India, 13th April 2022: A latest report by Cyber Bullying Action Awareness Prevention (CyberBAAP) revealed that cyber harassment cases have surged post pandemic. It claimed to have received over 900 complaints from across 257 Indian cities last year. The majority of the complaints arose from trolling, followed by sextortion. The Founder of CyberBAAP, Nirali Bhatia, recently took to asynchronous social audio platform Swell to unearth further details around cyberbullying and how victims can combat the same on a day-to-day basis.
Ever since its launch, Swell has been consistent in evoking a new era in social media networking by inculcating healthy, human and meaningful conversations on the platform.
Ways to differentiate between trivia, casualties or a meme from cyberbullying
Nirali explained that simply using an electronic medium to either embarrass, harass or threaten the other person, counts under cyberbullying. Online bullying is also referred to as cyberbullying. However, the nature of harassment varies from commenting, cyberstalking, online trolling, and may even lead to flaming. It could be even posting rude, offensive or suggestive comments. She advises people to be extra careful while they’re in this virtual space.
Identification and screen-time management
“Understanding and identifying productive screen usage versus entertainment screen-time can help users in planning their screen time much better”, Nirali said. She says that segregating the two spaces for work, creativity, innovations, and entertainment helps in understanding cyberspace better. Talking further about the symptoms of cyberbullying, she adds that “sudden behavioral changes, being extremely emotional, changes in the sleep pattern, overall changes in food patterns are some of the signs that one needs to look after. Another very important reason for managing screen time is its emotionally triggering nature. The content on the internet is multimedia content and it is directly going to impact one’s emotions.”
Digital parenting tips and knowing about our dependency on technical gadgets
Nirali further advises parents to understand and foresee the ill effects of a certain technology, app, or device. As a parent, it’s important to be aware of what's happening in the digital world. This necessarily doesn’t mean being tech-savvy rather, one just needs to be aware in terms of knowing the kind of apps, games, or sites their children are using. She recommends building trust in their child and always having a channel for open communication, where they can openly share their new age mistakes.
Nirali states that to reduce dependency, it’s important to identify needs from wants, which is the only way out to have control over the dependency before it overpowers. It is differentiating productive usage from leisure time.
About Nirali Bhatia
Nirali Bhatia is a Counselling Psychologist, certified Cognitive Behavioural Therapist & Internet Addiction Therapist, specialising in “Cyber Psychology”. She is a TEDx Speaker, a Corporate Trainer and has conducted workshops & training programs for Corporates, Organisations, Educational Institutes and large Forums across the country. She is also the founder of an anti-cyber bullying organisation – Cyber B.A.A.P. which is an acronym for Cyber Bullying Awareness, Action and Prevention. She counsels the victims of cybercrimes, online psychological damages and addictions.
Started in San Francisco by Silicon valley based entrepreneurs Sudha Varadarajan and Arish Ali, Swell launched at SXSW in 2021 and in India, shortly after that. It is the first asynchronous voice-based social platform in India. The asynchronous nature of the platform not only makes it easier for listeners to catch up whenever they want but also improves the quality of the conversation by allowing for prior prep. Conversations on Swell are nuanced, thoughtful, and imperfect to promote authenticity, safety, and relatability in social networking. Every post on Swell is up to 5 min of audio and can have links and photos. Swell follows a no ad-based business model to prioritize user experience and monetization will be driven by offering premium tools and Swellcasts.
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