Prominent Icelandic Feminist Accused Of Cyber-Bullying - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Prominent Icelandic Feminist Accused Of Cyber-Bullying

Published February 28, 2014

Singer Hafdís Huld accused prominent feminist and anti cyber-bullying activist Hildur Lilliendahl of posting death threats and making rape jokes about her under the handle NöttZ, reports RÚV.

In an interview with Kastljós last night, Hafdís Huld opened up about her experience with cyber-bullying in 2009 and 2010. At the time the singer was promoting her album Synchronised Swimmers and the single, Kónguló was gaining popularity.

Hafdís said that her sister alerted her to a number of “distasteful” comments being made about her on Icelandic website bland.is.

Once she checked the site, Hafdís stumbled upon a number of disturbing remarks, “A thread started and people were saying ‘Who wants to go murder’ and ‘You know where she lives?’” said Hafdís about the remarks which triggered her to investigate who posted the comments about murdering her, “I found out that [the user NöttZ] was a woman called Hildur Lilliendahl.”

RÚV uncovered that in another thread the user NöttZ a.k.a Hildur Lilliendal had posted a message that read:

“Hahaha hookers, who just sent me a sms?”

When other users asked what the sms said, NöttZ replied:

“Would you rape Hafdís Huld with a tent peg?”

In 2010, in a thread called Kónguló, NöttZ posted once again:

“Sorry I thought this thread was about Hafdís Huld.”

Later NöttZ added:

“Hahaha. Sorry. As we all know [Kónguló] is the worst song ever composed. I suspect [Hafdís Huld] might be mentally retarded.”

“People can have whatever opinion they want about art,” said Hafdís in the interview with RÚV, “but there’s a line before you go into threats and personal attacks and at first I was just shocked. And of course your feelings get hurt, your feelings get hurt over the fact that some person, especially a person you’ve never met in your life, wants something bad to happen to you or in this case to make a joke out of something, like there’s something funny about something as horrific as rape.”

Hafdís said she felt compelled to contact police after she saw on the news in 2012, that Hildur Lilliendahl received a commendation from Stígamót, the Education and Counseling Center for Survivors of Sexual Abuse and Violence, for her work on Karlar Sem Hata Konur and her activism against cyber-bullying and misogyny.

However too long a time had passed since the comments were made on bland.is for the police to take any action.

“I would have contacted the police a lot sooner if I had known that the person bullying me on the internet and calling me retarded and threatening violence against me was a [spokesperson] fighting against violence on the internet,” said Hafdís.

Hildur Lilliendahl has responded to the accusations and admitted to using the handle NöttZ on bland.is in the time cited by Hafdís Huld.

However, Hildur said that the remarks about murder were made by her husband who at the time had access to her account and he has confirmed that he posted those remarks on the thread.

In regards to the sms about raping Hafdís with a tent peg, Hildur said that she was in that case referring to a message sent to her. In other words, the sms was not written by her but sent to her by someone else.

Lastly, Hildur said that she most likely made the remark about Hafdís being mentally disabled.

“I am very ashamed of having said that and I ask for forgiveness. Of course you are not supposed to talk about other people in that way and I have learned that lesson through my own fight against cyber-bullying in the time that has passed since [2009],” said Hildur.

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