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“Hit The Bitch” Game Is Supposed to Deter Domestic Violence??

“Hit The Bitch” Game Is Supposed to Deter Domestic Violence??

It seems illogical, right, that a website titled “Hit the Bitch” would be claim to be anti-violent?  Or that this website would invite the viewer to use a mouse-powered (and male-looking) hand to repeatedly smack and slap a young woman, and then try at the end to give “useful” information about intimate-partner violence?  Well, if this sounds unbelievable (it did to me), you’d better go to www.hitthebitch.dk and see for yourself.  It’s pretty sickening.

The website was set up by a Danish anti-violence advocacy group, and ostensibly has a good message: making clear to men that domestic violence is unacceptable.  But the method that it uses is so offensive, misguided, and disgusting that the message gets completely lost within sexualized violence and abuse.  In the game, you (the viewer) play a disembodied (white male) hand.  The viewer guides the hand to the face of a young woman who is speaking (in Danish) throughout the interaction, and tries to smack the young woman as hard as she or he can.  With each hit, there is a loud (and extremely realistic) slapping noise, and the young woman reels back.  With each smack, the meter at the top of the screen slowly creeps from “100% pussy” to “100% gangsta.”  After about 10 hits, the woman finally falls to the ground, and the viewer is greeted with a “100% idiot” banner, statistics, and some loud scolding (in Danish).

We’re late on this – it was appearing all over the feminist blogosphere yesterday – so I’m just going to list a few of the most obvious problems with this game and then turn it over to you.  It was almost impossible for me to finish the game because the idea of even virtually beating someone was really difficult for me, but I can’t imagine that if I could stomach the idea of virtually smacking a woman around, a mild rebuke at the end (or being called “100% idiot”) would help drive the message home that this is actually wrong, it’s not fun, and it’s not a game.

Writers at Jezebel point out how sexualized the violence is; Jill at Feministe writes, “color me unconvinced” that spending 10 minutes virtually hitting a woman and then being called an idiot will convey the message that hitting a woman is bad; Vanessa at Feministing says, “this is straight up glorifying violence against women.”

I lived in Denmark for a while when I was younger, but don’t speak Danish any more – I caught a few words, but I wish I could tell what the young woman was saying as the viewer beats her up.  Is she rebuking him/her?  Inciting him/her?  I think that’s an important part of the equation.  What do her words suggest about when domestic violence is seen by abusers as “acceptable”?

What do you think?  Could this deter anyone from inflicting domestic violence?  Or by rewarding the viewer for beating up a woman, is it actually reinforcing the notion that intimate-partner violence is fun?

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Photo from www.hitthebitch.dk.

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96 comments

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3:19PM PDT on Jun 29, 2012

What my girlfriend had sex with my best friend??Omg she totally deserve it.HIT THE BITCH!

3:14PM PDT on Jun 29, 2012

Wow..How can people hate this game..Anyone complain about Call of duty??Nah..Its only a game..So calm down.And i totally want to try this game look hilarious.

3:25AM PDT on May 24, 2010

This is so retarded...I can't even say it glorifies violence, I just find the whole idea to be at the height of idiocy...

2:00AM PST on Dec 10, 2009

The title of the website is really misogynist.

6:38PM PST on Nov 30, 2009

No man should put there hands on any woman!!

10:23AM PST on Nov 25, 2009

i have an online buddy who is from denmark that thinks this is horrible.

11:29AM PST on Nov 24, 2009

the girl in the game is saying that she had a good evening and that ofcourse she dansed with somebody, and that you; the hand, doesnt have a say in who she dances with. After the first hit she says different things: Cant you hit any harder, Do You feel strong now, Dont call me a whore etc, etc..

When she goes down the voice says: Idiot, it isnt gangsta to hit women, you lost the game the first time you raised your hand. It is never allright to hit, there is no excuse.

I hope the tanslation helps.

On a more personal level. I belive the "game" does what it was intended to do. It reaches the young people through a media they use every day. It catches their attention and lures them in to give the moral in the ind. T
The "game" only last a few minutes and afterwards those who are appalled wont play it again, and have hopefully learned something. As for those who keep playing it "cause its just so cool" well, they were a lost cause before they played it anyway...

11:57PM PST on Nov 23, 2009

I just got the youtube version of the game since the site will no longer allow visitors from other countries aside from Denmark..No doubt, this is a contradictory message. I also observed comments about the game from other people saying how fun it was. wow.

10:40AM PST on Nov 23, 2009

The idea of this game is just horrible!

8:11AM PST on Nov 23, 2009

sorry! I didn't proofread carefully, so here's my revised first sentence with the addition to clarify my comments placed within double asterisks:
"While I think the INTENT of the website **is laudible**, if I understand this properly, to reduce the tendency and incidence of domestic abuse, I think there was little critical thought about the MEANS..."

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