This post includes no dramatization, this is everything as it happened exactly, I have proof for almost everything I will say here, even though for me, I don’t care what you believe or how you’re going to justify it. I don’t care about anything other than telling it, so the years won’t pass and we forget and this collective continues to publish about digital rights and feminism and the abuse and the damage they cause go untold.
I will be talking mainly about 3 things:
1) My testimony about the abusive actions the collective and its members has done to me last year
2) The bullying and the violence within the collective.
3) My work that they intended to steal or didn’t mention me on.
The collective have blocked me on twitter and fb since feb 2019, for absolutely no reason, so if I try to mention them and ask if there’s a response they will probably not see it, but I will have done all that I can, because I’m not a coward bully who can’t say the truth to people’s face.
I was involved with Ikhtyar since 2016, I attended reading groups, gender workshops and movie screenings, and since mid 2016 I was an intern, late I became a part-timer and then a full timer for a year and half, for a total of almost 3 years.
I will be using people’s initials and not their full names.
Same time last year, I went through a crisis, I can’t go into the details of this crisis right now, but if you’re someone who knows me you might have an glimpse of what happened, or you can ask me in private and I will let you know.
While I was dealing with this, in the beginning, “M.P.” from Ikhtyar told me more than once in a very short span that “I was still working with Ikhtyar, and I will still get my salary”
For some reason, I had to leave my belongings with “M.P.” and “S.A.” from Ikhtyar, at this time I trusted them blindly, “M” had my passwords, at some point, I wasn’t around them, “M” decided to open my phone and send a whatsapp message to my sister, I can’t say why but this action was most likely to cause x10 more damage to me.
This day, ***I did what we agreed upon*** and went to meet them, I was terrified and still trusted them so I kept my belongings with them and I was still communicating with “M”. The following day when I met them again “M” told me that she, without my permission and without informing me when we communicated the day before, that she formatted my phone. When I took my backpack it was empty, the laptop was taken, chargers and other belongings were taken, even the keys to my apartment they took from me, and I was still terrified so I had no idea what was happening.
“M.P” and “S.A” and a friend of theirs sat with me to know the details of what was happening, the fool that I was thought that they were gathering information to help me or to get someone to help, since right now I became isolated with no access to anyone else but them, right? That was not the case though 😀
I took my empty backpack and I left, agreeing that we won’t meet anytime soon and we would only communicate through safe channels online.
The situation for the next days was like this: I am locked in a house, I don’t feel safe all the time, literally all the time, I suffered from psychological abuse from the people I was living with, I don’t have a penny, I am not allowed to leave the house except for one day a week for exactly 3 hours to visit my psychiatrist (and even then for sometime someone would accompany me there) and for so many reasons I couldn’t have left the house, and even if this was an option it was a risk I wasn’t willing to take, or I thought so back then.
When I was communicating with “M” she was Passive-Aggressive in a way that made me doubt my own mind. A week has passed, and another and I didn’t have any lawyer, and I don’t have access to anyone other than “M” and a friend who was also in trouble and needed help.
At one instance, some relative wanted to declare me insane and incapacitated, he could have done this very easily, when I told “M” about that her reply was something like: “It’s gonna be fine, don’t worry” and dismiss it.
When I was talking to my psychiatrist (She could testify to this?) I told her that I think they have turned on me and that they maybe thinking that I am personally a threat to them, and that all I want is to get my stuff, handover the work, block them and get away from them and I don’t want anything from them.
I asked for my laptop more than once, they would just postpone and postpone.
“M” at some point told me that it is with “N.A.” from Ikhtyar and she will contact me so we can agree on a date to meet, and that I should not talk to her about this anymore, I said Ok and I blocked her, as I planned.
This is the conversation I had with N:
Me: Can you please leave the laptop with this person in that place, I am 100% sure it is safe.
N: No, I will not hand it to anyone but you, in this area, face to face.
Me: Ok, But I am locked in the house I don’t leave except on that day around these specific time, I can skip my psych and meet you.
N: I won’t be available on this time, we can meet at this time ((which was 4 hours after the time I am supposed to be at the house))
Me: But as I told you I can’t make it, Can you please try to make yourself available on that time next week?
We agreed to meet next week.
After that I contacted “S.A” made sure she was ok, and asked her if she know what was going on? I said “M and N are treating me like I killed their dog”, she said “How?” when I explained she said “did you ask them?” I said “No, but if this is normal now then fine”
She said “The whole situation is not normal, we are trying to get back to our lives and work”
I said “Do you think I didn’t notice that everything isn’t normal? it’s just you are treating me like I am the threat!”
I don’t remember the bullshit she said, when we were done talking, I blocked her as well.
