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Opinion Or Cyberbullying? Here’s How to Differentiate The Two



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With the recent Miss Malaysia 2017 fiasco on how she said that African-Americans in the USA chose to be born black and they should take the police brutality as a challenge because it will apparently “make them stronger”, we have seen many examples of cyberbullying.

Comedian Harith Iskander has voiced out on this issue and has received much flak on it as netizens think that he is shielding her. However, the message that he tried to send out was to stop cyberbullying and nothing else.

So with the line between stating your own opinion and cyberbullying being so thin, we’ll be sharing with you guys what constitutes as cyberbullying and what’s not.

What IS cyberbullying?

According to StopBullying.gov, cyberbullying is bullying that takes place over digital devices like cell phones, computers, and tablets. Cyberbullying can occur through SMS, Text, and apps, or online in social media, forums, or gaming where people can view, participate in, or share content.

What actually counts as cyberbullying?

Some of the most common cyberbullying techniques that people use are giving death threats or asking them to die. The others include:

  • Posting comments or rumours about someone online that are mean, hurtful, or embarrassing.
  • Threatening to hurt someone or telling them to kill themselves.
  • Calling names and hurling insults.
  • Pretending to be someone else online in order to solicit or post personal or false information about someone else.

  • Posting mean or hateful names, comments, or content about any race, religion, ethnicity, or other personal characteristics online.
  • Creating a mean or hurtful webpage about someone.
  • Doxing which is a form of online harassment used to exact revenge and to threaten and destroy the privacy of individuals by making their personal information public, including addresses, credit card, phone numbers, links to social media accounts, and other private data.


So, do the comments under Samantha’s posts count as cyberbullying?

Yes and no. There are a few comments from people who have tried to educate her but were met with snide remarks. Well, those educational comments don’t count as cyberbullying as all they were trying to do is just to make her see where her mistakes were.

But it is comments like these that constitute as cyberbullying. Not cool.

Sure, many may say that “Oh, it’s justified because she said something like this and she didn’t think of all the other people who are struggling.” But the thing is, what all of us should do is to educate someone on why what they thought was wrong and not berate them.

We understand that many of you are frustrated and we are too but think of this situation as a classroom. A child is humiliated for being called out and will hold vengeance against the people. But if you educate the child to change their opinions on things, they will, in turn, try to change their friends’ minds as well.

Again, choose to EDUCATE instead of berate

In protests and movements, voices are much needed and by humiliating someone for their opinions (no matter how wrong they are) might go against what you stand for. If you choose to educate someone on your movement and why you’re supporting the said cause, you might have a chance to gain a voice, an ally which will strengthen the campaign.

This is, of course, an ideal situation but if you have tried sharing your thoughts and opinions then it is no longer on you. It is on the person who chooses ignorance as an answer.

Just because they don’t think the same way as you, they don’t deserve to “die”.


What do I do when I see cyberbullying going on? 

As cyberbullying victims get tormented by their internet bullies, many would be pushed to the point of depression and some will try to end their lives because they don’t see any solution.

However, you can help them by making sure that you do not participate in cyberbullying and also stop it when you see it. Report any inappropriate comments that resemble cyberbullying. If you are a victim and want to take further actions then take screenshots to serve as proof to report to the police.

If you or a friend is experiencing cyberbullying, don’t hesitate to contact Befrienders KL @ 603-76272929, Skype them at BefKL Skype 1 or email [email protected] You matter.


Also read: 20yo Girl From Penang Committed Suicide After FB Page Spread Fake Info & Cyberbullied Her

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