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Tackling the Trolls - Is Facebook Doing Enough?

Monday 19th November 2012

At the start of anti-bullying week - we have found that 1 in 3 young people are being bullied online.

Convictions for trolling - abusive and offensive messages being posted on social networking profiles - have also risen by 150 percent in the last 4 years.

We've been speaking to a 16 year old who told us she was sent death threats on Facebook and was bullied so badly on the site she was diagnosed with anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder.

"When I was about 14 I just felt really awful," she explained. "I was just like... if I don't kill myself in the end this will destroy me, this will ruin my life so I eventually spoke up.

"At first people didn't take me seriously at all - they thought I was joking, thought I was making it up. I got print screens of what people were saying and I showed it to the teachers."

She wants social networking sites to ban people who post abusive messages.

LBC's Eleanor Noakes has been to Facebook's London headquarters where Rosa Birch from their public policy team talked her through how to use their new support dashboard to deal with any abuse on the site:

Rosa Birch from Facebook's public policy team explained that the social network's new support dashboard has been improved following feedback from users who were concerned that when they reported posts, comments or groups they didn't know what or if anything was done about it.

The support dashboard now lets you monitor what is happened when you report content and what the outcome is e.g. if it is taken down or not.

More advice on how to tackle Facebook bullying can be found here>>>


However is it enough?

We asked the Minister for Culture, Ed Vaizey, if it's time to bring new laws in to keep up with trolling on social networking sites?

He believes it is up to the companies involved to regulate it  - not the Government.

"I would never say never in terms of the law. What I would say is that i think that in this kind of space which is fast moving, where technology is changing all the time, the really crucial thing is to keep a dialogue... is to keep all the players in this development round a table."

What do you think? Should more be done to tackle trolling? Are things like Facebook's new dashboard enough? Let us know using the box below...

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