I waited until the next week to get my laptop and block the rest of the collective until everything is back to normal and then we could talk ((Because until then I was convinced that they perceived me as a threat, this is why I was understating their treatment))
Next week I skipped my psychiatrist and went to meet N at the place and time we agreed upon, this is how the conversation went from the moment we met:
N: we want the email accounts.
Me: I don’t have access to emails, you formatted my phone, broke my yubikey, so I only have access through the laptop if you give to me I will share the emails with you!
N: So you can’t access them?
Me: No, I don’t even have access to my personal accounts!
N: Then how did you access your twitter?
Me: **Explaining how a humanbeing can access an account that has no 2fa and remembers its password to the average citizen**
N: **An investigation that lasted about 15 minutes**
N: Then how are you going to share the emails with us?
Me: Give me my laptop, the accounts are saved on it, I won’t need 2fa, and I will share the passwords with you through texts!
**A half hour already passed since we sat down**
N: The problem is, we destroyed your harddrive!
Me: WTF? Why? Who told you to do this?
((She spoke of Bullshit that wouldn’t convince any child with a brain who can conclude why keeping a laptop on you but destroying the harddrive, and wait for god’s will, is NOT AT ALL safe, if I need to explain why, PLEASE don’t ever EVER take anyone’s laptop, stupidfuck))
I was overwhelmed and trying to understand what was going on, I had this laptop since I was 17, it has my work, my projects, short stories and writings I don’t have any other copy of, Photos of me and my family that I also don’t have any other copies of, and other stuff that could be used to fuck me over and my family if any one had access to them.
Me: Ok, then how did you destroy it? And the laptop doesn’t work without the charger, where is it?
N: I won’t tell you how, and I have no idea where is the charger!
Me: WHAT? Why? It’s my right to know how you destroyed my own harddrive!
N: You weren’t truthful with us, so I won’t tell you!
Me: WTF? Why wouldn’t you? And what lies did I tell you?
N: **doesn’t answer**
Me: What lies did I tell?
N: This is a conversation to be had with the collective I won’t speak for them!
Me: then when will you tell me as a collective?
N: I don’t know!
Me: Then speak for yourself personally, how did I lie to you?
N: **NO ansewr**
At this point I had to leave, to be able to speak and breathe.
I sent a text to N asking for my harddrive, then I believed it wasn’t destroyed. N saw the text and didn’t reply.
I sent the same message to S, she replied as if she copied and pasted the same bullshit answer N had told me.
I texted again that I don’t believe them, and I wanted to know what are they accusing me of?
S blocked me….
I won’t go into details of the damage they caused, probably you can conclude how someone who has been told this, and suffered the emotional abuse those 3 people done to me, must have felt. When I was already facing abuse a thousand other ways, and they knew.
But I will say that to THIS VERY DAY I have no idea how they destroyed my harddrive, and whether it was in a safe way or not, and that I spent months, going on loops of panic whenever I think about it, and the possibility of them just throwing it in the garbage and anyone with little effort can access what’s on it.
To THIS VERY DAY I have not idea where is my harddrive with all my data on it, for no reason, other than them wanting to cause me harm because I wasn’t “”truthful”” but they won’t even tell me how I wasn’t? Maybe.
To THIS VERY DAY no has offered me any type of compensation for my own property that they have unjustifiably destroyed.
First if the justification is “safety” this wasn’t safe by any reasoning, it even could have caused me even more damage that I have a laptop with no harddrive. Second of all, the laptop was TAKEN from my backpack without my permission ((I won’t say this is a theft)) I didn’t ask anyone to take it and I didn’t give anyone permission to do anything with it.
After this happened I tried to mediate someone, who also ghosted me aswell.
I tried to mediate another mutual friend to go sit with them, understand what was happening and let me know, after she did that this was what they said:
First, that I put them at risk, for doing something WE DID agree upon, and there were witnesses to this.
Second, that I did something which eventually led to the crisis I am in, without their permission and that they have warned me not to do it and I did it any way. Which was also a lie, I remember EXACTLY what they said to me and it wasn’t like that, it wasn’t even close to how they are trying to make it look like.
(((I won’t go into details of how this gaslighting from people I trusted blindly has damaged my mental health, and caused me to believe I was going crazy seeing, hearing and remembering things that didn’t happen)))
and finally that I got kicked out of the collective.
So I gave up, I was only whining on twitter and facebook, and I was looking for a job because at this point I needed a source of income to leave the house.
