ARGUS COMMENT: Web abuse is very real
2:01pm Tuesday 20th August 2013 in News
THE debate over internet safety continues apace as more shocking and unpleasant stories emerge from the victims of so-called trolls.
There needs to be a better name for people who hound and intimidate others on social media and other websites.
They are not characters from a fairy story.
They are vicious, bullying cowards who sit at their keyboards spouting vitriol while protected by the cloak of anonymity.
Quite how the internet becomes a safer place remains to be seen.
The originators of sites like Facebook and Twitter probably never imagined how huge their creations would become or how some twisted individuals would use them. But they have a responsibility to make their sites safe for all users.
Law enforcement agencies have a role to play - but so do we all.
Most social media sites have report buttons but too few people use them, particularly if they are not directly affected by the abuse.
It is almost as if because it is happening in the digital world it is not really happening at all.
How many of us would walk on by if such abuse was happening in front of us in the real world? Hopefully not many.
That is how abuse via social media should be approached. It is real and creates real victims.
The internet is a 21st century Pandora's box.
It cannot be closed but it should be controlled - and that responsibility rests with all users.
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