Cyberbullying is NEVER ok

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With the recent chain of events, one of our articles [now removed] mentioned cosplayers names as examples for the topic and since then, they have received death threats and threatening messages. Please be aware, we do not condone this type of behavior from our fans. We understand opinions would like to be expressed but when it reaches a point of threatening someone, you’ve gone too far.

The internet has opened up a gateway for fans to express their opinions – sometimes hurtful – and hide behind the safety of their computer screen. Sometimes, when the attention is not met – cyberbullying begins to happen. Cyberbullying is a growing problem for teenagers and young  adults – and now even cosplayers and game developers. We know celebrities, public figures and cosplayers are in the spotlight and have a large fanbase – but it does not make them immune to critics. Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte, who has experienced having jokes made about him on the internet, said he doesn’t care about his haters and it comes with the territory from being a celebrity. Even Felicia Day, star of the channel Geek&Sundry and all-around-awesome-geek-girl, has stopped reading her Youtube comments due to some negative opinions and didn’t want to “feed the trolls”.

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The recent cyberharassment/bullying case has been on several cosplayers on their costumes, their looks, and their personal matters. It’s fair for you to have an opinion, but it doesn’t give you a right to harass them. They are people too. Just because one disagrees with their cause does not give that person a right to harass and belittle them. You do not know them. You do not know their life story. If you disagree with an opinion, you are free to state you disagree and your reasons, but do not feel the need to keep bothering them and egging them on. This does not make you a mighty person. It makes you a troll.

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With social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter, fans and people have the opportunity to call people out publicly. Twitter has become a larger outlet for cyberbullying to occur. It is easy for people to create more than one account and attack people. Celebrities, like Wil Wheaton and Brent Spiner, do respond to some of their haters with hilarious and witty responses. All in all, if you don’t like what they say… don’t follow them. People who join just to argue and criticize- you are instigators and bullies, not debaters. There are debating forums out there for you to voice your opinions. Join one of those forums and let it go. Do not push it further.

Of course, we are given freedom of speech and people are allowed to voice their opinions and critiques. But when criticizing turns into a threat or harassment, you’re breaking the law. These people are real people with real problems too. Because they are in the public eye does not give anyone the right to threaten them or belittle them. Everyone is entitled to their opinions, but do not cross that line. Bullying – in any way – is NEVER ok.

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Laura Sirikul
Laura Sirikul 1849 posts

Trekkie. Jedi. Whovian. Sherlockian. Hobbit. Sanrio. Comics. I am Spartacus. Warrior Princess. Superhero. Nerd. Follow me @lsirikul