The sexual assault allegations against music industry publicist Heathcliff Berru this week have inspired the creation of a Tumblr account that encourages women to write about their experiences with abuse and sexual harassment in the music business.
The creator of The Industry Ain’t Safe says she launched the site as a public platform for women to share their stories (without outing themselves) and express their concerns and fears. In the first blog post published on January 19, the woman behind the blog describes herself as “a young woman working in the indie music industry” and reveals that she’s “been a victim of sexual harassment and assault on multiple occasions.” She writes:
In light of several brave women coming forward and outing repeated offenders by name - and the outpouring of other women victimized by the same creeps but hitherto quiet about their experiences - I thought women could use an outlet to anonymously share their experiences and find support in each other without the risk of straining relationships, individually or corporately. Just as students at universities have taken naming & shaming into their own hands when school policies for sexual violence fall short of justice, I believe women can reclaim power from this inarguably patriarchal industry and let their voices be heard - without jeopardizing their jobs or companies.
In an interview with Broadly, the anonymous creator (she identifies herself as a record label employee based in Los Angeles) says the idea for the site came from a previous initiative by students at University of Chicago, who started a site to out rapists.
“I was inspired by University of Chicago students who took matters into their own hands and made (alleged) attackers’ names public when the university wouldn’t do so,” says the Industry Ain’t Safe founder. “We have all heard stories of sexual harassment, but as long as the harassers are not acknowledged for who they actually are, their behavior is likely to continue.”
So far, her Tumblr page has five posts in addition to the intro.
Besides being somewhat of a database of creeps, the site’s creator says the goal is for the site to serve as a coping tool.
“That can mean divulging all details as well as someone’s name, their role and where they’re located,” she says. “It can also mean candidly discussing the lack of support you find within your own work environment, or the internal struggles you face, or literally whatever else you want to voice but feel as though you can’t elsewhere.”
Contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Image via Tumblr