Why It's Hard to Protect Domestic-Violence Survivors Online

The Atlantic - Technology 

In 1994, the National Center for State Courts conducted a study of 285 women in three cities--Denver, Colorado; Washington, D.C.; and Wilmington, Delaware--who had obtained temporary or permanent orders of protection against their abusive male partners. More than half said that, in advance of the restraining order, they had been beaten or choked; a sizable majority reported being slapped, grabbed, shoved, or kicked; and 99 percent reported being intimidated through threats, stalking, or harassment. When they were interviewed one month after the instatement of the order, nearly three-quarters of the study participants said they felt better, felt safer, and had experienced an improvement in quality of life. Six months later, 85 percent of the women who were reached for a follow-up interview said their lives had improved, and 93 percent reported feeling better. Less than 10 percent said their abuser had physically stalked, re-abused, or showed up at their home.