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They Said #MeToo. Now They Are Being Sued

来源:纽约时报    2019-12-26 06:38

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        In a small courtroom in Beijing, supporters of Wang Qi huddled together, awaiting the start of China’s first #MeToo trial. Ms. Wang had accused her former boss of sexually harassing her.        在北京一间小小的法庭上,王琪的支持者们挤在一起,等待着中国第一场“#我也是”审判的开始。王琪指控她的前上司性骚扰。
        But it wasn’t Ms. Wang’s former boss who was on trial. It was Ms. Wang herself.        但接受审判的并不是王琪的前上司。而是王琪自己。
        Zhou Fei, a top official at the China branch of the World Wildlife Fund, sued Ms. Wang in August 2018, accusing his former employee of defaming him when she wrote in a social media post that he forcibly kissed her during a work trip. If Ms. Wang loses the case, she has to apologize to Mr. Zhou online and pay him $1,400.        周非是世界自然基金会(World Wildlife Fund)中国区高层官员。在王琪于社交媒体写下他在一次出差过程中强吻她的经历后,周非在2018年8月以侵犯名誉权起诉了他的这名前员工。如果王琪输了这场官司,她将需要在网上向周非道歉,并赔偿他1400美元(1万元人民币)。
        “If one doesn’t make a sacrifice for the protection of women’s rights and interests,” she said last year, before her lawyer warned her she risked further defamation claims by talking, “there will definitely be no progress.”        “关于女性权益保护这个事情,没有人牺牲一定是推动不了的,”她去年说,她的律师随即警告她,发表言论可能会遭到进一步的诽谤指控。
        In China, the accuser can quickly become the accused. At least six men publicly accused of sexual assault or harassment have sued their accusers, or people who have publicized those accusers’ claims, for defamation in the past year.        在中国,指控者很快可以变成被指控者。过去一年中,至少有六名被公开指责性侵或性骚扰的男性对指控他们或传播指控者诉求的人发起了诽谤诉讼。
        In fact, of just 34 lawsuits filed in China between 2010 and 2017 related to sexual harassment in the workplace, 19 of those were filed by the accused perpetrators, according to the Beijing Yuanzhong Gender Development Center, an advocacy group. More than half were filed by accused harassers against their employers, citing unfair dismissal or harm to their reputations. In one case, a victim had to compensate her harasser for damaging his eardrum after she slapped him. Women who said they had been harassed filed only two of the lawsuits.        倡导组织北京源众性别发展中心称,实际上在2010至2017年间,在中国提起的仅34起有关工作场所性骚扰的诉讼中,有19起是由被指控的犯事者提起的。其中被指控的骚扰者对雇主的起诉超过一半,理由是不公平的解雇或对其声誉的损害。在一个案例中,一名受害人不得不赔偿她的骚扰者,因为她打了他一耳光后令其鼓膜受损。仅有两项诉讼由声称受到骚扰的女性提起。
        As the #MeToo movement has spread, men in the United States, France, India and elsewhere have turned to the courts, sometimes successfully arguing that they had been defamed by their accusers or by the media. The most famous example might be Geoffrey Rush, the Australian actor, who in April won at least $608,000 from The Daily Telegraph newspaper in Australia.        随着“#我也是”运动的蔓延,美国、法国、印度和其他地方的男性都转向法院求助,有时成功地辩称他们遭到了指控者或媒体的诽谤。最著名的例子也许是澳大利亚演员杰弗里·拉什(Geoffrey Rush)4月从澳大利亚《每日电讯报》那里获得了至少60.8万美元的赔偿。
        But #MeToo activists say China represents an extreme example of using courts to suppress accusations. That can make women think twice about going public in a highly patriarchal society that often shames them for speaking out, the activists say.        然而“#我也是”活动人士说,中国代表了利用法院压制指控的极端案例。活动人士说,这会使女性不敢在一个高度男权的社会里公开指控,她们的大声疾呼常常会被人羞辱。
        The government has enacted laws banning sexual harassment but does not define the term. Enforcement is poor. Defamation laws are stacked in favor of plaintiffs, with a greater burden of proof falling on the victim. If she fails, she is presumed to be “subjectively at fault.”        政府已经颁布了禁止性骚扰的法律,但并未给出定义。执法情况很糟。诽谤法有利于原告,而更大的举证责任落在了受害者身上。如果没能举证,会被认为是存在“主观过错”。
        Victims are often pressured to stay silent, said Li Ying, a lawyer and the director of the Yuanzhong Gender Development Center. “Our entire society is still biased, and stigmatizes victims of sexual harassment,” she said.        源众性别发展中心负责人、律师李莹说,受害者经常被迫保持沉默。她说:“我们整个的社会对性骚扰受害人还是有偏见,也有污名化的。”
        By some measures, though, the #MeToo movement has changed China. It inspired dozens of women to demand investigations into bosses, teachers and co-workers. In August, the government updated its civil code to increase obligations on Chinese employers to prevent sexual harassment.        不过,“#我也是”运动在某种方式上改变了中国。它鼓舞了数十名女性要求对上司、老师和同事进行调查。8月,政府更新了民法以增加中国雇主防止性骚扰的责任。