But NOPE, Ikhtyar, after they “Took my laptop from my backpack without my permission and didn’t want to give it back (Iwon’tsayTHEFT)”, after they destroyed my harddrive, and arbitrary-dismissed me from the collective, without a PENNY, and lied about me, and blocked or ghosted me, they wanted to take my hard work “Feminist Hackathon” That I did 95% of it ALONE, from the fucking logo, to selecting participants, to preparing content, to facilitation and booking the venue and giving sessions. “S” was supposed to help me out with the interviews she didn’t show up most of the time because she was either at the gym or ??didn’t bother showing up??. For 3 months I worked overtime, I stayed till 9 or 10 PM doing interviews and confirming with participants, then go to book the venue, and doing the fine little details. After all of this, they wanted to take this hardwork, because fucking entitlement amirit? And do a presentation in IFF in Portugal, without even mentioning the NOONE that did most of the work by herself,
They had a participant who was going to do the presentation with them, after removing my name as a presenter and added “S” they lied to this participant and told her my name wasn’t even there from the start, at this point she also realized that they were bullshitters and offered me support that I still appreciate to this moment (many others participants offered me support and am forever grateful).
OFCOURSE Ikhtyar likes to talk about “collective work” and that all the work is OUR work not the individual’s, and that they are a intersectional-nonherircacal-feminist-collective. And all of this is great until you see your hard work taken to get the funds and attention by two shits who spent most of their time there eating and gossiping.
To that point, neither Ikhtyar nor anyone from Ikhtyar, thought to send me an email to let me know what’s my status, where’s my salary? And why was I kicked out?
(They would probably say it was a risk, which is bullshit, you’ll know why later + until they blocked me we were already texting, no problem!)
After I realized by accident that they took my name off the presentation, I went to the hackathon FB group, removed the collective members BECAUSE I didn’t want to have a reply-war on the group, I wrote briefly about the situation, I said that I made this project and that I love it and want to keep working on it and they won’t let me. So I asked them to decide what to do next, I wrote the collective’s emails and asked them to screenshot the post and send it to them and ask for their side of the story and said clearly that if anyone added them back to the group I will let them back in.
Hours later, the respectable collective, send (NOPE, not to me) To the hackathon community an email saying “They are dealing with the situation and an accountability investigation will be conducted, and that I was lying (LOL?) and I wasn’t kicked arbitrarily, I wasn’t even kicked (She’s Curazy guys, she sees things)
Few days later (FINALLY)(SubhanAllah it’s no longer a threat) they sent me an email to invite me to a meeting to discuss my situation in the collective, and since I already knew I was kicked I didn’t see a point of going, I asked the mutual friend and she said it was going to be an investigation not a meeting, I said cool alright I’ll go.
When I got to the meeting at Ikhtyar’s office, the 5 members of the collective were there, their friend (also AKA their advisor “L.D.”) was their, and the mutual friend and I.
I will not go into the details of the intimidation, the yelling, and the long speech that the respectable “D.A.” throw at my face, it was really low, I wouldn’t wish it on someone I hate.
In conclusion, the collective has already conducted an investigation, ???as in every member investigated the other??? and they came up with 3-pages full of reasons why I was kicked and that I was kicked after this investigation and not before it. She “D” ordered (yes, ordered, and shoved it my face when i put it away) me to sign on it and take two months salary as a “Good-well gesture” from the collective.
The reasons, again, were really low, I wouldn’t wish on someone I despised, It was either lies, arbitration, more lies. Bullshit I could disprove with a simple screenshot, for anyone who would listen, in any decent investigation.
Is it enough to say that they accused me of “Abstaining from work”?
I was laughing while reading the papers, “L” the advisor stopped me and asked me not to mock, as if she didn’t hear the patronizing speech I just got 5 minutes ago.
I refused to sign or take the money, and I asked respectfully for a fair investigation, let’s be accountable.
“L” mocked my words and smirked (:D?) while saying stuff “there’s no such a thing as a plaint against arbitrary dismissal” and “Do you want me to believe YOU over these five women?” (over something that I was told by the person next to her). The collective members were eager all the time to prove I wasn’t kicked as another level of gaslighting, they were like “NAH YOU CRAZY” look at this proof? Did you receive an email?
When I insisted on having a fair investigation, D told me, very clearly, hit the wall this is what we have, and something like “Who would conduct this investigation? All the civil society are motherfuckers!”….etc
Later the respectable D started to emotionally blackmail me, saying things like “Don’t you know what you have done to us?” and literally nothing happened to them, I was the only one who got fucked, I was the only one who took responsibility of my actions, I’d have rather to die before any of them got harmed because of me, the were shocked, that’s it, they were scared for a few days and then they went back to their parties and normal life!
D continued with the manipulation and started to blame ME for the shit I am in, as if I wanted or sought it, or even thought for a minute it could happened. I yelled at them and took my stuff and left.
