Don't want to give that guy your phone number? Let him talk to bell hooks instead!

A new app lets the feminist icon drop some wisdom to dudes who don't know how to take "no" for an answer

Published June 13, 2014 4:46PM (EDT)

   (<a href=''>  Jan Mika </a> via <a href=''>Shutterstock</a>)
( Jan Mika via Shutterstock)

I love it when brilliant and tech savvy feminists do something brilliant and tech savvy.

This "feminist phone intervention" is kind of perfect. If you're at a bar, in the super market, walking down the street or anywhere, really (street harassment and unwanted sexual advances are not location specific) and someone asks for your number and won't take no for an answer, you can now give that person feminist icon bell hooks' number. Well, not exactly bell hooks' number, but a generic number that will serve up an automated quote from the writer and activist through text or voicemail.

Here's what happened when I texted this afternoon:

Kind of cool, right?

The makers of the hotline explain their inspiration like this:

protect your privacy while dropping some feminist knowledge when your unwanted “suitor” calls or texts.

because we’re raised to know it’s safer to give a fake phone number than to directly reject an aggressive guy.

because we’re raised to know that evasion or rejection can be met with violence.

because women are still threatened and punished for rejecting advances.

because (669) UGH-ASIF, WTF-DUDE, and MAJR-SHADE were taken.

because why give any old fake number, when you can have bell hooks screen your calls?

so next time, just give out this number: (669) 221-6251

tech to protect.


By Katie McDonough

Katie McDonough is Salon's politics writer, focusing on gender, sexuality and reproductive justice. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at

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Bell Hooks Cool Stuff Feminism Feminists In Tech Sexual Harassment