A recent Tik Tok trend is rumored to encourage users to engage in acts of sexual misconduct on Saturday, April 24, declaring it “National Rape Day.” Tik Tok says it has not found recent videos promoting this event, and this is not the first time we have heard unsubstantiated claims about such a campaign.
Even if it is a hoax, messaging about a “holiday” celebrating violence and sexual assault is harmful to our community and to sexual violence survivors in particular. We want to acknowledge how incredibly frightening such rumors of an event like this can be. If you need to talk about how this trend or any sexual misconduct behaviors have affected you, reach out to an advocate in the Sexual Assault and Anti-Violence Information (SAAVI) office.
At Utah State University, we are a family of Upstanders actively stepping in and speaking up to create a university system that is free from sexual misconduct. Sexual assault, even as a joke, is never something to be taken lightly, normalized, or glorified. Encouraging our friends to participate in – or not discouraging them from participating in – sexual misconduct behaviors, for any reason, is never OK. Sexual assault is a crime that has lifelong impacts for far too many; it is not a joke.
We also want to take this opportunity to remind you that the university prohibits employees, students, and third parties from engaging in sexual misconduct. If you know of anyone participating in such prohibited behavior, you can file a report with the Title IX Coordinator and/or the USU Police Department.
Additionally, Tik Tok encourages users to report any content related to this “event.” Be sure to include screenshots or screen recordings in your report in case the user has already removed the video by the time a Tik Tok administrator reviews your report.
Title IX Coordinator, Office of Equity
Director, Sexual Assault & Anti-Violence Information Office
Earl “Torch” Morris
Chief, Utah State University Police Department