WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- A law student posted a YouTube video of herself pouring bleach on the crotches of men sitting with their legs far apart on public transport.
- Anna Dovgalyuk said that the solution will leave ‘an unwashable stain’ and claimed that it was an act of protest against manspreading, which she described as a ‘public disrespect for women.’
- The video went viral and had almost a million views within a day but drew outrage from men who pointed out that the targets of her protest were not infringing on anyone’s space.
A twenty-year-old woman has published a video of herself pouring bleach on offenders’ crotches as an act of protest against manspreading on the underground.
Anna Dovgalyuk, a law student in Russia’s city of St. Petersburg, posted a YouTube video of herself inflicting vengeance on men sitting with their legs far apart on public transport. In the said video, Dovgalyuk claimed that she had targeted over 70 people with her personal brand of justice.
She detailed in the clip that she used “30 liters of water, mixed with six liters of bleach. This solution… changes the color of clothes in a matter of minutes, leaving an unwashable stain.”
Dovgalyuk, who describes herself as an activist, described manspreading as “a disgusting phenomenon, which is being combated in many countries and which is still being hushed up in Russia.”
She explained on social media, “For me it is extremely important to draw people’s attention to this problem, provoking discussion, because public disrespect for women is shameful for a society.” She then thanked “friends, fully sharing my position” for helping her shoot the clip.
Within a day of its upload, the video garnered almost a million views. It did not receive positive attention, however, as it only had less than 2,000 likes, while an overwhelming 36,000 gave it a thumbs down.
The comments section on the video and on Dovgalyuk’s social media showed multiple calls from outraged men questioning her definition of manspreading as “gender aggression,” who argued that the targets of her protest were not actually infringing on anybody else’s space. Some even urged them to sue Dovgalyuk.
State news agency RIA Novosti confirmed that officers from the St. Petersburg and Leningrad region police had established Dovgalyuk’s identity and that “a check is underway.” It is still unknown if any of her targets has launched an official complaint with the authorities.
The video is not the first viral protest on Dovgalyuk’s channel — she had previously posted a similar protest on the St. Petersburg underground against upskirting. The video showed a young woman flashing her underwear in several of the city’s underground stations, and gathered almost four million views since its upload last October. The video has around 16,000 dislikes and 10,000 likes so far.