How to report bullying or abuse on social media

Facebook

If you are being bullied on Facebook you can currently report the offender's posts by selecting "report post" from the drop down arrow in the top right hand corner of the offensive post, comment, or image.

Twitter

If you get a tweet or reply that is offensive you can simply unfollow the offender. If they continue with their abuse you can block them by selecting the head icon on their profile and then "block user". If this fails you can contact twitter directly, they also have advice pages on what to do if you are being abused online.

YouTube

You can flag a video that is offensive by clicking on the flag on the bottom right of the video. YouTube will take a look at it to see whether it breaks their terms of use. If it does then they will remove it. If someone is using the comments section to bully, harass or threaten you, then there is a reporting tool page where this can be investigated

How to report bullying or abuse on messaging apps

Instagram

There is plenty of advice on instagram for people who are being bullied, either through negative comments, fake profiles, or hacked accounts. They advise the user to block and unfollow the abuser, but if this persists use their in-app reporting tool.

Snapchat

Snapchat allows users to send pictures that delete themselves after a set period of time. However, bullying can still take place in the form pictures being shared without permission, screenshots, negative comments etc. It is possible to block users by tapping the menu icon, select "my friends" and delete the offender by swiping right across their name. Even if you haven't added them as a friend they will still appear in the "my friends" list under "recent". If you receive an inappropriate photo or if you are being harrassed or bullied, report it by filling out their online form.

Whatsapp

Whatsapp is a messaging application that allows users to send instant messages, videos, photos and audio messages to a person or a group. They can only be sent to other smartphone users running the app. You are automatically conected at start up to whatsap users in your address book. Sadly bullying can take many forms, not the least abusive group chats. If you are subject to abuse you can block and delete the offender.

General safety tips

Don’t post anything on a social networking site which gives your real name, address, phone number or which will allow a stranger to contact you in real life. Make sure you don't ID your friends either.

Don't upload anything that might embarrass you at a later date. You might not realise it but things you post on the internet now could come back to cause you problems later on, for instance when you go for a job interview. If you are doing a professional course, it could even ruin your career prospects! So if you are not happy for it to be shown to the world then do not hit send.

Remember once you hit send, you have lost control of that image or comment.

If you have a webcam or smartphone never be pressured into taking pictures of yourself that you wouldn't want other people to see. Trust your gut instinct over this. Once you have lost control over that picture it can cause a lot of issues and unpleasantness.

If you're using a shared computer you'll stay logged on even when you close the browser. So don't forget to log off when you've finished the session and clear the history, passwords and cache.