Cyber Stalking Really Is That Bad

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Caleb Crain over at The Nation digs in deep to James Lasdun’s new memoir, Give Me Everything You Have, the seemingly terrifying story of his “persecution on the internet by a clever, mentally unbalanced person.”

The cyber-harassment (a wildly tame description of Lasdun’s struggle) was the work of a former student of Lasdun’s, who tormented him over six years with increasingly delusional and threatening emails.

If increasingly delusional and threatening emails isn’t bad enough, the woman, whom Lasdun refers to as “Nasreen” managed to infiltrate the email accounts of those closest to Lasdun, crafting a series of threatening and demeaning correspondences that seemed to derive from Lasdun’s “employers, colleagues and former students.”

In the words of Crain:

“In the battle to save his reputation, Lasdun was at a disadvantage, because in the human mind, disgust travels along paths of association, not logic.”

With access to information seemingly becoming easier and easier on a daily basis, cyber-crimes like these won’t just stay as frightening bits of urban lore told around the digital campfire. Lasdun’s memoir, and Crain’s insightful review of it, make this abundantly clear.