4Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia
The development and uptake of digital media and devices has increased, globally, and so has their presence in intimate relationships and family settings. Such shifts have brought change in the speed, volume and forms of communication, contact, and surveillance between parties. There are undoubtedly positives to such technology, however, these spaceless channels have been used by domestic violence perpetrators to enact harm. Technology-facilitated abuse and stalking transgress traditional boundaries and borders but are not divorced from, and are inextricably linked to other forms of violence. In this paper, the unique features of spaceless violence are outlined with emphasis on the necessity to examine it in the context of coercive and controlling relationships, which impact victim/survivor health, wellbeing and security. Drawing on studies in the Global North and South and interviews and focus groups with victim/survivors, criminal justice agents and advocates, theoretical and practical ways to understand and define technology-facilitated violence are discussed. Challenges with recognising, regulating and responding to spaceless violence and how these might be addressed are identified.
Dr Bridget Harris is a Lecturer in the School of Justice, Faculty of Law, Member of the Crime and Justice Research Centre and Affiliated Researcher in the Digital Media Research Centre at Queensland University of Technology. Her work explores domestic violence in regional, rural and remote locations; technology-facilitated domestic violence and technology-facilitation of justice in the context of domestic violence.