        But Beijing suppresses #MeToo discussions online because it fears social movements it does not control. Online allegations of sexual misconduct were one of the most heavily censored topics on the messaging platform WeChat in 2018, according to WeChatscope, a research project at the University of Hong Kong. The hashtags #MeToo and #Woyeshi (“me too” in Chinese) are banned on the Chinese internet.        但是由于担心会引发无法控制的社会运动,北京政府在压制“#我也是”的网络讨论。根据香港大学的研究项目WeChatscope的数据,对不正当性行为的网上指控是即时消息平台微信上受审查最严重的话题之一。话题标签“#MeToo”和“#我也是”在中国互联网上被禁。
        Perhaps the most famous example of a #MeToo defamation suit in China is the one filed by Richard Liu, the e-commerce tycoon. Mr. Liu, founder of online retailer JD.com, is suing two Chinese bloggers for commenting on allegations that he raped a Chinese student at the University of Minnesota last year after a business dinner. Mr. Liu, who has not been charged with a crime, is demanding $436,000 plus legal expenses and an apology.        中国最著名的“#我也是”诽谤诉讼案莫过于刘强东起诉两名中国博主对他的强奸指控的评论。刘强东是电子商务巨头、在线零售商京东(JD.com)的创始人,被指控在去年的一次商务晚宴后强奸明尼苏达大学的一名中国学生。未受到控罪的刘强东要求赔偿43.6万美元以及法务费用,并做出道歉。
        Last year, Zhou Xiaoxuan became the face of China’s #MeToo movement after she accused Zhu Jun, an anchor for China Central Television, the state-run broadcaster, of sexually assaulting her in 2014. Last year, Mr. Zhu filed a defamation suit against Ms. Zhou describing her accusations as “blatantly fabricated and viciously spread” and seeking about $95,000 in damages.        去年,弦子(Zhou Xiaoxuan)指控中国国有广播机构中央电视台的主持人朱军在2014年对她进行性侵犯,随即成为中国“#我也是”运动的代言人。去年,朱军对弦子提起诽谤诉讼,称她的指控是“公然捏造和恶意传播”,并要求赔偿约9.5万美元的损失。
        Ms. Zhou countersued, claiming damage to her dignity.        弦子提出反诉,要求赔偿对人格尊严的损害。
        In July, a court in the city of Shenzhen heard a defamation case filed by Xu Gang, a former professor at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, against the Wesleyan University professor Wang Ao after Dr. Wang posted on social media that several students had been sexually assaulted by Dr. Xu. A verdict is pending. Dr. Xu has denied the allegations, which his lawyer has said are defamatory.         7月,深圳市一家法院审理了前伊利诺伊大学厄巴纳-香槟分校(University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign)教授徐钢对卫斯理大学(Wesleyan University)教授王敖的诽谤起诉,此前王敖在社交媒体上发布信息称几名学生被徐钢性侵。法院尚未做出裁决。徐钢否认了这些指控,他的律师说这些指控属诽谤。
        In September, Dr. Wang and two of Dr. Xu’s former students filed a lawsuit in Illinois, accusing Dr. Xu of rape, sexual abuse and assault.         9月,王敖和徐钢的两名前学生在伊利诺伊州提起诉讼,指控徐钢强奸、性虐待和性侵犯。
        The following month, the Chinese court sided with Dr. Xu and awarded him more than $14,000, said Dr. Wang, who said he would appeal.         王敖说,翌月中国法庭站在了徐钢一方,判给他逾1.4万美元赔偿。他说他会上诉。
        Incidents often occurred a long time ago and victims often do not retain the evidence, making their cases difficult to prove.         事件往往发生在很久以前,受害人往往没有保留证据,因此案件难以证实。
        Belinda He, who nine years ago was a 21-year-old intern at a weekly Chinese newsmagazine, accused an older colleague of forcibly kissing her and taking off her clothes in a hotel room. Still, she did not make her allegations public for a long time.         贝琳达·何(Belinda He)9年前在一家中国的新闻周刊杂志做实习生,时年21岁,她指控一名年长的同事强吻她并在酒店房间脱了她的衣服。尽管如此,她很长一段时间内都没有公开指控。
        When Zou Sicong, another former journalist, heard Ms. He’s account, he was outraged. Ms. He wrote an article about the incident and passed it to Mr. Zou, who posted it on his personal WeChat account in August 2018. The article named the accused, Deng Fei, the chief correspondent of the magazine. Ms. He was identified as “Lady C.”         另一位前记者邹思聪听了她的陈述后很愤怒。贝琳达·何写了一篇关于该事件的文章,并交给了邹思聪,邹思聪于2018年8月将其发布在个人微信公众号上。文章指明被指控者为该杂志的首席记者邓飞。文中称贝琳达·何为“C女士”。
        Three months later, Mr. Deng sued Mr. Zou for defamation. In August, Ms. He received a court notice that Mr. Deng had also decided to sue her on the same charge.         三个月后,邓飞起诉邹思聪诽谤。8月,贝琳达·何收到法院通知,称邓飞决定也以同样的罪名起诉她。
        Mr. Zou said he wants to help women like Ms. He seek justice and to defend his freedom of speech.         邹思聪说,他想帮助像贝琳达·何这样的女性伸张正义,并捍卫他的言论自由。
        “It’s part of my value system and I’m willing to pay the price for it,” he said.
