MTR stations, malls top DAB upskirt black spots

Tourist hotspots such as Tsim Sha Tsui promenade observation deck and some MTR stations have been listed as "upskirt black spots" where upskirt pictures may be taken.

Cindy Wan

Monday, July 23, 2018

Tourist hotspots such as Tsim Sha Tsui promenade observation deck and some MTR stations have been listed as "upskirt black spots" where upskirt pictures may be taken.

The latest list was compiled by the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong - the eighth time it has released a report about upskirt black spots in the SAR. Most of them are glass panels lining escalators, and long glass walls in shopping malls and MTR stations.

Popular malls such as Citygate Outlets in Tung Chung, Metro City Plaza in Tseung Kwan O, Megabox and Tak Fook Plaza in Kowloon Bay, and New City Plaza in Sha Tin are prominent on the list.

DAB lawmaker Elizabeth Quat suggested criminalizing all acts of non-consensual visual recording that violates personal privacy rather than just criminalizing voyeurism.

Quat singled out Hysan Place in Causeway Bay, saying that its glass panels lining of escalators and glass fences were listed as black spots several years ago. According to the report, Hysan Place had improved an upskirt black spot in its food square area by sticking opaque stickers on the glass panels of the escalator, but not other escalators and glass walls in the plaza.

Two new MTR stations made the black spot list this year, including Tsim Sha Tsui East and Kowloon station. The party also found the MTR Corporation did not improved the design of glass fences in Central and Tiu King Ling stations that were listed last year.

TST promenade observation deck and the airport terminus building were also named as black spots.

Quat said the DAB would write to the management offices of the black spots each year after releasing its report. She said the MTRC and government had been reminded several times, new black spots are still found in their properties every year.

However, the party also observed a declining trend of voyeurism from police data. Compared to 313 cases in 2016, 285 cases were reported last year. There were 84 cases in this year's first quarter, of which 38 were found committed within MTR stations.

On May 16, the Law Reform Commission's Review of Sexual Offenses Sub-committee launched a three-month consultation on miscellaneous sexual offenses.

One suggestion calls for creation of a new offense of voyeurism, to criminalize acts of non-consensual observation or visual recording, such as photographing or videotaping another person for a sexual purpose.

cindy.wan@singtaonewscorp.com