In Too-Common Scenario, Indiana School Deals With Mystery Cyberbully

School officials and police in Hancock County, Indiana have been dealing with one of the worst cases of Facebook bullying they have ever seen. The bully uses “selfies” of her victim with postings that say the teens have had abortions, have chlamydia, or are on drugs. The person posts photos, assumingly from the victim’s personal social media accounts, and names of the victims who are mostly girls.

 

“I am very saddened that whoever posted this offensive Facebook page takes joy in causing anguish for others,” said Greenfield Superintendent Linda Gellert.

Gellert reported the page to Facebook and the Greenfield Police Department. Within hours of the page being taken down, a new page by “Molly Thots” was created with the same purpose.

Gellert says she was “distressed” by how quickly the new page showed up on Facebook. Gellert said that at Greenfield, social media outlets are blocked on school computers, but this does not stop the use of personal cell phones and tablets.

And Molly Thots posts frequently. The name, of course, is fictitious. “Molly” is a slang word for the drug Ecstasy, and “thot” is often an acronym for “that ho out there.”

Dana Hunsinger Benbow with The Indianapolis Star reported on the bullying and said occasionally the bullied students fight back by responding with remarks like, “Whoever it is props for being able to sleep at night knowing your self esteem is so low you have to go ranking people you barely know because of jealousy.”

The accused bully says they live in Greenfield, Indiana and attend or has attended Greenfield Central High School. and uses the name “Molly Thots,” who responds with comments such as “lol” or “likes” and proceeds to call the victims names.

Licensed clinical social worker Mandy Grella says that cyber bulling can be harmful causing health problems, low self-esteem, lower grades, substance use, and resistance to going to school. Grella found the posts “awful” and said that in many ways cyber bullying is worse than in person bullying because online allows more people to see the attack.

“And it’s 24-7 now, so it’s free game,” Grella said. “Someone who is trying to cyberbully, they can post something in the middle of the night for anyone to see before you even know it.”

Spokesman for the social media company Facebook says the bullying shouldn’t be happening at all.  Anonymous pages and abusive and harassing behavior are quickly taken down. He would not respond directly to the Molly Thots page.

Wednesday
02 26, 2014
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