Cyberstalking

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Image from http://womensissues.about.com/od/violenceagainstwomen/a/CyberstalkingFS.htm

As many of you know I am pretty open on social media and on the whole the advantages outweigh the disadvantages. It’s great to get comments on blog posts, get people replying or retweeting my tweets, participating in debates on fb or remotely following a conference. But recently I have had some experiences that have made me rethink my open policy. In general on fb I accept friendship requests if we have mutual friends or I can see that they are in the same line of work. Recently I have had quite a lot of friendship requests from people I have no connection with, furthermore when I look at their fb page, there is nothing there… Needless to say I don’t accept their friendship request. Another recent incident was that someone I did accept a friendship request from started fb messaging me, for some reason I felt uneasy about this and didn’t respond. Then this morning he started liking literally hundreds of my posts, so naturally I de-friended him. What on earth did he think he was doing? Cyberstalking can be defined as “Cyberstalking is the use of the Internet or other electronic means to stalk or harass an individual, a group, or an organization.” Bonnie Stewart and George Veletsianos are doing an interesting study at the moment about disclosure online, people who are being staked, or victims of identity crime. I think given the openness of the web and the potential dangers of adopting open practice this is a timely and important study. I look forward to seeing the results. 

2 Responses to “Cyberstalking”

  1. Ana Cristina Pratas Says:

    Hi Grainne,

    I’m really sorry to hear about this example of cyberstalking, especially as I recently went through something similar. Someone (actually a male, or someone who had a male avatar) took the liberty of messaging me and sending me porn.

    I only accept FB requests from colleagues or people I know. So this begs the questions if whether there are individuals who now pose as educators.

    Thank you for sharing Bonnie Stewart and George Veletsianos’ study - interesting indeed!

  2. Gráinne Says:

    Thanks for those kind words Ana, yes not a pleasant experience, there are some weird people out there, luckily most people are lovely!

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