Check yourself before you wreck yourself.
Written on 18 March, 2013 by samocat.
I wonder if it ever occurred to Mr Zuckerberg back in 2004 that he was about to unleash the biggest avenue for bullying in the world?
In the explosive world of social media (lets face it, it has become a world of its own) negative consequences were surely an inevitability, however I'm not sure even the great inventor himself could have predicted the ramifications that his site brings to the masses.
The inspiration for this article occurred to me when I read the latest figures for cyber bullying in a recent news article: "Some 87% of teenagers who reported cyber abuse said they were targeted on Mark Zuckerberg's site." It goes without saying that this percentage is highly distressing, but is there something we can do to help ourselves?
I am a 20 year old female and have had my foot on the social media ladder for well over a quarter of my life (my adolescent teenage years were spent cooped up in my room on MSN Messenger and Bebo) and I can safely say that I have never been a victim of cyber bullying. I'm pretty sure I'm the exception not the rule but either way, through a combination of good luck and using some basic common sense, I've managed to avoid it.
I think the number one rule is don't be friends with anyone you don't know - why would you want to be? Yes I have more friends on Facebook than I do in real life and yes I'm due a 'cull' but I'm not about to update my status telling everyone so: "Just had a massive friends cull, congratulations if you're reading this status, I haven't got rid of you... yet ;P" (Don't even get me started on smileys that's a topic for another day.) Even I want to tell the imbeciles who write these status updates where to go - don't be an attention seeker, hard I know considering this is the premiss of Facebook.
You could be forgiven for reading this article and assuming that I am suggesting that every one who is bullied on social media brings it upon themselves. The reality is far from it and most victims of online abuse were originally targets offline. They are now being attacked from multiple channels with little or no help in place.
Has social media become too vast for anyone to grasp any sort of control on? It is a topic that is widely debated but not actively answered. Who can provide some relief on the worsening situation? Perhaps Zuckerberg will come out trumps again and fix his own mess.