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Online abuse worries raised

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By Euan Maxwell
Front
Online abuse worries raised

A LOCKERBIE woman has urged others to be mindful after she says she suffered online abuse from internet trolls.

Speaking at the town’s recent community council meeting, Jan Andrews opened up about being subjected to the abuse from “keyboard warriors”.

She said: “I have been subjected to that in the last two months, it’s been horrendous. The biggest concern I have is if that happened to somebody who doesn’t have the same ability to put up with it. It was awful.

“Unfortunately it was adults, if you post your posts it will be there forever. The comments were horrendous.”

And Ms Andrews hopes that raising the concerns can deter others from suffering online abuse and at the same time promote internet safety.

She said: “People need to be careful about others’ internet safety. People need to be mindful. Some of the comments I received were horrific.

“I think this needs raised, not just for me as an individual but in general. It could break someone as it can have a damaging impact.”

Responding to Ms Andrews, PC Lee Barnfather said: “Social media sees keyboard warriors sitting in their own home posting things that they would never say on the street. There’s a fine line because if you cross it then it’s abusive.

“You don’t know the emotional state of the individual. When you speak to someone on the street you can maybe judge their emotional state but not when you’re putting a comment on Facebook or other social media platforms.

“It is a problem and people need to be aware of the impact it could have on any individuals on the end of the abuse.

“Social media is a great tool when used correctly but sometimes people use it for abuse.”

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