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Twitter rape threats land UK man in handcuffs

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Campaign to put Jane Austen's face on £10 note leads to online harrassment

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A 21-year-old Manchester man has been arrested in conjunction with rape threats and other harrassment following the Bank of England’s decision to put novelist Jane Austen on the £10 note. Journalist and activist Caroline Criado-Perez led the successful initiative to get more women on British currency, only to face a stream of abuse and threats on Twitter — up to 50 in a single hour. A spokesman from Scotland Yard said that "the arrest is in connection with an allegation of malicious communications received by officers in Camden on Thursday, July 25," reports Sky News.

Following the wave of harrassment, many have called on Twitter to make similar incidents easier to report, with an online petition for the service to add a "report abuse" button garnering over 50,000 signatures since its creation. Criado-Perez is also calling on Twitter and law enforcement to treat the threats with the importance they deserve. "It’s just not acceptable, and more than that it’s actually a crime and Twitter needs to take it seriously and the police need to take it seriously," she said.