To every positive, there is a negative. Social Media has given us the power to share our thoughts, feelings, interests, and more, and connect with people all over the world like we never could before. It’s a powerful tool with many positive aspects. However, this power has also allowed people to use it for a more darker purpose. It comes in many shapes and forms, but when it boils down to it, it’s simply known as Cyber Bullying.
I ask you to direct your attention to the short video below, as it describes the basics of what Cyber Bullying consists of- if you don’t know already.
Now, I’m sure this is a concept that isn’t new to you. However, it’s becoming a bigger problem on a much larger scale. Teens are falling under the pressures of these poisonous individuals and their increasingly vicious words. I have a few examples of just how atrocious these anonymous attacks can be. I’ve taken the liberty of blurring out usernames, as well as some of the more colourful vocabulary used, for the sake of the public.
These are just three examples of the thousands of hate messages that get sent to people everyday. My question is, why? It’s always been said that bullies bully because they’re unhappy and uncomfortable in their own lives. But, I can’t help but wonder what the cause is behind these anonymous attacks, and why they’ve become
so vicious. Before the internet, I’d never seen such intense bullying in my everyday life on the schoolyard as a child.
What changed? Is it the false sense of anonymity and security that these individuals possess, as stated in the video above? It’s curious to think about. Especially when one takes a look at a post like this.
While the message from this series of event should be “Don’t send anyone hate period”, I find it curious that this particular anonymous individual seemed to understand the consequences of what their actions mean if this user actually had taken their life. So, what is the motive in sending these messages to people? Is it out of some sick form of amusement? Boredom? I find it scary to think about the possibilities myself.
Even scarier is what’s occurring as a result of this hate. Victims are starting to spread hate of their own out of frustration to innocent parties. That’s right, people who have done absolutely nothing wrong are receiving hate of their own from victims of bullying simply because they share similar traits to their attackers.
I don’t know about you, but I find the online community becoming a scarier and scarier place with each passing moment.
What do you think can be done to solve the problem of hate online? Personally, I think we need to start educating children and teens about the consequences of their actions both online and offline a bit more than we already do. Especially when it comes to sending online messages of hate and death threats.
(all examples used in this post are taken from Tumblr.)