A female plumbing service is being subjected to relentless online trolling by anti-feminist activists, who have accused the Brisbane business of sexism.
During an appearance on The Project this evening, Tradettes founder Helen Yost said the company were inundated over the weekend by abusive emails, social media comments, prank calls and negative reviews from a group called Anti-Feminism Australia.
“It has been an extraordinary experience, to say the least,” she told the Channel 10 program.
“The page that has been sharing our information in a not-so-great light has been saying stuff like us being sexists. They’re saying that we’re trying to run the industry down and that we’re not doing a good job as female plumbers.”
According to its website, Tradettes offers “training and experience of a male plumbing service, combined with the communication skills, service, cleanliness, and attention to detail of a woman”.
Following a Facebook post by Anti-Feminism Australia criticising this statement, the group’s followers fabricated numerous one-star reviews on the company’s page.
“Useless women,” wrote one.
“Do not use this company, especially if you are man, they hate you,” wrote another.
And, “Wouldn’t let them tie my shoe laces, let alone do a mans job.. Look elsewhere [sic].”
But despite the group's best efforts, the resulting media attention has massively backfired, in that it's exposed the business to a national audience.
"They were definitely angling for us to either close our doors or change the way we do things," Yost told The Project.
"In fact, it's actually going to fuel the fire. Thanks, guys. Thanks for fuelling that fire for us."