Social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook can be super fun places where you can express yourself, share your stories, thoughts, and emotions, and connect with friends anywhere in the world. These social media networks can feel like our best friend!
But there’s some stuff we all need to be aware of. Firstly, these social media networks are public spaces. The things we post and share there can be viewed by our friends, family, and even total strangers. If we’re not careful, we might attract negative attention by mean people, and even cyberbullies who might send insulting or hurtful comments, spread some rumours about us or share our pictures without consent. So what should we do if you find ourselves in this kind of situation?
Stay Calm Try not to panic and don't respond. If you receive a hateful or threatening comment, ignore it. On your social media app, you can report that account and you can also block the person. If you are using Facebook you can click in the member profile, select the More option, and select block. Other social media networks like Instagram have a block function. Do not hesitate to block someone when you feel bullied.
Just like in real life, bullies are encouraged when they see you getting upset. And also just like in real life, try to ignore the haters.
Talk to Someone If you know the person who is bullying you online, you could talk to an adult or friend you trust about the situation to see if they can support you. It will help if you can show this person evidence of what’s been happening, so you can take screenshots of the messages or save them to your phone so it’s clear of what happened. We know this may be difficult, be proud of yourself for speaking to someone, it will help you in the long run.
You can always try using these tips on how to talk to someone:
Take deep breaths.
Plan what you are going to say.
Find a quiet spot so you have their full attention.
Talk honestly and in details on your bullying experience
Your honesty in the situation will improve the chances of a positive and helpful reaction. In the event others react badly or blame you, remember it is not your fault. Good job speaking out, maybe they weren't the right person, and when you feel ready, try someone else
Make use of Privacy Settings
Another thing to remember is we can use the privacy settings on our social media platforms. When we use social media we sometimes tend to share many life details in order to feel connected to friends and family. But these private details can be used negatively by cyberbullies We can highly reduce the risk of cyberbullying by using the privacy settings available in the settings menu. This allows us to:
Select the audience for the stuff we share
Who can see our profile
Who can see our posts
It’s horrible to experience cyberbullying so we can all do our part to keep each other safe against cyberbullies and be kind to one another online.