Cyberbullies have made the web a place of hatred and hostility

Posted on September 2, 2013 10:05 am

The vast advancement of technology means the Internet is now more accessible than ever. Internet access has made it easier to look up updated news, information, contact friends and families, look for jobs and other beneficial purposes. However, isolated number use Internet for all the wrong reasons which studies have shown they have lead to fatal outcomes including deaths. A recently released report indicates that Cyber bullies are getting away with their crimes. Most cited reason was that it is legally impossible to nail down the culprit if what a person has to do is to deny any responsibility in bullying. The stalkers who often use anonymous accounts have got away because of lack of evidence, a standard requirement in prosecution of culprits. As more of the people get connected online who is going to protect them from cyber crooks. There was one case where a Facebook account owner where hate messages had originated easily rebutted charges against him claiming he was innocent and was nowhere near the computer at the time the messages was sent out.

Cyberbullying is simply defined as a process of harassing, teasing, or intimidating fellow Internet user with words or images. It is a huge challenge faced by many Internet users with a rising number of people, at an alarming rate committing suicides. Cyberbullies also known as Internet trolls, are crooks whose intention is to terrorize other users and some explicitly claim to do it as a hobby. In some cases that I know about, Internet trolls enjoy stirring things up, posting rude comments for the sake of starting off arguments. It is not easy nailing offenders to the charge. Sometimes you can find evidence and sometimes you can’t. In a research carried out in Australia last year, it was noted that Internet trolls mainly attack the victims through public forums, chat rooms, social networks sites like Facebook and Twitter by commenting on victims’ status updates or pictures and most of them negative. In cities of Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth Canberra, Sydney and Adelaide cyberbullying in social media was said to involve networking a whole lot of other people who would then be cyberbullied and humiliated in front of hundreds of other people online as a group rather than an individual.

In France, Germany, UK and USA if bullying message account is identified, then the owner is deemed to have published the content and that means he or she will be prosecuted. In Holland, Belgium, Spain and Italy there are laws where bullying postings coming from social media accounts or even phone accounts, the registered account user is deemed to be the publisher unless the contrary is proved. In Australia and New Zealand laws one is presumed to be the publisher unless user can prove otherwise. Despite the multiple arrests made daily globally, the conviction rate of suspected cyber offenders globally is still very low. However, there are thousands of daily cases of people making obscene and offensive comments through the Internet and phones. In developing countries, research shows that it is especially difficult to prosecute cyber bullying offenders because servers are located outside those countries. All in all, there are very many ways to prevent cyberbullying. In my case, I have a habit of ignoring friend request on social networks especially Facebook and Twitter from those I don’t know and even for those I don’t like their online postings some which are very disgusting. In addition to that, I do also stay away from commenting on sensitive issues that makes no sense to me or add value to my reputation. For example why would I bother commenting on nudity? That’s nonsense meant for airheads and the filthy netizens.

In most countries, Cyberbullying has been categorized as a crime. This means if a netizen identifies a bullying case, he or she can report it to the relevant authorities. I must admit that Internet trolls seem to have all the free time on their hands and have taken bullying others as a daily hobby. If you are a cyberbully and you think that is fame or it makes you an online bull, I kindly request you to find something worth to do with your life instead of spreading hate and bringing negativity into the online world. On the Internet, I have also come across forums where different nationalities or races often show their dislikes towards others. Some of the examples include Australians making jokes about New Zealanders as fat and lazy people, South Africans making jokes to Zimbabweans about their aging president, all Nigerians being viewed as drug dealers and scammers, British men as rapists among many others. In some of the heated exchanges, the choice of words applied isn’t anywhere near respectful. Me think the inventors of Internet invested it for a good reason and not for criminals to flourish and extend their tentacles from street to online communities. I’m one of those who believe its existence has helped so many people in different ways and therefore I see no reason why the relevant authorities should allow cyberbullies a chance to turn this wonderful discovery into a nerve center of hatred and hostilities.

Contador Harrison