        Many of those difficulties have played out in the defamation trial of Ms. Wang, the former W.W.F. employee. Women’s rights activists call it the first trial over sexual harassment since the #MeToo movement emerged in China. A verdict is pending.         许多类似的困难,在世界自然基金会前雇员王琪的诽谤审判中也已显现出来。女权活动人士称这是自“#我也是”运动在中国出现以来的第一起关于性骚扰的审判。法院尚未做出裁决。
        On July 2018, Ms. Wang wrote on Weibo that “a certain leader in W.W.F. surnamed Zhou” kissed her after a drunken night on March 14, 2016 during a work trip. She resigned from her job in 2017 after being diagnosed with depression, she said.         王琪在2018年7月在微博上写道,2016年3月14日出差期间,她在晚上醉酒后被世界自然基金会“某周姓领导”亲了一口。她说,在被诊断出患有抑郁症后,她已于2017年辞职。
        Some people asked her why she was making a big fuss over just a kiss. Her friends warned her not to talk about the incident, telling her she had to “be careful.”         有人问她为什么被亲了一下要小题大做。她的朋友告诫她不要谈论此事,一定要“小心点儿”。
        “I am just angry,” Ms. Wang wrote. “I have no ability to take him to court.”         “我只不过生气罢了,”王琪写道。“我没能力送他去法庭。”
        Ms. Wang said that in the wake of her social-media posts, dozens of women wrote to her, “saying they had similar encounters but they didn’t dare to speak up.”         王琪说,在她的社交媒体帖子发出后,数十名女性写给她,“有几十个人和我说她都曾经有过类似的遭遇,但她不敢说。”
        Mr. Zhou did not respond to requests for comment made through the W.W.F. and did not answer calls to his mobile phone.         周非未回应通过世界自然基金会传达的置评请求,也没有接听手机。
        On a chilly day in December 2018, Ms. Wang appeared before a judge in a small courtroom in Beijing as she prepared to defend herself. Her lawyers, journalists, and a supporter — six people in total — were crammed into the four available seats.         在2018年12月的一个寒冷的日子里,王琪走进北京一间小法庭准备为自己辩护。她的律师、记者和一名支持者——一共6人——挤坐在仅有的四个座位上。
        When Mr. Zhou, her former boss, walked in, Ms. Wang avoided eye contact. The supporter, Tang Ke, stared at him. Ms. Tang said she did not know Ms. Wang personally but decided to come after she saw her post on Weibo.         当她的前上司周非走进来时,王琪避开了目光接触。支持者唐岢则盯着他。唐岢说她并不认识王琪本人,但看到微博上的帖子后决定过来。
        “Look at him, how can he still be smiling?” asked Ms. Tang through gritted teeth.         “看他,他居然还笑得出来?”唐岢咬紧牙问道。
        Later, the judge asked the observers to explain what they were doing in court. Mr. Zhou’s lawyers then argued that the trial had to be closed to the public, citing their client’s privacy. The judge approved the request, prompting a protest from Ms. Tang.         此后法官要求旁听者解释他们来法庭的目的。周非的律师随即提出,为保护其当事人的隐私,审判应该闭门进行。法官批准了这一请求,引发了唐珂的抗议。
        Outside the courtroom, Ms. Tang said she, too, was a victim of sexual assault by three men. She called Mr. Zhou a “bully” for suing Ms. Wang, and said that she was at the courthouse to take a stand against the government censorship of #MeToo.         在法庭外,唐岢说她也是被三名男性性侵犯的受害者。她称周非起诉王琪是“欺负人”,并说她来到法院是为了对“#我也是”的政府审查表示反对。
        “If every woman is able to speak out about sexual assault and expose these men online, then men will have to pay a price,” said Ms. Tang.         唐岢说:“如果每个女性都能讲出性侵并在网上曝光这些男人,那么这些男人就不得不付出代价。”
        “And if there is a price to pay, then they will not dare to do such things.”

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