Last night, I posted a message in a popular group about cyber bullying. Before and after that, I received a bunch of messages from users who were currently being bullied on the site, who've been bullied in the past, or who had experiences with being bullied in some way. After all these messages and talks, it's pretty clear.
We have a bullying problem on this site and that's not okay.
[u][b]I'm sorry if you're being bullied in this community. You don't deserve that. If you're being harassed in any way, please report the messages (and mute that person) so that the Ninjas can deal with it accordingly.[/b][/u]
Bullying comes in all shapes and forms. Cyber bullying is no different, yet so many think lesser of it. People say things like, "Just ignore it" or "fight back" or even "it's just words", but it's more than that. It's people who are saying those things to you and other people. They are making it so you can't enjoy this site with certain people and at certain times, and that isn't acceptable. This is supposed to be a community, not a battleground.
Think about someone who you think might have been bullied on here. Maybe it's you. Maybe its' a friend. Maybe it's a stranger. Even still, maybe you were the one doing the bullying. In any case, let's think about the person being targeted. I think it's safe to say that there's no reason they should be targeted. It's not an acceptable practise in real life so there's no reason we should stand for people not feeling safe here.
I think what really gets me are the people who want their victims to stand up and fight back. That's something we, as a community, need to not support under any circumstances. Retaliation isn't the answer. That people shouldn't be bullied in the first place. They deserve better.
Maybe someone is targeted because they're really excitable, because of their age, they have a strange voice or personality, they're a girl, they're a bit different from you, they seem false in some way, because the bully thinks they're vying for attention, or because they're too "weak" to stand up for themselves and are an easy target. I'd like to say those are random and off the top of my head, but they aren't. Those are just some of the excuses I've seen on this site for bullying. Not one of those is excusable. In fact, there is no excuse for bullying.
[b][u]Being a Bystander[/u][/b]
What being a bystander means is that you stand by and watch when someone is in trouble or is getting bullied. Being a bystander is extremely harmful to the wellbeing of a society, community, or even just a person. If you ever see someone being bullied in a private group or in the main forum, please report the bully's posts. Let the victim know that they're not alone. Get the Ninjas involved. You can make a difference in this community by not standing by when bullying happens. Please, do the right thing.
I know that some of you reading this might think it's stupid and pointless and that people just need thicker skin. If you think that, that's your right, but it's no excuse to let people be harassed. Be the better person and lend a helping hand. Calling people bullies might sound childish, but it is what it is. It's a childish name for a childish act.
Stay classy, community.
Edit: I am not talking about trash talk, bickering, or anything petty like that. I am talking about targeted attacks and worse. [url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forums/Post/210649983?sort=0&page=0&path=1]Please refer to the linked post for more details.[/url]
Edit: For those asking for ways to deal with cyber bullying, here are a few: Talk it out with them personally if you're able to, get a Ninja involved and ask for their help, mute them and report their posts, or even settle your differences in game. However, since what I'm talking about is more serious than a simple disagreement or distaste between two people, please get a Ninja involved. No one deserves targeted, continuous harassment.
[u]Edit: There seems to be a miscommunication on my part. I'm not trying to police the internet or something. I'm just trying to let all of you know that this is an issue and that what you say matters. I'm sure it's not too much to ask that you all respect one another. Go ahead and trash talk and say how Hunters are the best class (which is true) or that New Monarchy is better than the other factions (also true), but don't go so far beyond that that you're antagonising someone and constantly berating them, harassing them, and actively trying to bother them. If you see someone else going too far, report it. That's all I'm asking.[/u]