New Facebook anti-bullying tools released

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Facebook has released new measures to curb bullying and abuse, protecting high-profile users and reporting problems for others.

Comment Moderation

The social network has added a new tool to moderate comments. With this feature, you can delete multiple comments instantly.

The tool manages your interactions on Facebook. You can delete negative comments and protect your community from ever reading them.

Facebook says they have ongoing tests to find and block offensive words from appearing in comments.

Comment moderation will arrive on Android and desktop first. Support for iOS will be in the coming months.

Reporting for Others

Facebook will also provide new tools so users can submit a report on behalf of another Facebook user who they think is a victim of bullying or harassment.

Being the target of unwanted attention can be stressful and some people may not feel comfortable reporting a bully or harasser. In other cases, bullying or harassment happens out of sight from victims. If you see a friend or family member being bullied or harassed, now you can report someone on their behalf via the menu above the post that you are concerned about. Once reported, our Community Operations team will review the post, keep your report anonymous, and determine whether it violates our Community Standards.

Facebook will also add protections for public figures, especially younger people.

Our bullying and harassment policies protect private individuals, but we permit open and critical discussion of people who are featured in the news or have a large public audience based on their profession or chosen activities. We’ve talked to people who use Facebook as well as safety experts to find ways we can better protect these public figures from harassment. Earlier this year, we expanded our policies to guard against the harassment of young public figures on Facebook. In the coming weeks, we will further expand our policies to better protect public figures against harassment regardless of age.

A good example involves the offensive meme of 14-year-old actor Millie Bobby Brown. The meme pushed the actor to quit Twitter.

Facebook says celebrities are visible to the public and open for discussion. Yet, we need to draw a line on these behaviors. Facebook wants to draw the line.

For example, severe attacks that directly engage a public figure will not be allowed under the new policy. If anyone experiences unwanted behavior on Facebook, they can report the person who is bullying or harassing them, anonymously ignore unwanted messages, and block someone without them being notified.

Online Education

Facebook says it has expanded its online education courses. These programs will help younger users understand the risks of bullying and the options available to them.

People around the world participate in Facebook’s online safety and anti-bullying programs, built in partnership with experts and community organizations. We recently introduced a new partnership with the National Parent Teachers Association in the US to facilitate 200 community events in cities in every state to address tech-related challenges faced by families, including bullying prevention. Working with partners, we also offer a peer-to-peer online safety and anti-bullying program to every secondary school in the UK. And we support a program in India that has educated tens of thousands of young people about online safety, thoughtful sharing, and privacy and security.

The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention says suicide is a leading cause of death in the US. It accounts for nearly 45,000 American deaths each year.

Although reasons vary, some studies have shown links between depression and social media use, especially among teens and young users.

Read Facebook’s full post here.


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Author: Francis Rey

Francis is a voracious reader and prolific writer. His work appears on SocialBarrel.com and several other websites, covering social media, technology and other niches.

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