#ConsentIs hashtag takes off in wake of alarming campus rape survey

Sep 22, 2015 at 5:36 p.m. ET

Consent is a word that has one clear meaning, but it's a meaning that seems to have been lost in a time when rape on college campuses is all too common.

In fact, a new Association of American Universities survey that polled students at various college campuses across the country found that one in four college women report some form of unwanted sexual contact. Another 20 percent of respondents in the survey of 780,000 students said sexual assault and misconduct is very or extremely problematic on their own campus.

With such a high rate of sexual assault, educating folks about consent is more important than ever.

That's where Promoting Aware/Victim Empowerment's (PAVE) new, national social media-driven campaign comes in. #ConsentIs not only provides a space to talk openly about sexual assault, but also promotes the five essentials of consent: verbal, sober, enthusiastic, freely given and consistent.

More: This school is teaching students about consent before they even step on campus

Angela Rose, PAVE's executive director, says, "We live in a cultural climate where cases of sexual assault are recurrent. Far too often, these cases go unreported. With easy access to social media, we have an opportunity to educate young people who face these challenges. The #ConsentIs campaign is an interactive approach to spreading awareness of such a serious issue. We want to reduce cases of sexual assault and create a culture of respect."

More: 'Cup of Tea' is the sexual consent video all men need to see (WATCH)

It's catching on.

Take a look at some of the most moving responses yet — from both women and men: 


More: How to talk to kids about rape ... and when