I am shocked at how there really has been no media and public attention given to the recent discovery of a Telegram group chat known as V2K which distributes photographs of women and girls from different social media platforms, without their consent, to its 35,000 members.
Of course, there have been stories carried here and there, but overall, people don’t seem to be interested in the story. It seems like everyone is still obsessing over how Anwar Ibrahim is going to show that he has the numbers when he meets the Yang di-Pertuan Agong next week.
Sure, the state of our government is pretty significant and I understand that we want to know more. However, the fact that a chat group like V2K exists (and it has been discovered that there are more groups like that locally) is also very worrying.
It also concerns me when our society does not give importance to an issue like this. Read the handful of reports talking about the group chat and notice that it is alleged that authorities such as the police are also among the members in the group.
According to women who have found that their pictures have been distributed in the group, they have even been threatened by the members for wanting to expose the group and warned not to make any reports. However, reports have been made.
This is disgusting on so many levels. In fact, many of these women found out that their pictures were in the group from people who are in the group. And they know these people personally! Or at the very least, they are friends of friends.
What does this mean? So these same people who are in these groups think that it is all okay until they see someone they know personally and only then it stops being okay? That doesn’t make it right, does it?
Are Malaysians a bunch of sick perverts who prey on unwilling and unknowing victims? And even when society finds out about it, it doesn’t look like anyone is outraged at all. It just seems to be like business as usual and everyone is saying, “Oh, it’s been reported. Move on then.”
Remember when math student Nur Fitri Azmeer Nordin (above), who was studying in London was arrested for being in possession of child pornography? He was deported to Malaysia and our authorities decided not to take any action on him. He seems to be continuing life like nothing happened.
I have two daughters and my elder one is fast approaching the age where social media starts becoming a part of her life. So sexual crime issues are a big concern in my life. Look, even if I didn’t have daughters, it would still be a big concern for me.
My wife and I do the best we can to educate her on the dangers online. She seems to understand the issues (as much as a nine-year-old can) and we are constantly encouraging and reminding her that she can, and should always, come to us if she has any questions or feels in doubt.
But if we live in a society that takes these issues and incidents lightly, then I am afraid that no matter what I do, it will never be enough to protect my children. And neither will anyone feel protected and safe in Malaysia.
I pray that the authorities give utmost priority to investigate the Telegram V2K group. An organised group of sexual predators like this is dangerous and could be a trigger for worse things to happen. I also think the public needs to be a bit more outraged at this.
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