Rose Couture

Aspiring teacher. “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” ― William Arthur Ward

Should “kids” really Ask.fm?

2 Comments

After reading a couple articles about the frightening facts of Ask.fm and teens committing suicide because of Ask.fm, I am wondering if this platform is really worth using. Ask.fm is an anonymous platform, where people can ask each other questions about themselves and respond to the questions, without ever revealing who is who. Although this platform is intended for people to interact in a “common sense” way, many teens seen this Ask.fm phenomena as another social tool that permits them to bully others anonymously.
images

I was blown away when I found out that some teens used it to bully themselves. Wait, what? Yes, teens will log in anonymously and bully themselves, and then respond to this bullying with their own account. I can see this platform being a problem for all types of individuals, and I am very surprised that people will harm their very own person, but this is nothing new. Ask.fm is only available for people above the age of 13 (as well as Twitter and Facebook), but I am certain it is a program that is easy to access, and someone has to show the proper online behaviour to these kids that navigate the internet and use social medias. Wether it is a teacher, a parent, a guardian, whoever is present around a child that uses social media, has the opportunity and responsibility to raise awareness about the online community.

“If you would not show this to your grandma or your family, do not post it”, it is not because we are behind screens that we are invisible. Wether the words are spoken or typed, they have an impact, and they can be harmful. If a teen is being bullied on social media, mental support should be available to help them out, and there is always the option of deleting an account. But remember, everything you post online leaves a digital print, it never really disappears. So think twice, no think three times before you post something. It could be harmful and you could regret it in the future.
cyber_bullytext

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Should “kids” really Ask.fm?

  1. Hi Rose!
    When I used to have Facebook I had few young people in my friends who went to grade 9. One day I was checking my newsfeed and I noticed an Ask.fm post. It was like “Hey! Ask me something!” So I went on that person’s page to see what kinds of things do “kids” ask each other. It was such a big eye opener for me about that person. (I honestly thought she is a nice girl but I was wrong). I was very surprised by the amount of inappropriate language. Girls were calling each other bad names and guys at the same time had happy faces all over. The whole page was covered with violence.

    Ask.fm basically promotes cyber-bullying. How much worse can it get? This system works perfect for bullies because they easily get away with what they posted. I curious what does the Ministry of Education think about this. Is it possible to shut down some of these websites? What do you think Rose?

    One thing that does not make sense to me is why do kids use platforms like Ask.fm if they do not want to be bullied or be uncomfortable with answering the questions?

    • Hey Vlad,

      Thank you for your response, you raised very important questions. I am sure that the Ministry of Education might be sharing similar opinions concerning the “use” that kids make of Ask.fm, but it could be very hard to monitor the use of such platforms since you can ask and comment/respond anonymously. As future teachers, it is possible for us to raise awareness of cyber-bullying with our students. A good think we could do in class would be to ask the students “Why do kids bully on the internet?”, “Why do they feel that way?”, “Why do they bully to begin with?”, etc. This could bring potential debates in the classroom, but it could be a big eye opener as to why it is NOT okay to bully, wether it is on the internet or offline. It is also possible for the school to limit access to the students to such platforms by blocking the access from the school network, but I believe this option will only make kids eager to go home and go on to whatever they want to go on. By not blocking the access and raising awareness in our students, they are therefore apt to make an educated decision, and hopefully they are conscious of the decisions they make, and their consequences.
      I do not think that kids use the platforms to be bullied, but to get to know other people and maybe be “interesting” for once, as they might not feel like they fit in or need someone to talk to. It is great to start fresh with people you don’t know and who will not necessarily judge you right off the bat, allowing for conversation and feeling like somebody, somewhere “cares” about you. Of course, other kids will use this as an easy way to bully, but the bullied should try to delete their account if they are victims of non-stop harassment and get help/support. Overall, I believe that kids will do what other kids do, good or bad, they will follow the trend, and as teachers, we have the opportunity to change this unhealthy behaviour and raise awareness.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s