'horrible' | 

Newstalk host Andrea Gilligan says she receives ‘nasty’ online abuse from other women

The radio presenter admitted the “horrible” messages have gotten progressively worse over the years

Andrea Gilligan

Maeve McTaggartSunday World

Newstalk host Andrea Gilligan has opened up about the “exceptionally nasty” abuse she receives online – including from other women.

The radio presenter admitted the “horrible” messages have gotten progressively worse over the years.

"I actually usually never look at them but a friend flagged it with me one day just to say, have you spotted this? Like have you read the comments?” she told Lunchtime Live listeners today.

“When I did and I looked and I saw the extent of it, they were just … they are horrible.

“Really nasty comments talking about me, my body, my appearance. Like, everything you could possibly imagine when I looked at them,” she said, adding the situation has “gotten worse” in recent years.

"There’s no point in saying otherwise - it has, absolutely - and I know I am not the only one who receives this; my colleagues in other stations and friends that I talk to certainly get it as well.

“I do wonder though, do my male colleagues receive it in such a personal way? Is it as personal?

“I have no issue with people telling me they dislike me, they dislike the show, my style, my opinion – whatever that’s all fair game.

“But I think, when it comes to your appearance and your body shape, how you wear your hair, what clothes I choose to wear - whatever it is - it takes a very, very different turn and it becomes exceptionally nasty.

“I do want to say this because I know how this will be perceived today – it is not all from men,” she added.

“The comments I get, typically on Twitter and public threads, probably nine times out of ten they are from men, but it’s the messages I receive privately; the private messages I open on Instagram or Facebook Messenger, from people that I don’t know, that I’m not friends with, that I don’t follow – 95% of the time, they’re from women.

“So, this is not an attack on men – not at all.

“Certainly, the b****y messages that I receive, I would say the majority of them are from women.”

She said it is “pretty incredible” to click on the profiles of those sending abusive messages and seeing they feature photos of them with their kids and families.

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