CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) – This week, Facebook rolled out some new strategies aimed at helping teens report online bullying.
The measures are directed towards younger teenagers who may need extra help identifying and reporting bullying or harassment.
Jacqui Shepperd is a Charlotte nanny who has three children including a teenage daughter who has struggled with bullying on Facebook.
“One of her friends was bullying, calling her names, and making up things that weren’t very nice,” said Shepperd. “I felt sad for my daughter and angry at the same time.”
Facebook recognizes it can be a tool for bullies, and now the new strategies are giving bullying victims some tools of their own. Instead of clicking the standard, vague “report” button on Facebook, teen users can now tell the social network a particular post “is a problem.”
From there, Facebook helps the teen narrow down the issue by asking whether he or she just doesn’t like the post or it’s really harassment.
Then the teen is prompted to communicate directly with the bully and ask her to cut it out or block her from Facebook communication.
If teenagers feel they’re in physical danger, another new feature allows them to report that. Facebook prompts them to call the police and click a button to ‘Get help from a trusted friend’ by forwarding the threatening post to a friend, parent, sibling, or teacher.
“I think that would be a very good thing to have on Facebook, so the parents know, and it’s right there in documentation. They can print it or send it to somebody else, like the other child’s parent,” said Shepperd.
She thinks parents are the key to dealing with bullies, but she’s glad Facebook is getting involved. She believes it’ll take the whole community to stop bullying for good.
Click here to read about the new anti-bullying measures from Facebook and to see screen shot examples of how to report bullying or harassment.