The Anti-Social Network with Richard Bacon – Internet Trolling

March 21, 2012 at 3:14 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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On Monday evening I watched The Anti-Social Network, a documentary on BBC Three which was created by TV presenter and broadcaster Richard Bacon. The show looked into how the internet has become riddled with cyber bullying, now referred to as “trolling”, and the catastrophic effect that such has had on thousands of internet users.

Trolling is now common place on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter and Richard Bacon has been a victim of trolling himself. Startlingly statistics reckon that a third of people aged 11-17 have experienced cyber bullying in one form or another since creating social network accounts.

Online bullies appear to range from school children tormenting their classmates to anonymous “trolls” mercilessly searching the internet to find innocent victims. Disturbingly it would appear that memorial accounts or RIP pages on Facebook are often targeted by trolls.

Richard Bacon the anti social network

Richard Bacon created The Anti-Social Network

On Monday night’s programme we were shown two cases of RIP pages been targeted with abusive messages and defaced images. Sickeningly both pages were commemorating the lives of young boys who had sadly died; the effect of trolling on their families was devastating to see.

Watching the documentary I felt utterly disgusted and angry. It’s heart breaking to hear that people are getting abused so viciously and often suffering in silence because they are too afraid to tell family and friends about the bullying. It’s also frustrating because there appears to be little that social networking sites can do to safeguard internet users against trolls.

Facebook The Anti Social Network

Cyber bullies often target Facebook & Twitter

Although the police have brought in a law to help stop trolling, only two people have been jailed under it because trolls, especially those who troll anonymously, work their way around social networking sites so strategically. Stealing other people’s identities’ to cover up their own or even creating fake names so as not to be traced.

As an advocate of the internet- I wrote a blog earlier this week encouraging people to get online as its Age UK’s myfriends online week– I’m obviously concerned that trolling will put people off getting online. Instead of avoiding the internet because of cyber bullying simple be aware of trolling and safeguard yourself. Ensure to keep an eye on your account and report any abuse to the appropriate site or police.

I would definitely recommend watch The Anti-Social Network which is on BBC Iplayer now.

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