A spectre is haunting Northwestern – the spectre of Morty’s Angels.
The misogynistic website is a twisted “hot-or-not”-style game which pits Northwestern’s females against each other. It’s the Northwestern version of Mark Zuckerberg’s infamous Facemash website, which did the same thing for Harvard in 2003.
Like Facemash, Morty’s Angels only rates women. The girls most frequently chosen as hotter than their counterparts make up the website’s so-called Top 50. (UPDATE: The Top 50 section has been hacked. See below.)
One person in the Top 50, Sarah Burton, told The Chronicle she thought the website was “pretty idiotic.”
“It is trying to create unnecessary, childish drama,” she wrote in an email. “Whoever created it definitely has too much time on their hands.”
Burton told The Chronicle she had not given anyone consent for her photo to be used. Another ‘member’ of the Top 50, Ava Steir, also said she did not give consent, and would like to see Morty’s Angels “shut down.”
Morty’s Angels’ domain was registered yesterday. It appears to rely on people submitting the names and photos of female students to its gmail account, firstname.lastname@example.org.
An email to Morty’s Angels went unanswered; under its Press section, the website reads “we probably will not respond.”
Unsurprisingly, this latest manifestation of everything that’s wrong with tech and bro culture is garnering substantial opposition on social media.
Well this is upsetting: http://t.co/uCYEqKIMkd. Come on Northwestern. We’re better than this bullshit.
— Alex Duner (@asduner) May 24, 2014
The contempt for the website is certainly well-deserved. It’s worth remembering, however, that our generation’s John D. Rockefeller started out by doing exactly this. Something ironic considering the amount of people complaining about Morty’s Angels on Facebook.
UPDATE 2: University officials are “investigating” the website.
The University is investigating the Morty’s Angels website. Updates likely to come when the Northwestern resumes business on Tuesday.
— NorthbyNorthwestern (@nbn_tweets) May 24, 2014
UPDATE 3: The website has been taken down. Its founders emailed The Chronicle: “We are done. Everything has been deleted from every machine that it has ever touched. It will not return.”
The Morty’s Angels parody website, Morty’s Cats, remains up.