Hi Folks! Hope you are doing well! I want to tell you a story today. A girl in some city accepted the follow request of an unknown person on Instagram. They started reacting on each other’s post. Gradually, they started chatting, by this way the girl began trusting him. He asked questions related to her personal life and she answered all his questions. They began to exchange photos, phone numbers, addresses and all sorts of sensitive info. The girl trusted him so much that she never denied for anything. Time passed by and one day girl sees her sensitive pictures in her Instagram message box. This was the same picture which she shared with that person. He started threatening her to embarrass her on Instagram and ruin her image. This type of act is known as Cyber bullying. Today I am here to tell you about the cyber bullying and steps taken by Instagram against it.
Mostly teenagers got trapped in this act. They never discuss with their parents, friends. Sometimes cyber bullying lead people into depression.
This is the story of many among us. Some disclosed it and others hide it because they think they will not get proper support and aids. Today, in this article I am going to talk about cyber bullying, its impacts, how to prevent and Instagram tools, which have been launched to curb this.
Bullying is not new, it roots years back in our society. You can see in schools one child is teased by a group of children, this is called bullying. Our society has found a new way of bullying. That new way is internet and social media.
The act of teasing, sending absurd messages and pictures, defaming someone’s image on social media or on other electronic platforms and writing defamatory, discouraging and abusive comments on anyone’s post comes under the purview of Cyber Bullying. According to a research done on young people, 1 among 2 have been bullied at some point in life. 2 among 5 have been bullied within the past year. 1 in 10 has been bullied within the past week.
Reasons for being bullied
The perceived motive of being bullied is as follows:
- -50% were bullied because of their appearances
- -11% bullied because of masculinity and femininity
- -8% were bullied because of disability
- -10% were bullied because of race
- -5% were bullied because of their cultural identity
Signs of being bullied
If you see the following signs in a person, this indicates of that person being bullied:
- -If a person is awkwardly shy or withdrawn.
- -If a person deactivated all his social media accounts.
- -If a person completely stops using the internet.
- -If a person is moody and agitated all the time.
- -If a child skips school.
- -If a child’s academic performance is going down.
- -If a person attempts self-harming activities.
- -If a person is experiencing nightmares and his sleeping and eating patterns are changed.
Impact of cyber bullying
Cyber bullying can have lots of bad impact on a person’s health and personality. They are described below:
- 41% of people developed social anxiety
- 37% of people developed depression
- 26% had suicidal thoughts
- 26% deleted their social media profile
- 25% self-harmed
- 24% stopped using social media
How to prevent cyber bullying?
You can do the following to prevent cyber bullying:
For teens and kids
- –Know that this is not your mistake, you just fell a victim to a bully. If a person is constantly harassing you, making your fun, insulting .i.e bullying.
- –People, who bully are hungry for your reactions, do not react. If possible, get away from the bully.
- –If somebody is bullying, capture his messages and comments. Keep a record of all his activities.
- –Ask that person to stop bullying you, tell him that you will not tolerate anymore.
- –Talk to parents, friends, relatives, teachers or anybody who can understand your problem and carve a solution for this.
- –All social media apps provide the option of reporting and blocking a person on them. If necessary, block that person.
- –Do not share your password with anyone plus always password protects your phone so that nobody can steal any data from your phone.
- –If you know somebody is being bullied, take action.
- –Never open messages from people who you don’t know.
- –Never accept friend requests of unknown people.
- –If you ever see change in your child’s eating and sleeping habits. Talk to them.
- – If they are approaching you and telling their issues, just listen to them patiently.
- – Know both sides of the story before taking any reaction.
- – Restore the confidence and self-esteem of your child. Being bullied someone takes away the dignity and self-respect of a person. He starts to feel very bad about himself.
- – Ask your child to set up privacy controls.
- – Intervene publicly to sort out the problem.
Steps taken by other social media to curb cyber bullying
- YouTube has started removing hateful videos.
- Facebook gives the option of blocking a person on messenger, restricting the person and you can even block the person. You can also report any photo or comment as inappropriate.
- Instagram also gives the option of blocking the messages.
New Instagram tool for cyber bullying
With the data I have provided above, you can get a measure of how much bullying is prevalent on the internet and the need to curb it. Instagram has decided to curb cyber bullying on its platform. Here I am going to share the feature presented by Instagram to stop the cyber bullying.
An A.I. based feature
Instagram is working on an A.I. based feature which will give users an opportunity to think before posting their comments. When a user will type a comment, with the use of Artificial Intelligence Instagram will come to know of that comment is offensive or not. If there is anything wrong or derogatory in the comment, Instagram will ask user if they really want to publish that. Instagram says they cannot stop somebody to comment but they can give people a chance to forbade them from bullying others. This feature is named “Rethink.”
Another feature announced against bullying is restrict. This feature is for those people who are not comfortable in blocking people and their messages on Instagram. Through this feature, if you restrict a person his comments will be visible only to you and him. If you want to publish his comments you can by unrestricting him. If a restricted person sends you a message it will go in the message requests folder. You can reply to his messages by unrestricting him. This feature can keep the cyber bully distant from you. If you restrict a person he will be able to see all your posts but he will never get to know when you are online, whether you have seen his messages or not.
Cyber bullying has become very common these days. We must make people aware of this and steps for fighting with this. Support people who already facing this issue.
I am feeling very disappointed to say that this is a very common phenomenon these days.
In the words of The Guardian, “According to a research by the Pew Research Center, 59% of American teenagers have been bullied or harassed online. In the UK, the anti-bullying charity Ditch the Label found that 42% of British, 12-20 years-olds had been cyber bullied on Instagram in its 2017 bullying survey.” People of LGBTQ community have been cyber bullied the most. 9% of people are bullied on Twitter, 12% on WhatsApp, 10% on YouTube, 31% people on Snap chat, and 37% of people are bullied on Facebook. This data is really alarming. We need to curb Cyber bullying. Shocking is that only 63% of people reported about them getting bullied and 37% of people never told anyone about that. We all need to fight against cyber bullying in place of keeping mouth shut. Get in touch with us for more interesting articles. Till then keep reading 🙂