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"I Saw That!" — Woman Films & Calls Out The Man Who Recorded Her Without Consent In KLCC

After he was confronted, the man did not apologise but only nodded, smiled, and even gave a thumbs up to her at one point.

Cover image via Erin Adlina (Provided to SAYS)

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A video of a woman calling out a man for recording her without permission at a restaurant has been making the rounds online and drawn others to share similar stories of harassment

The incident was recorded by Erin Adlina on Monday morning, 7 March, at Chinoz in KLCC where she was having a meeting.

Soon after she sat down to begin the meeting, the man who allegedly recorded her walked in with his friend and sat down at another table nearby.

Erin told SAYS that throughout her meeting, which took about an hour, the man was holding his phone oddly — under his chin, on the right side of his body in Erin's direction, but his face was facing his friend as they talked.

She also described the man's eyes as darting back and forth, from looking at his phone screen to looking at her. He was even holding the phone up like this for about 15 minutes.

The reflection of his phone screen from the mirror behind him also proved that he was recording her, so she knew first-hand what he was doing.

After Erin's meeting was over, she gave her guest a heads up before confronting the man who she believed was recording her

"I'm taking your video because I saw that you were taking my video. Please take your phone and erase it. Erase whatever that you recorded of me because I saw that, okay? I saw that," she told him while recording him.

"It's really rude for you to be doing that when people are having a meeting or eating."

According to Erin, who is a group agency manager and financial consultant, he did not apologise but only nodded, smiled, and even gave a thumbs up to her at one point. In the 28-second video, he can be seen scrolling through his phone but it is not certain whether or not he really deleted the video he recorded.

The man's friend, however, did apologise and even offered to pay the bill for Erin's table, to which she refused because it wasn't his fault but the fault of his friend.

Erin said she felt quite shaken afterwards, yet nobody around her — even the restaurant staff who witnessed the incident — bothered asking if she was alright

"Perhaps it was because I looked calm and I didn't curse or swear, so it didn't look like I was affected. Hence, the reason why no one bothered to ask," she related, adding that it's frightening that society does not care.

She also told this SAYS writer that although it was a nerve-wrecking situation, she called him out because she didn't want the same thing to happen to other women.

Maybe the man will stop, maybe he won't. But Erin wanted that moment to serve as a reminder to him if he ever tries to do it to other women.

Since the video was uploaded on Twitter, many have come forward to share their own experiences of being recorded or photographed without their knowing

From colleagues to random strangers, dozens of women on Twitter shared how they were sexually harassed and how society failed them when they confronted the responsible party.

Some women don't call out their harassers often because of the risks they face and the lack of laws that protect people from acts like stalking. But Twitter users praised Erin for using her platform to call out hers, which could encourage others to do the same, if possible.

As of writing, the video on Twitter has been played over 514,000 times, retweeted over 8,800 times, and garnered over 10,000 likes.

In Malaysia, there are currently no laws against taking a picture of someone without their knowledge

While Malaysian law recognises our right to privacy, taking action against someone for invasion of privacy might be more difficult unless that person used your picture to humiliate, harass, or damage your reputation.

According to Ask Legal, you can probably take a nosy paparazzi to court for harassment if they're following you around and taking pictures of you. However, you have no way to control how they use the photos taken if they're not publishing them in a scandalous or questionable way.

"Unfortunately, all this means that when you appear in public, you automatically consent to be seen by other people, and you therefore cannot stop anyone from taking photos or videos of you," the portal noted.

If you or someone you know may be at risk or has experienced sexual abuse or assault, please reach out to these Malaysian organisations:

1. WOMEN'S AID ORGANISATION (WAO)
Operating hours: 24-hour
Contact: +603-30008858
SMS/WhatsApp: +6018-9888058
Website | Facebook | Twitter

2. ALL WOMEN'S ACTION SOCIETY (AWAM)
Operating hours: Monday to Friday (9.30am - 5.30pm)
Contact: +603-78770224
WhatsApp/Telegram: +6016-2284221 | +6016-2374221
Email: [email protected]
Website | Facebook | Twitter

3. WOMEN'S CENTRE FOR CHANGE PENANG (WCC PENANG)
Operating hours: Monday to Friday (9am - 5pm)
Contact: +604-2280342 | +604-3988340
WhatsApp: +6011-31084001 | +6016-4180342
Email: [email protected]
Website | Facebook | Twitter

4. SARAWAK WOMEN FOR WOMEN SOCIETY (SWWS)
Operating hours: Monday (7pm - 9pm),Tuesday to Thursday (9.30am - 11.30am), Saturday (2pm - 4pm)
Contact: +6082-368853
SMS/WhatsApp: +6016-5822660 | +6013-8044285
Email: [email protected]
Website | Facebook | Twitter

5. SABAH WOMEN'S ACTION-RESOURCE GROUP (SAWO)
Operating hours: Monday to Friday (9am - 5pm)
Contact: +6088-280200 | +6011-27908020
Email: [email protected]
Website | Facebook | Twitter

6. PROTECT AND SAVE THE CHILDREN (PS THE CHILDREN)
Operating hours: Monday to Friday (3pm - 12am)
WhatsApp: +6016-7213065
Email: [email protected]
Website | Facebook | Twitter

7. INTERNET WATCH FOUNDATION (IWF)
Anonymously and confidentially report child sexual abuse content and non-photographic child sexual abuse images with IWF's Reporting Portal.

A 2020 study by the Women's Aid Organisation (WAO) found that the majority of Malaysians have experienced acts associated with stalking:

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