Examining perceptions of blame and homophobia: the impact of sexual orientation on non-consensual intimate image dissemination

Mally Shechory Bitton, Liza Zvi, Nitzan Shamir-Peled

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Our aim was to investigate whether blame attribution toward same-sex victims compared to heterosexual victims of NCII and offense severity evaluation were associated with homophobic attitudes. Two-hundred-and-sixty men and women, who described themselves as heterosexual, were presented with vignettes depicting an NCII offense in which the intimate material was released by the victim’s ex-intimate partner. Victim’s and perpetrator’s sex were manipulated (i.e. gay, lesbian, heterosexual). We found that higher levels of homophobic attitudes were linked with lower severity attributions for same-sex perpetrator-victim pairs, but not for opposite-sex pairs. Additionally, higher levels of homophobic attitudes were associated with lower blame attributed to the perpetrator, but higher blame attributed to the victim. Sex differences were found, revealing that men tended to attribute higher blame to same-sex victims compared to heterosexual victims, whereas women showed no significant differences in blame attribution based on victim’s sexual orientation. Men also exhibited higher levels of homophobic attitudes than did women. The study reveals the impact of homophobic attitudes on blame allocation in NCII cases, emphasizing the need for targeted interventions to reduce victim-blaming and promote inclusivity. The role of technology in shaping behavior was also underscored, urging consideration of sex and sexual orientation in response strategies.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPsychology, Crime and Law
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2024
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Keywords

  • blame attribution
  • homophobic attitudes
  • Non-consensual intimate image dissemination (NCII)
  • sexual orientation

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