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France’s secret ‘boys club’ of journalists trolled women for years

PARIS: A secret "boys club" of reporters in France has been accused of harassing girls writers and feminists all over a near-decade lengthy campaign of on-line bullying. The closed Facebook workforce "League of LOL" taunted girls, cracked jokes about rape and used pornographic memes to attack its victims. Men have been also on occasion focused.

Liberation newspaper on Monday suspended two of its reporters, together with Vincent Glad, who based the crowd, after its personal Check-News fact-checking unit revealed the League of LOL's existence. "Shameful. The treatment inflicted on numerous young women or young men by a certain informal group known as League of LOL makes you feel sick. Harassment, insults, cruel hoaxes, a whole array of digital attacks were used by this group," Liberation's editor-in-chief Laurent Joffrin wrote in a piece of writing on Tuesday.

He mentioned Liberation would review social media policy for its reporters. His paper described the crowd as a macho "boys club". Others being disciplined include Liberation's on-line editor Alexandre Hervaud and David Doucet, the internet editor at song and tradition magazine Les Inrockuptibles."The idea behind the group was not to harass women. Only to have fun," Glad posted an apology on Twitter.

Glad mentioned he had distanced himself from the crowd 5 years in the past, but recognised he should have shut it down. "I created a monster that I lost control of," he mentioned.

Doucet tweeted that he have been a member of the crowd for two years: " I saw that certain people were being regularly targeted but I had no idea of the scale and the trauma suffered." Filmmaker Florence Procel mentioned she have been humiliated after the crowd recorded a hoax name providing her a job. She responded to Doucet's apology, tweeting: "Thank you, David. It's a good start. I will be able to start forgiving you... Your apologies were necessary... but not enough on their own."

France's junior minister for virtual affairs, Mounir Mahjoubi, branded the lads "losers". Hervaud wrote in his Twitter mea culpa: "I offer my apologies that are as sincere as they are late."

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