This Anti-Rape Campaign Clarifies the Meaning of Consent

A new anti-rape campaign in London called #ThisDoesntMeanYes has gained popularity for its cheeky approach to affirmative consent. The campaign was created by Rape Crisis, a charity that describes itself as "a feminist organization that that exists to promote the needs of women and girls who have experienced sexual violence, to improve services to them and to work towards the elimination of sexual violence." 

The images for the #ThisDoesntMeanYes campaign portray women wearing things like short skirts, cropped tops, tight dresses and red lipstick and an overlay of the #ThisDoesntMeanYes hashtag. Some of the images have longer blocks of text that say things like, "A short skirt is not a yes" or "A walk home is not a yes." 

These images go beyond simply reinforcing the idea of affirmative consent, which is the idea that nothing but a verbal, sober and enthusiastic "yes" makes sex consensual. The in-your-face images of real women wearing whatever they want and being whomever they want pushes the idea that women need to be able to express themselves however they want without fearing sexual assault as a consequence.

Hopefully this trendy, relatable and empowering campaign will make people think before they say that a woman was "asking for it" based on her appearance or behavior when she is sexually assaulted.