Social networking is a great way to keep in touch with friends, share experiences and photographs, but sometimes people can use these sites to be abusive, offensive and nasty towards other users.
If you’re being bullied online, always tell someone that you trust, such as a friend, your parents or an adult at school. Telling someone is often the first step in stopping it.
It’s important to use strong privacy settings on your social media accounts and only accept requests or connect with people you know. That way you have control over who can see your posts and access your personal information and photographs.
Always remember that you have the right to block and ‘unfriend’ a person and always report bullying to the social network so that anything offensive can be removed completely from the site.
Actress Maisie Williams starred in Channel 4's hard-hitting drama Cyberbully in January 2015 to highlight the pitfalls of social media misuse and how bullies can take control very quickly.
If you are sent offensive message try to keep a record of this by using the ‘Print Screen’ key on a computer keyboard or using the camera or screen shot function on a mobile device.
Bullying, whether online or in the playground, can cause misery for the children involved but thankfully there is a lot of information and support available to stop the bullies.
Visit the ChildLine Cyberbullying webpage for answers to frequently asked questions, support videos, social media advice, and where you can turn to for further support from a child or parents perspective.
Other useful sites include:
- For information on how to stay safe online visit Think U Know
- For more advice and tips on how to beat cyberbullying visit Bullying UK
- For advice around online bullying and information about reporting it, visit You & Co