“No longer is conformity primarily enforced by the members of one’s community, but rather through online social networks people from all over the world can ostracize, shame, and ridicule those who fail to hold beliefs or display behaviors which are considered socially acceptable.” – unknown.
In my opinion, online harassment and cyber-bullying (including social media bullying) are manifestations of deep-rooted criminal behavior of hate-mongers. Anyone defying conformity and trying to show their dissent is often shamed by conformists. In many cases, they hide behind digital screens and let loose the beast harboring in their minds. Online harassment presents to us a more wicked clan of criminals who, for the fear of reprisal, rarely commit any crimes in the physical world. But, the virtual nature of social media acts as a safe haven for these ‘psychopaths and sociopaths’.
Then, there’s the hypocritical policy of social media giants, who register disapproval over online crimes mostly perpetrated by ‘fakers’. However, they are not drafting any policies or making efforts to curb criminals from creating fake accounts – probably because doing this will affect the count of gross social media users across the globe. This, in turn, may directly affect their revenue generation more than the users themselves. The ‘report’ and ‘block’ options on social media are like tranquillisers for the depressed patients – they will continue to experience the pain and stress unless the root of problem is eradicated.
In my experience, reporting or blocking anyone who has an intention or obsession to harm people on Facebook (or for that matter, on different social media platforms) rarely helps the victim. The criminal can comfortably create another account in no time, and will restart the ‘bullying programme’.
There is a need to scrutinise the process of making accounts on social media platforms. Social media owners need to come with an elaborate survelliance system and monitoring cell which will detect harassment activities and solve them in real time.
Featured image used for representative purposes only.