UK launches anti-trolling site to help victims of online abuse

UK launches anti-trolling site to help victims of online abuse

The UK has launched an anti-trolling website that offers practical tips to victims of online abuse, particularly women and members of the LGBT, on how to report the offence and where to seek help.

The site was developed by the government in response to research highlighting the scale of online abuse experienced by women and LGBT people.

Launched yesterday, the Stop Online Abuse site is accessible at www.stoponlineabuse.org.uk and offers help to people facing online harassment, revenge porn, hate speech, sexual harassment and blackmail.

It provides legal advice and practical tips on how to respond to derogatory and abusive comments online besides explaining how to identify abuse and get offensive content removed.

A variety of different forms of online abuse are highlighted on the site, like trolling (deliberately posting "offensive, upsetting or inflammatory comments online in an attempt to hurt and provoke a response").

It also mentions doxxing (publishing personal information about someone, including sex videos and photos, also known as revenge porn) and cyberstalking ("a pattern of online behaviour that is the long-term, intrusive and persistent pursuit of one person by another, making the victim feel frightened and distressed").

The site is particularly aimed at women and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, because they have suffered some of the most extreme online abuse since the explosion in use of social media, The Guardian reported.

The campaign organisation Stonewall said 23 per cent of LGBT pupils reported experiencing cyberbullying and 5 per cent of LGBT adults said they had been the target of homophobic abuse or behaviour online in the past year.

Nik Noone, the chief executive of Galop, the LGBT anti- hate crime charity that helped develop the site, said: "Evidence suggests that more than 1 million people in the UK face online abuse each year".

Nicky Morgan, the minister for women and equalities, said: "This new site will provide practical advice for women and LGBT people on how to recognise abuse, what steps to take to report it and how to get offensive content removed.

"It is another sign of our determination to tackle discrimination in all its forms and create a fairer society for everyone, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity."

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