A Sydney university student has publicly called out the man who verbally abused her online after she politely declined his unwanted sexual advances.
Ebonie Sanderson shared a series of vile messages she received from 28-year-old Tom, a man she had matched with on Tinder, to her Instagram this weekend, along with a beautiful photograph of herself naked.
Tom has since been fired from his job for his disgusting behaviour, after people began emailing his now-former place of employment, with prominent feminists like Clementine Ford and Nadia Bokody sharing Ebonie's post.
The messages are confronting and POPSUGAR Australia advises reader discretion due to their sexist and fatphobic language, as well as liberal swearing.
Ebonie warned her followers the post featured "CYBER BULLYING, HARASSMENT, SEXISM, FATPHOBIA AND MISOGYNISTIC BEHAVIOUR ALERT!!!"
"This is what happens when you say NO or call out a man for being disrespectful!!!," she began in a caption to the string of audio notes and text messages she received when she declined Tom's invitation to meet him at his Bondi home. She received the messages across platforms, from Tinder to Snapchat to Instagram.
In the messages, Tom called Ebonie an "ugly, fat, time wasting wh*re", "a fat f*ckin' pig", and a "dysgenic", and also employed slut-shaming and other abusive, misogynistic language.
"Anyway, look at my f*ckin' face," he continued in one voice note. "I don't struggle getting laid. I turned down a chick tonight. I choose not to masturbate. I choose not to c*m a lot." (Cool brag, bro.)
She called him out in her replies before blocking him, calling him sexist and fatphobic.
"You apparently earn yourself the right to get verbally abused and fat shamed on more than one platform," Ebonie continued in the caption to her post. "No I didn't 'ask for it' and yes, I'm entitled to change my mind and tell someone I'm not interested anymore because I feel uncomfortable and intimidated by ones aggressive and forceful nature."
Ebonie explained that the thing that was most stark about Tom's verbal abuse was that it was preceded by her feeling the need to soothe his ego as she rejected him, continuing to call him desirable and apologising for not being interested. "THAT IS A BIG PROBLEM", she added.
"If anyone comes across this man on dating apps or social media, please report him," she urged her followers. "All I can say is what a privileged misogynistic PIG."
She concluded her post with an empowered message of body positivity: "I will never change my weight for anyone else but MYSELF!!!"
Over 20 other women have since come forward to Ebonie to share their own experiences of abuse, harassment and even blackmail from Tom. One such woman, Erin Hinds, told her story to the Daily Mail, saying she too was sent derogatory messages calling her a "wh*re" and a "sl*t" when she told him she wasn't interested.
Ebonie pointed out to News.com.au that the "awful behaviour" of men like Tom is all too common. "The truth is, this happens more than we think. So many women resonated with this kind of sexist, abusive behaviour and it was really sad to discover just how real it is.
"I also think us women often cater for this behaviour far too often, we're so polite and let disrespectful men treat us this way without any consequences."
News.com.au has confirmed with Tinder that Tom's profile has been reported and taken down, in keeping with their anti-harassment policy.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, Ebonie explained that she decided to share her experience to hold Tom accountable for his actions. "I am really comfortable with my weight and initially I was like this doesn't matter but then in the end I realised an insult is an insult and I realised subconsciously I couldn't stop thinking about it.
"That was when I snapped and thought he can't get away with this and have no consequences whatsoever."
Tom's former boss told the publication that he was "shocked and disgusted" by his behaviour, which amounted to "an act of serious misconduct". "I have four daughters aged between 10 months and nine years old so that was one of the first things I thought about, and my blood boiled to imagine someone to ever speak to one of my little girls like that."
We're so impressed and inspired by Ebonie's strength in fending off his insults and encouraging her followers not to accept that kind of behaviour. It is repulsive and no woman should be on the receiving end of a sexist tirade like this for rejecting a man's advances. We all deserve so much better!
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