Thursday, July 14, 2016


My Article Published in Gulf News UAE on 15July 16,Focus: Social media sexism
Trolling, harassment and hate speech online has existed ever since the beginning of social media. But it’s taking on an even uglier hue as women are being targeted. A recent report from Kerala, India, found that of 70,000 cybercrimes in 2013, at least 50,000 fell under the category of gender abuse. Now, female British Members of Parliament have launched an online campaign called #ReclaimTheInternet in response to growing concerns about the impact of hate speech and abuse on social media. Readers debate this phenomenon.Education is key to curbing bad behaviour
Today, gender abuse and cybercrimes are increasing, and this is mainly true for teenagers and students, who are constantly on the internet and exposed to its many influences. They are attracted to the content available online, but are often tempted to commit mistakes. On the one hand, social media is playing a vital role in society, but on the other hand, a lot of miscreants commit cybercrimes, with unsuspecting people falling into their trap and some even losing their lives. This is mainly due to the lack of education, because the system is not encouraging the adoption of a moral code to encourage students to be more responsible in cyberspace. Educational curricula should be modified to teach students moral behaviour, and to let them know there are serious consequences to doing something right or wrong – even online.
By doing this, cybercrime statistics might come down to a certain extent. Apart from this, it is the duty of parents to spend some time daily with their children, and lead by example when it comes to good behaviour. Good moral behaviour also develops when one associates with good friends. Children from morally aware, educated families would behave better and have a better understanding of the world around them. Apart from India, other countries are also facing the problem of gender abuse. In Britain, for instance, there is much outrage from women on the impact of hate speech by people on social media. People gain or lose respect by the way they behave, and this is a reality both online and offline.
From Mr K. Ragavan
Retired executive based in Bengaluru, India

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