At the point everyone was advising me to expose them, to send to their funders, to sue them. But I was exhausted, I didn’t want anything other than getting a job and money to leave the house I was in. I thought about admitting myself into a psych hospital, because at this moment all I was thinking was that I went mad or that I wanted to die ((AND I’m not using this to blackmail anyone, I am just saying things as it was, fuck anyone who would think that I’d use my mental health to blackmail anyone))
if it wasn’t for some help I got and a Lawyer I sat with, that I got calm and knew what was happening, I’d have admitted myself, or killed myself.
I applied for a job, and got accepted, before that I applied for an internship at Motoon, I stated very clearly that I didn’t meet most of the requirement of the job they were offering but I still want to work and learn in this place, so if there are any internships I would like to be there.
I got an interview, I stated clearly that I had another job and I have to continue there because I need a source of income, but I still want this internship and I can do it in the weekends of my job, I also mentioned that I left ikhtyar without any specific details.
I fucked up in the interview given the mental state I was in, so I thought it’s ok I’ll just stick with the job I have until I get well and apply again.
Few hours later I received a job offer from motoon.
And I received another job offer from a third place. After I thought about it, I decided to accept motoon’s offer.
Motoon’s director who knew I had another job WAITED until I left that job and declined another offer, waited until the day I was going to start my job to tell me that I won’t work there, because she contacted S from Ikhtyar after (ALSO motoon’s advisor “L.D.”) said I have “”RED FLAGS””. She decided not to give me the job even before she listened to my side of the story or giving me a chance to defend myself against their lies. But she wanted the “Collaboration” with Ikhtyar so FUCK ME, they are more important and profitable.
So, the situation is, Ikhtyar destroyed my laptop which I could have used to get a source of income I desperately need since my mental and physical health depended on it (and I won’t go into details that even to this day is traumatizing) They got me out of a job using their social power.
They were always using their status inside the civil society, as big names and a reputable collective, and I am a no one!, they would always belittle everything I say or write, nothing I was saying was important enough for them to take seriously, no demand was worth looking at. And this is not new, it’s an extension of their bullying, abuse and holier-than-thou attitude, which is an essential part of their collective. Which takes us to the second point:
I want to talk about the verbal and physical abuse I suffered while I was a member of Ikhtyar, specifically on the hands of “M.P.” and Again I am not an exception, they and M do this to anyone who they perceive as not-their-equal, bullying and gossiping is a good member of ikhtyar, an essential part of their “Feminist intersectional Knowledge Production”
When I started working with ikhtyar I was young and intimidated I suffered physical abuse on the hands of M, many times, I was beaten with intention of humiliation and sometimes it was hard brusing beating, one time I got “Bitten” by her on my arm, I bled and my arm was swollen and blue for a week or more (it was painful and humiliating).
And the verbal abuse, many many many times, the last one was maybe a month before I left, M entered the office and without any explanation started cursing me in front of everyone, she kept insulting me even when I denied doing the thing she accused me of, until I was humiliated enough I was about to cry.
I won’t talk about any more details, about me or other people, because again and again I am not an exception and the collective is pretty known to make home of bullies.
So in case you have to go to ikhtyar, beware if you don’t look as important as they are.
Imagine after all this, the collective have a clause in their bylaws stating that they don’t tolarate “MICRO-Aggressions” from their members 😂
And finally, and this is not as important as everything else to me, but just in case, I want to mention the research they just published and mentioned everyone who worked on it, except for me, they just mentioned the data analyst (with a male pronoun, lol), this is the second time after the hackathon, so beware guys! We can’t sue them!
Final finally, so you won’t be surprised, Ikhtyar will responed by one of these options:
1) They won’t say anything, let it pass, because I mean as someone who was involved with them for almost 3 years, and was a close friend to most of them, not THAT important to address.
2) They will provide a very long well-written bullshit (that’s their thing) about how much I am not stable, and put them at risk, which is again NOT true, you can talk to me and I’ll tell you how, and what precautions I took, it was always always my priority to not cause anyone harm even if it’s gonna fuck me over even more!
3) They will resort to their favorite action of bullying, and “Partying” using gifs and memes, so you can’t hold them responsible.
Ikhtyar to this day are all about digital rights, mental exhaustion and feminism, Women and women’s stories and documenting and setting our narratives, and they dismiss the abuse they did to me, that the worst misogynist wouldn’t do to a woman, a friend and a feminist colleague who was in a crisis and in need of support or at least needs no more harm. They forget about destroying my property and my data, and the invasion of my privacy, and their attempt to steal my work or forgetting to mention me on it. So this is my testimony as woman who was a part of the collective for 3 years, and you can believe whatever you want, confirmation bias rules!