woman in wal-mart uniform looking at man leaning over with pool cue

@swagboyq/TikTok

‘That is actually assault’: Popular TikToker accused of sexually assaulting Walmart worker in viral video (updated)

'That pretty much proves my point about rape culture on TikTok.'

 

Tricia Crimmins

IRL

Published Sep 1, 2021   Updated Sep 1, 2021, 3:51 pm CDT

In a TikTok video posted on Aug. 19, which has garnered over 2.6 million likes thus far, TikToker @swagboyq inserts a pole in between a Walmart employee’s legs while she is bending down.

She immediately stands up, surprised, and says “you sticked it up my ass, dude.” He apologizes.

Although @swagboyq captioned the video with the hashtag “prank,” comments on the video call his actions sexual assault.

https://www.tiktok.com/@swagboyq/video/6998210806072560902?is_copy_url=0&is_from_webapp=v1&sender_device=pc&sender_web_id=6998552549025891845

“That ain’t no prank,” wrote @thecuddler15 in a comment that has almost 100k likes. “That’s a case.”

“That is actually assault,” wrote @toothbrushlord.

Other commenters doubled down on condemning @swagboyq, even if the video was staged or the woman was aware of the prank ahead of time.

“It doesn’t matter if it’s staged or not,” wrote @dudeloveme22. “It’s the message it sends out.”

@thebrinalee, a TikToker who frequently speaks on sexual assault on her account, posted a TikTok about @swagboyq’s pranks on August 27.

“That’s a video with 26 million views of a verified creator with 18.8 million followers sexually assaulting somebody,” says @thebrinalee. “I think that pretty much proves my point about rape culture on TikTok.

@thebrinalee

@tiktok Explain how that video is still up?

♬ original sound – Brina

@thebrinalee also commented on the video, saying that “even if the woman is in on it [that] doesn’t make it okay. Rape culture normalizes sexual assault so it’s taken less seriously. It’s not a prank.”

Rape culture, as defined by Vox’s Amanda Taub, is a culture that treats sexual violence as normal and blames victims for being assaulted.

In a follow up video, @thebrinalee defines it as “any social environment that trivializes or minimizes sexual assault and abuse.” She goes on to categorize TikTok as a “global social environment,” where sexual assault, as shown in @swagboyq’s video, is presented as a “prank.”

“And that’s rape culture,” @thebrinalee says.

On August 28, @swagboyq posted another video showing a similar “prank” on a different woman, again bending down in a Walmart aisle.

In this video, @swagboyq touches the woman with a pole twice, which she reacts to. She then continuously apologizes to him, and seems to look at the camera.

@swagboyq told the Daily Dot in an email that both “prank” videos featured paid actors.

@thebrinalee did not immediately respond to the Daily Dot’s request for comment via TikTok comment. The Daily Dot has reached out to Walmart.

If you are a victim of sexual assault or want more information on sexual assault, contact the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

This post has been updated to include a comment from @swagboyq.


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*First Published: Sep 1, 2021, 1:09 pm CDT