Shehad Jihad delivers digital safety guidance to women in Jordan.

Salam@ Digital Advocate Shehad Jihad delivers digital safety guidance to women in Jordan. (Salam@, 2020).

Spotlighting Digital Violence Against Female Journalists

The Jordan Times recently interviewed Shahed Jihad, a Jordanian journalist and member of a trailblazing Foundation-supported team of female digital safety trainers.

Internet-based tools are opening new doors for women around the world. But they’re also creating a new platform for gender-based violence (GBV)—and the effects can be uniquely harsh for female journalists. That’s a message Jordanian journalist Shahed Jihad recently shared in an interview with The Jordan Times.  

Read the article:
Digital violence against female journalists on the rise
 (The Jordan Times | July 4, 2022)

“Female journalists are women with influence and that is why they become targets of digital violence and start to experience intimidation online in relation to their work,” Shahed told the Times. Online GBV can take many forms: hacking, harassment, doxxing, blackmail, shaming, and beyond. Journalists are especially vulnerable because so much of their daily work is—increasingly—online. Online violence is devastating for people’s mental health and sense of personal and family safety. And as Shahed explains, the fear it instills can lead female journalists to limit themselves and self-censor. 

Shahed Jihad is not only a journalist. She’s also a founding member of a trailblazing Foundation-supported team of “digital advocates” helping ordinary women protect themselves online. 

That ball started rolling in November 2019. That’s when our Salam@ team pulled together a special cohort of women from diverse backgrounds to learn about digital safety. Shahed was there from day 1. By February 2020, they went “live” as the MENA region’s first all-female group of digital safety trainers. Ever since, they’ve been supporting women and girls—more than 20,000 and counting—through training, technical support, digital clinics and awareness-raising sessions. 

This work also gives the team a front-row seat to the realities of online GBV. From the women they support, they’re always learning about the shifting tactics and toxic effects of online violence. Their insight is helping Salam@ develop new approaches to helping women stay safe. They’re also helping Salam@ continue to shape conversations about GBV. And of course, that’s exactly what we see Shahed doing here in her interview with The Jordan Times. 

Read the article:
Digital violence against female journalists on the rise (The Jordan Times | July 4, 2022)
featuring Shahed Jihad and Salam@ National Coordinator Lina Momani

Did you know…? Salam@ has been featured 400+ times in Arabic and English-language media. With a focus on women, youth and civil society organizations, the team is working with local partners across the Middle East and North Africa to help people boost their digital resilience. Learn more:  Salam@ – Digital Safety for Women and Youth (MENA)