Social Media Harassment: 4 Types You Should Know

The terminology ‘social media harassment’, sometimes characterized as online bullying, refers to the employment of the internet to stalk, intimidate, harm, or disgrace someone. Abuse, harassing, trolls, flaming, and other forms of cyberbullying are all examples of cyberbullying. Some words are interchangeable, while others have lost their significance. Online abuse or online harassment, as defined by PEN America, is the widespread or severe targeting of an individual or group online through destructive actions. 

Actions of Social Media Harassment 

In September, a Pew Research Center survey of U.S. citizens discovered that 41% of Americans had directly encountered social media harassment in at least one of six major categories studied.

 Delivering aggressive or  unwanted emails

  • Encourage people to send the victim unsolicited or threatening emails or send the victim excessive emails.
  • Viruses sent via email are electronic sabotage.
  • Disseminating rumors.
  • Posting online disparaging remarks about the subject.
  • Negative messages are sent directly to the suffering.
  • Trying to impersonate the victim electronically by delivering a provocative, contentious, or tempting message, causing others to react badly to the victim.
  • Throughout a live conversation, abusing the victim.
  • Abusing others online, particularly on social networking platforms.
  • Distributing obscenity or other explicit content to the victim with the intent to offend.
  • Creating information on the internet that portrays the victim in a bad light.

Types of Social Media Harassment 

  • Concerned trolling

Abusers impersonate fans or followers of an artist’s work and send damaging and insulting remarks disguised as constructive criticism. Counter-speech can be futile, and banning may intensify the abuse since concern trolls are attempting to attract the eye and spend your time. 

It’s possible that muting, which allows users to suppress certain offensive content, so people wouldn’t have to see it, is more helpful. Ensure careful to identify any information that crosses the line from bothersome to abusive, and try enlisting the help of a supportive online community. 

  • Cyberstalking

In a strict context, “cyberstalking” refers to the employment of abusive behaviors electronically over an extended period to murder, harm, threaten, terrorize through the surveillance of a person online. Cyberstalking is a federal offense, and several countries have laws against it. 

One might choose to pursue legal action regarding a cyberstalker if they feel unsafe by calling law enforcement or obtaining legal guidance. Other tactics include:

  • Banning your stalker on social networking sites.
  • Recording every annoying episode related to cyberstalking.
  • Ensuring your online accounts are secure if you suspect identity theft.
  • Seeking the help of your support network. 
  • Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying is a broad word that refers to a variety of harassing activities. It is defined as “willful and repetitive harm perpetrated through the use of computers, mobile phones, as well as other electrical gadgets.” The phrase is most commonly applied to children and young people. For the most up-to-date materials and facts about cyberbullying, visit Cyberbullying.org. 

  • Cyber-Mob Violence (Dogpiling)

A big group of abusers uses a torrent of accusations, insults, obscenities, and other abusive methods to assault a victim. Furthermore, 20% of Americans claim they have already been bullied. Half of those who have been harassed digitally have just been victimized because of their political opinions. Outrage mob action is a type of mob punishment that focuses on publicly exposing, shaming, and penalizing a victim, usually for voicing thoughts on politically hot issues or concepts that the outrage community disagrees with or has misinterpreted to advance a specific goal. 

Navigating cyber-mob assaults might feel like a never-ending battle of overdrive. If disclosing the harassment isn’t working, probably ask a representative of the support network to keep an eye on it and notify you while users take a little break. Other possibilities include conducting a counter-speech crusade to establish and maintain a version of history or restore a Twitter handle associated with their screen name, issuing a statement informing the networking site to the pessimistic interaction, and partially removing or going confidential on the social media pages until it has settled.

 Social Media Harassment In The Workplace

Use of social media Harassment happens in a variety of workplaces. Employees must be aware of the many types of social media harassment and attempt to avoid it. Companies should provide training programs that teach employees about the many types of workplace social media abuse and how to avoid it. Individuals must also become aware of the several alternatives accessible to them in the face of cyberbullying. The following are the examples of occupational social media harassment:

  • Stalking on the Internet

A circumstance in which a coworker harasses a colleague by keeping track of everything they are doing on social media or through blog postings. A group of coworkers can also make a blog article or a website to annoy other colleagues.

  • Harassment on the Internet

Whenever a company, manager, employee, or teammate uses social media sites like Facebook or Twitter to send unpleasant remarks or texts to another coworker, this is known as virtual harassment.

  • Harassment through text

When a coworker is intimidated, harassed, or sent improper remarks by another coworker. Harassment in the form of sexting is a type of harassment. One individual sends video or photographs to another person via digital communication, but the recipient is upset.

What Are Some Tips To Prevent Internet Harassment?

In 2014, 15% of Americans claimed they had experienced more serious types of internet abuse. That percentage has now risen to 25%. While each circumstance is different, some broad steps may be followed to prevent harassment in the workplace:

  • Examine your company’s policy on the usage of email signatures. It is the block of text that gets attached automatically to the foot of all the outgoing messages. This should offer enough detail about the individual to be recognized, but not so many that it gives personal details to the contacts list.
  • Restrict the details you include in the absence message to just absence dates and who to notify. Don’t let on that you’re on vacation or traveling for work.
  • Don’t often leave the computer alone while it is logged in.
  • To increase communications and web use reliability, employ encryption, privacy policies, technology, or other technical measures.
  • If users have the option, choose a gender-neutral email address.
  • Make the email password at least twelve characters long. However, longer passwords are acceptable as well. Make sure it has a mix of upper- and lower-case characters, numerals, and symbols. The best credentials don’t contain letters or numbers, and they don’t follow a particular structure.
  • Follow the instructions provided by your company’s Digital technology professional since there will be different needs for privacy settings and protection against malicious software and dangerous malware, among other things.
  • Observe any Online communication policies and processes that your company has in place. Address Internet safety and confidentiality with the Internet technology professional at the company.
  • Change the password regularly. 

Recognizing that preventing individuals from becoming abusive online is extremely difficult at the micro-scale, but considerable work can be done at the organizational level to enhance instruments for self-defense and responsibility systems. Everyone can strike back at harassment and defend the space for free speech in the digital sphere equipped with their intelligence and grit, backed by tangible instruction and the solidarity of everyone else.

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