London Tube social experiment almost turns violent as men rush to 'groped' woman's aid

Nicholas McCallum

A social experiment on the London Underground nearly ended in violence when several angry men rushed to help a "groped" woman and nearly hit her apparent attacker.

The mock sexual assault took place on the crowded tube carriage with a blonde actress feigning distress as a lecherous man pressed up against her.

The actress tries to avoid her colleague staging a lewd act. Source: YouTube/Trollstation
The actress tries to avoid her colleague staging a lewd act. Source: YouTube/Trollstation

"Can you not touch me, you know that's sexual assault. Excuse me, you can't be doing that," the actress pleads aloud.

She tries to avoid her fellow thespian by moving toward some unknowing commuters, shouting: "Excuse me! Stop!"

The actress tells the strangers she does not know the man, but the leering man tells them: "I want to touch her."

As the scene plays out over a minute, another passenger leaps from his seat to intervene, charging the apparent sexual assailant, ready to give him a bloody nose.

Several passengers intervened and almost did so violently. Source: YouTube/Trollstation
Several passengers intervened and almost did so violently. Source: YouTube/Trollstation

Another passenger steps in to protect the woman from her attacker and the situation becomes tense and dangerous, causing the actress to break character. She pulls the pin and tells the marks they're in a social experiment.

But someone had already pulled the trains emergency brake prompting the police to be called.

"That's a bit f*****g stupid then," one passenger says.

"We are trying to raise awareness of sexual assault on trains because a lot of the time people see it happening and nobody says anything," the woman tells them.

The actress was grateful the men rushed to her aid and thankful her acting colleague was not injured. Source: YouTube/Trollstation
The actress was grateful the men rushed to her aid and thankful her acting colleague was not injured. Source: YouTube/Trollstation

While the performance by video pranksters Trollstation had the desired affect of drawing people's attention to assault on public transport it also drew the ire of many passengers who dismissed it as "stupid and annoying".

A Transport for London spokeswoman said the experiment had nothing to do them and would not provide comment.

The spokeswoman did point out the London Underground is running an awareness campaign under the hashtag #ReportItToStopIt also aimed at drawing attention to and stamping out unwanted advances on public transport.

There seems no end to the situation these social experiments are will to try out. But the real measure of is probably how viral they go.

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Morning news break – November 11