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Trolling issue 'grows' as youngsters live in digital world

Social media expert Professor Mark Griffiths said the issue with online trolling is growing, as more and more youngsters grow up in the digital world.

As part of a campaign to stop internet bullying, he has created a guide for the 'do's and don'ts' of social media.

The do's and don'ts of social media Credit: Facebook

Professor Mark Griffiths said: "The ability to remain anonymous online can lead to people saying what they may not in person over social networking channels.

"Young people need to understand the consequences that these comments can have, and it's important to teach them how to use social media correctly, to make the internet a safer and happier place."

Youth charity: Internet trolling is 'potentially deadly'

A youth charity is today launching a campaign to combat online bullying, something which they say is "potentially deadly".

The charity is calling for a safer use of the internet, as a third of teenagers aged 14 to 18 have been subject to trolling abuse.

We have all heard of cases where youngsters have harmed themselves due to troll attacks - so writing a trolling message isn't harmless fun, it's potentially deadly.

Our aim isn't to attack the trolls, but instead to get young people to do something positive and pledge not to be a troll themselves, abiding by the 'netiquette' guide we have created.

– Terry Ryall, chief executive of vInspired

Celebrities support anti-trolling campaign

TOWIE star Lauren Goodger and TV presenter Caroline Flack are backing a new campaign which aims to stop internent bullying.

The Lolz not Trolls campaign aims to give teenagers information on how to behave online, to make social media channels a safer place.

TOWIE star Lauren Goodger is backing the anti-trolling campaign Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
TV presenter Caroline Flack supports the Lolz not Trolls campaign Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

A third of youths troll because their friends do it too

2,000 youngsters aged 14 to 18 have been polled about the issue of internet trolling, as part of a new campaign to combat the form of internet bullying.

  • More than two thirds said they received abusive messages from someone they know
  • Almost half of youngsters keep the attack secret
  • One in five think sending a message in cyberspace is less damaging than face to face insults
  • Half the teenagers polled believe it is ok to say things online that you would not in person
  • A third of youths say they troll because theirs friends do it too

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One in ten youngsters carry out trolling attacks

As many as one in ten young people carry out trolling attacks, with a third of youngsters the subject of online abuse.

More than a quarter of teenagers aged 14 to 18, say they have been the victim of regular attacks, with the majority of criticism about the victim's appearance.

New campaign launched against internet trolling Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

Research from youth volunteering charity vInspired also found that a third of youngsters have lost confidence from trolling, yet nearly a quarter of teenagers admit to finding it funny.

The charity today launches its campaign Lolz not Trolls to tackle the problem.

Presenter targeted by internet 'trolls'

Radio 5 presenter Richard Bacon
Richard Bacon endured nearly two years of abuse before making a complaint to the police. Credit: PA Wire

Former Blue Peter presenter Richard Bacon has revealed how he has been targeted by abusive internet "trolls".

The BBC Radio Five Live presenter suffered nearly two years of anonymous online abuse directed not only at him, but at his wife and baby.

He has complained to police, and through making a documentary on his experience met preyed on by "RIP trolls" that post offence messages on tribute sites. He says more needs to be done to tackle the issue of online "trolling". He said:

"It's definitely growing and it's definitely getting worse. You have got to try and work out where critical comment crosses over into harassment."

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