Yes, Facebook, yes! Facebook introduced a new feature that lets users report that”this post is a problem.” The new feature is geared towards young adolescents and the seemingly never-ending problem of digital drama.
The feature works like this: if a user sees a post that is upsetting they can click “This post is a problem.” From there the user is asked several questions and based on their answers, Facebook offers several different modes of intervention. As CNN reports:
…a list of suggested actions is generated based on how pressing his complaint is. If the [user] is more annoyed than fearful, he might choose to send a pre-written message to the other person saying that the post makes him uncomfortable. If he is afraid, he will be prompted to get help from a trusted friend or adult. There are links to catch anyone who may be feeling suicidal and direct them to professionals and Facebook’s own suicide chat hotline.
This is a step in the right direction! By adding this feature, Facebook is giving its users appropriate tools to keep them more safe online than they have been. Additionally, it’s allowing young users to get the online guidance they need through a medium that is comfortable for them.
Often young people are reluctant to let a parent know what is happening online for various reasons I’ve mentioned here. I can imagine that if a young person uses the new feature and Facebook suggests, “Go talk to a trusted adult, like your mom or dad.” What is a teenager to do – even Facebook says to talk to their parent!
Cyberbullying photo available from Shutterstock