's unacceptable to kiss me just because you see me on the street or anywhere. It's not suddenly acceptable to kiss a woman just because she's reporting live on television."

Ironically, an incident in 2016 at Osheaga in which a woman was drugged sparked a conversation about sexual harassment and sexual assault of women at music festivals.

In 2015, another female reporter, with CBC, was non-consensually kissed on-camera at British Columbia music festival Squamish.

On Saturday, the man who non-consensually kissed Bain on-camera wrote her an apology:

"I wish I could find the best words to express the regret and the shame that I have been feeling following yesterday's events," he wrote. "I crossed the line with reprehensible conduct."

The man cited himself as a father of two. He said he wishes his children "the opportunity to live their lives in a world where they will not be afraid of the displaced gestures of men."

The apology isn't particularly surprising given the social media shitstorm surrounding the incident. As seen with a "fuck her right in the pussy" copycat incident that led to an Ontario man losing his job (he later got it back), men who harass women reporters on camera sometimes face repercussions.

As it stands, the "fuck her right in the pussy" (FHRITP) trend refuses to die. Another FHRITP incident occurred earlier this month in St. John's, Newfoundland. And in April a man was charged in relation to a separate similar incident in the same city.

Bain said in a Facebook post that what happened to her "adds to the kind of events women experience many times in their lives."

With the written apology from the man, she wrote, "For me this comes to an end."

"Today I would like to say to every person, man or woman, who gets touched without consenting: you have the right to say no," she wrote.

"I hope that this incident will remind us that we must not trivialize the aggressions as small as they are."