Cyberbullying: Things you Shouldn’t do When Creating YouTube Content
May 17, 2021
Cyberbullying is unfortunately a very widespread behavior. As the name suggests, cyberbullying is a form of bullying that happens over the Internet through the use of phones, computers and any other device that allows people to go online. This form of bullying can manifest in similar ways to real life harassment, since it usually consists in name calling or insults directed at the victim. These behaviors are horrible on their own, but the situation can quickly degenerate when death threats are thrown into the mix. Another serious issue is represented by doxxing, meaning the act of putting personal/identifying information about a victim online for the whole world to see.
An overwhelming majority of online harassment victims are teenagers: a study from 2018 shows that around 60% of teens suffered from abuse on the Internet. A very young individual who is subjected to such behaviors might be driven to commit damaging acts like self-harm as a way to cope, or even begin having suicidal thoughts (as shown here). Repeated online attacks can also lead to extreme emotional pain, which tends to manifest as anxiety and depression.
Cyberbullying on YouTube
Social media platforms are the main online spaces where harassment of any sort happens, with Instagram taking the lead. But other sites such as YouTube have to deal with cyberbullying as well. Some behaviors that lead to the violation of the video-streaming’s Community Guidelines can be defined as cyberbullying, such as abusive and hateful speech directed at a user of the platform. In case anybody engaged in any sort of harassment towards a person by creating offensive content, the offender’s video or channel could be reported to YouTube and there would be repercussions.
Since we all know cyberbullying is absolutely wrong and can have serious detrimental effects on the victim, when we create content on YouTube we should always keep a respectful attitude and not act in a way that hurts other people. YouTube’s updated harassment and cyberbullying policy states that threatening content – be it videos, live streams, comments, community posts, etc. – won’t be tolerated, but content that continuously and maliciously targets individuals’ attributes (such as appearance and group status) won’t be allowed as well.
YouTube’s Community Guidelines violations regarding cyberbullying
As we briefly mentioned earlier, a violation of YouTube’s harassment policy can manifest in the form of any type of content on YouTube, like a video, a live stream, a comment or a community post. So, if you think that you can get away with “only” leaving a nasty, hurtful or incriminating comment towards someone else, know that said comment could be very well reported to YouTube by other users. Down below is a list of things that the platform considers to be harassment/cyberbullying:
– prolonged name calling or malicious insults based on someone’s intrinsic attributes, such as race, sexual orientation and religious beliefs, but also physical appearance or the status as a survivor of sexual assault, child abuse, domestic abuse, etc.
– shaming, deceiving behavior or insults directed at a minor, and any kind of content that puts minors in danger
– doxxing (only when it comes to private information not available to the public)
– the incitation of others to harass, threaten or hurt individuals on or off YouTube
– targeting an identifiable individual as part of a harmful conspiracy theory
– cheering about or mocking the death or serious injury of a person
– the simulation of acts involving serious violence against others, such as executions, torture, maimings, beatings, sexual assault, etc.
– content featuring non-consensual sex acts, unwanted sexualization or anything that graphically sexualizes or degrades a person
We hope that our readers know better than harass, bully or hurt other people in any way while on YouTube, although keeping a positive attitude towards others should apply to every single website on the Internet. If you run into YouTube content that you deem offensive to you or to someone else, we suggest you report the offender’s actions to YouTube.